The Wake County Sheriff’s Office will suspend pistol and concealed-carry permit applications until April 30 as demand rises during the Wuhan virus outbreak, Sheriff Gerald Baker said on Tuesday, March 24, 2020.
Applications that were previously submitted will continue to be processed, Baker announced during a press briefing.
Last week, the number of pistol permit applications averaged 290 on a daily basis. This represented more than triple the approximately 90 applications filed per day during the same time period in 2019, officials reported.
Elected officials described the sheriff’s action as “reckless.”
In a statement, Republican Senators Warren Daniel and Danny Britt demanded that Baker revoke his order.
“State law requires sheriffs to approve or reject a pistol permit within 14 days,” they wrote.
“Sheriff Baker must immediately rescind his illegal decision to halt sale of pistols in Wake County,” they added.
If Baker doesn’t change his actions, they said they would get their legislative colleagues to compel him to change his policy.
“People are already suspicious and on edge,” they stated. “It’s reckless to illegally suspend their Second Amendment rights just when they need assurance that they can trust government.”
Baker claims that his office needs time to sort out the overload of permit applications.