In early 2016, Murrieta Police Chief Sean Hadden was tasked by the Murrieta City Council to examine the possibility of his office issuing Concealed Carry Weapon CCW licenses. This request from the City Council was in response to an increased interest by Murrieta citizens to have the ability to protect themselves with the option to carry a concealed firearm. Presently, most CCW requests are referred to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department through a joint agreement between the Chief of Police and the Sheriff.
Chief Hadden directed staff to conduct a feasibility study on the regular issuance of Carry Concealed Weapon (CCW) licenses by checking with all of the law enforcement agencies within Riverside County. The study included a review of agency policies, practices and procedures with the issuance of CCW licenses. The study commenced in March of 2016, and concluded in June 2016.
The 2016 study showed that some of the municipalities within Riverside County referred those wanting a CCW license to the Riverside County Sheriff's Department for processing, while other agencies processed requests internally. The study showed that the Riverside County Sheriff's Department averaged ten CCW license applications from Murrieta residents per month, and had an average processing time (from application to the issuance of the license) of 18 to 22 months.
As a result of the feasibility study, Chief Hadden authorized a voluntary, alternative CCW test study with a small group of individuals to determine if:
- The CCW license process could be completed in a reasonable amount of time
- If the overall cost for CCW issuance would be affordable for residents of Murrieta
- Would the program be cost neutral for the city of Murrieta.
The test cases revealed the average time to process a CCW license would be 3 to 4 months, and the estimated total cost for the CCW applicants would be approximately $761. Chief Hadden presented his findings at the April 4, 2017 City Council Meeting with his intent to move forward with the program.
Chief Hadden's goal with the voluntary, alternative Carry Concealed Weapon (CCW) License Program is to provide this service to the citizens of Murrieta, while in turn reducing the CCW licensing and workload responsibilities for our partners with the Riverside County Sheriff's Department. Murrieta residents may choose to apply through the regular process with the Riverside County Sheriff's Department or they may use the alternative, voluntary program through the Murrieta Police Department for their CCW licensing needs.