Illinois State Police Prepare to Issue First Concealed Carry Permits

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SPRINGFIELD (AP) -- Illinois State Police say they're getting ready to issue the state's first concealed carry permits in the coming days.

Police spokesman Monique Bond says that the first licenses could be issued by next week. Authorities were hoping to have the first permits issued in the spring.

Illinois gun owners began applying for the permits in January after the state became the last in the nation to allow people to carry concealed guns. Police have been reviewing the applications.

By the end of January, more than 16,000 people had filed paperwork to get a permit.

State officials believe as many as 400,000 people will apply for the concealed carry permits during the first year of the law