Online CCW Instruction in Colorado - A Word of Caution
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Online CCW Instruction in Colorado - A Word of Caution

This is a discussion on Online CCW Instruction in Colorado - A Word of Caution within the Colorado Discussion and Firearm News forums, part of the Firearms Discussion by State category; A word of caution to those who may see ads or deals for online CCW instruction and certification as we ...

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    Default Online CCW Instruction in Colorado - A Word of Caution

    A word of caution to those who may see ads or deals for online CCW instruction and certification as we see a massive increase in interest in concealed carry in Colorado - many sheriffs' offices across the state will not honor an instruction certificate obtained by an online training company.

    I don't mean to start or continue a debate over online vs in-person instruction, only to caution potential applicants about a pitfall we are encountering more often with students who have taken an online course advertised on a website or sold through "Deals" sites. I've found at least 11 counties throughout the state (both those known for being gun-friendly and, well, not so much) who've stated they will not accept online certification. Regardless of where you may come down on the issue, it pays to know what you're getting when you see a $10 price tag or promises of instruction in the convenience of your home.

    As with all important purchases, research, interview, and make wise decisions, friends.

    In the spirit of full disclosure, we are a training company in Northern Colorado. We believe strongly in enabling citizens to fully exercise their Constitutional rights and safely own, use, and care for firearms.

    Be safe, shoot straight, and carry on.
    Tall Guns LLC
    Colorado and Utah Concealed Carry Instructors
    NRA Certified Instructors, Range Safety Officers, and Appointed Training Counselors

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    I did an online class and the Adams County Sheriff would not accept it. Complete BS but what can you do...

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    Quote Originally Posted by Deserteagle View Post
    I did an online class and the Adams County Sheriff would not accept it. Complete BS but what can you do...
    Well, you could sue to get them to comply with state law. Not sure there would be anything to gain other than getting them to comply. Might at least get your expenses back though.

    18-12-203. Criteria for obtaining a permit
    (1) Beginning May 17, 2003, except as otherwise provided in this section, a sheriff shall issue a permit to carry a concealed handgun to an applicant who:

    ............

    (h) Demonstrates competence with a handgun by submitting:

    ...............

    (VI) A training certificate from a handgun training class obtained within the ten years preceding submittal of the application. The applicant shall submit the original training certificate or a photocopy thereof that includes the original signature of the class instructor. In obtaining a training certificate from a handgun training class, the applicant shall have discretion in selecting which handgun training class to complete.
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    In fact I would start with writing a letter to the sheriff. If you don't want to do it I will.


    Edit: This was my 222nd post.
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    Well his BS reason for not accepting it was that I "could not prove that I was the one sitting behind the computer taking the online class". Even though my name was printed on the certificate.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Deserteagle View Post
    Well his BS reason for not accepting it was that I "could not prove that I was the one sitting behind the computer taking the online class". Even though my name was printed on the certificate.
    That is a B.S. reason. If it was a classroom training how could he prove that you were actually the one sitting in the class. Or even that the training certificate is real. There is a bit of an honor system here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Beau View Post
    That is a B.S. reason. If it was a classroom training how could he prove that you were actually the one sitting in the class. Or even that the training certificate is real. There is a bit of an honor system here.
    That's the Adams County Sheriff for you

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    Just sent an email to Sheriff Darr. I am anxiously awaiting his response.
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    So I received a response to my letter. It was exactly what I expected it to be. I'm going to write another one today. Below is the first letter I sent and their response.
    Sheriff Darr,

    Hello, my name is Beau. I am writing to you to discuss information I received on your policy regarding acceptable training to qualify for a CHP. The information I received stated that you rejected a training certificate from an applicant who had received training through an on-line course. The reason given to this person was that they could not prove that they were the one sitting behind the computer taking the training. That position is in violation of Colorado state law.

    The relevant section of Colorado Revised Statutes that deals with the issuance of concealed handgun permits is C.R.S. 18-12-203.. In this section it states that the applicant has discretion of selecting which handgun class to complete. By refusing to accept on-line training as meeting the requirement for a CHP your office is violating Colorado state law. By doing so the sheriff’s office may be opening itself to legal action.

    I would ask that you change your policy to accept on-line training certificates in order to bring the policy in accordance with state law. Thank you for your time.

    Sincerely,
    Beau

    Mr. Beau,

    Respectfully, the ACSO position rejecting on-line firearms training in applications for a CHP is well within established law and is supported by the Colorado Sheriff’s Association. Additionally,

    · Online courses cannot physically prove that a student “demonstrates competence” with a firearm (CRS 18-12-203 (1) (h)).
    · Applicants cannot prove the person signing the on-line class certificate was actually a “certified instructor” or was the person who provided the instruction.
    · The online “instructor” cannot prove that the person attending the class on-line is actually who he or she claims to be.
    · The National Rifle Association has stated they will not support any online class using NRA training credentials (please see attachment).
    · The Colorado Peace Officer Standards and Training Board has stated they will not authorize POST Certified Firearms instructors to teach on-line courses.

    Secondly, the Adams County Sheriff’s Office does not attempt to dictate to citizens which “certified” training providers they may select for training. Our stance remains: certified training providers offer training that is not on-line and meets the other statutory provisions. Prospective concealed handgun permit applicants may select a trainer from a list of current Denver metropolitan area instructors on the ACSO website or any other certified trainer they wish, provided the class meets these standards.

    Please contact me if you have further questions or need additional information.

    Ship
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    My latest reply to Adams County Sheriff.

    Mr. Shipley,

    Thank you for your response. While I do not agree with your statements regarding on-line courses (reasons listed below), I appreciate you taking the time to address my concerns and in doing so in such a timely manner.

    First of all, refusing to accept on-line training is not well within established Colorado law. The practice may be supported by the sheriffs association but that doesn't make the position legal. There are no specific training requirements listed in Colorado statute. State preemption prevents localities from making firearms laws more strict than state law.

    You stated that an on-line course can not prove that a student demonstrates competence with a handgun. There is nothing in C.R.S. that defines what is required to demonstrate competence with a handgun other than submitting a certificate from a training class. The statute does not read that the certificate must be from an approved training class or even a class that requires live fire. There are many in-seat classes that do not provide a live fire exercise. The statute does state that the applicant is able to choose what type of class to attend.

    There is a bit of an honor system when it comes to training classes. You stated that a person can not prove the person signing the certificate is a certified instructor. I ask you, how does a person prove this in an in-seat class? The person taking the class is assuming that the instructor is telling the truth that they are a certified instructor. Also when a person submits a certificate you are assuming that the certificate is valid and that the person actually attended the class. Most training certificates can be forged fairly easily.

    Regarding the NRA, it doesn't matter what they support or endorse. A course does not need to be NRA endorsed to be valid. In fact two of my family members just completed a training class for their CHP that specifically stated on the certificate that the course was not NRA endorsed.

    Your office, and a few others, may not agree with accepting on-line training but that does not matter. What does matter is that your stance is not in line with state law. In fact, a bill has been introduced recently to change the C.R.S. to make on-line training invalid for a CHP. I ask you, why would the legislature introduce a bill to make on-line training illegal if the practice of not accepting on-line training was already legal?

    My intent of my original email was simply to inform you that your practices were not in accordance with state law and that it could become a legal issue if someone so desired to make it one. If your office is okay with taking that chance so be it. Chances are that it will not become an issue but why take the chance? I personally feel that the training requirement should be done away with completely but that is a whole other discussion.

    I thank you for you're time spent discussing this issue. Thank you for your time and service.

    Sincerely,
    Beau
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