The Scioto County Sheriff’s Office has released more information regarding the indictment of Jerry Robert Hayes, a Lucasville weapons instructor now charged with 25 counts of falsification regarding concealed carry permit training.
According to the sheriff’s office, their investigation, which began in early November according to their previous statements, revealed that over an extended period of time Hayes was selling false training certificates needed in order for private citizens to obtain concealed carry weapon permits from the sheriff’s office.
Hayes allegedly was selling the training certificates for $50-$75 each. Although Ohio law mandates persons receiving a CCW permit receive a certain amount of firearms training, the sheriff’s office alleges Hayes was selling the certificates after spending just as little as a few minutes in a parking lot with students, apparently just long enough to exchange cash and the bogus certificates.
The sheriff’s office did report Hayes spent at least a few hours giving genuine instruction to at least a few students.
Along with Hayes, Portsmouth resident Jake E. Buckler, was arrested and charged with eight counts of falsification, again relating to CCW training certificates. Officials allege Buckler was obtaining training certificates from Hayes and selling them at his place of employment, the name of which was not released.
As a direct result of the sheriff’s office investigation, 27 concealed carry permits have been revoked, six applications denied, and numerous unused bad training certificates had been identified as of Friday.
The sheriff’s office said the investigation is continuing.
Scioto County Chief Deputy Todd Miller, who led the investigation into Hayes’ alleged activities, cautioned people who are thinking of taking an Ohio concealed carry class to ask questions and make sure they know they are paying for proper classes.
According to Miller, classes must include six hours of classroom instruction regarding all aspects of Ohio’s concealed carry laws, two hours of handling a weapon and identifying weapon parts. Training must include live firing of a weapon. The class also must have an exam at the conclusion of the training.
Rules are different for law enforcement officers as well as former or current military personnel. All persons hoping to gain a concealed carry permit must pass a criminal background check and not have been deemed mentally incompetent, among other requirements.
In the event you have a current permit and believe that you did not receive the proper eight hours of training contact Miller at (740) 355-1512.
According to the Attorney General’s website, there are roughly 21 concealed carry instructors in Scioto County certified by the Ohio Peace Officer Training Commission. There are an unknown number of other instructors certified by groups such as the National Rifle Association.
Statistics on the Ohio Attorney General site state in 2017 Ohio sheriff’s offices issued 131,345 regular CCW permits, including 77,281 new licenses and 54,064 renewals. The state denied just over 1,200 permit applications.
Locally, in Scioto County, the sheriff’s office last year issued 711 concealed carry permits, with the vast majority of those, 509, being renewals. They denied applications in only three instances.