New Chicago Ridge site offers classes on new concealed carry law
Before Ron Pohrebny was able tolegally drive a car, the now 53-year-old has enjoyed shooting and teaching others the awesome responsibility associated with owning a firearm.
For the past 25-years, Pohrebny has worked as a firearms instructor. He is certified by the National Rifle Association and the Illinois State Police to teach concealed carry.
Pohrebny is the new owner of the former Chicago Ridge Gun Shop and Range, which is now the site for his concealed carry company, Carry Chicago, 10349 Southwest Highway. Starting Jan. 10, Pohrebny will start preparing Illinois residents for the new concealed carry laws.
“The course is a lot of basic information on firing, handling, unloading and using a firearm safely,” Pohrebny said. “It’s geared towards people’s ability and knowledge and most people getting concealed carry have been gun enthusiasts for a while.”
Starting Sunday, the state of Illinois will begin taking applications for concealed carry. Despite immense pushback from anti-gun groups, Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart and Gov. Pat Quinn, Illinois is now the last state to lift the ban on concealed carry.
For Chicago-area resident who plan on packing heat, a 16-hour training course is required. Training is broken into separate eight-hour courses. The first part of the training program focuses solely on teaching students to safely shoot, transport and stores a firearm. The second part of training deals with gun laws, specifically Illinois gun laws.
“The advantage of having my own storefront facility is the ability to work with the student’s schedule,” he said. “It’s a 16-hour course and people work so it’s hard to do 8-hours a day or the entire 16-hours in one weekend.”
The course will cost $275. In other states concealed carry courses can run as high as $300. During the Dec. 17 Chicago Ridge board meeting, Pohrebny’s license to open the storefront facility was approved.
At this point, the shooting portion of the course is done at the Harvey Police shooting range. In the future, Pohrebny is hoping to repair and reopen the range in his facility.
“I want to reopen the shooting range at the facility and open it up for my current and former students to practice drawing from a holster,” he said. “People should practice 100 times a day because if you ever do need to draw your gun you don’t want to be tugging at your holster.”
Illinois residents who have been convicted of a felony, including domestic violence, or have a criminal record are subject to denial of a FOID card and concealed carry permit. State and local law enforcement must also approve the concealed carry permit, regardless of the individual’s reason for applying. Law enforcement officials may deny a request for concealed carry is the individual has certain psychological issues or a history tied gang-related crimes.
“Are we that stupid in Chicago to not know that it’s the bad people with guns who are committing these violent crimes?” Pohrebny said. “Good people feel the need to arm themselves as long as there continues to be bad people illegally obtaining firearms.”
For more information on Carry Chicago, visit www.carrychicago.org or call 708-357-6241.