Dana Austin, from Kings Mountain, aims for a target during a concealed carry weapons class offered by Carolinas First Defense Saturday. Around 100 people signed up for the class in the wake of debate about gun control stemming from a series of mass shootings across the nation in 2012.
By Alicia Banks Published: Wednesday, February 20, 2013 at 13:30 PM.
KINGS MOUNTAIN – Groups of men and women huddled behind Christian Freedom Baptist Church. Each carried a handgun. They aimed for the targets ahead from various distances. Pops of gunfire echoed as bullet casings bounced off the ground. Only a few minutes passed before they reloaded.
Nearly 100 adults attended a N.C. Concealed Carry Handgun Class this past weekend through Carolinas First Defense, a company that teaches the public about correctly handling weapons and self-defense. Classes usually attract about 30 students each month, said Jesse Saucier, co-owner and chief instructor of CFD. Saucier is also a N.C. Highway Patrol trooper and firearms instructor for the division.
“We want people to better protect themselves,” he said. “We feel it’s necessary for civilians to learn how to properly handle firearms and learn the laws.”
Recent attendance has surged as the gun control debate has stirred some leaders to ask for legislation banning high-powered rifles and about 2,200 specific firearms being protected for public sale. The gun control debate recently reloaded after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in December left 20 children and six adults dead.
So far this year, 252 Cleveland County residents have applied for concealed carry weapons permits. That's on pace to quickly surpass last year's total of 618.
About 3,600 county resients are currently registered to carry concealed weapons, according to the Cleveland County Sheriff's Office.This story can be found here: http://www.gastongazette.com/gun-class-seeing-sharp-rise-in-interest-1.98919