IC 35-47-2 regulates the carrying of handguns and provides a procedure for obtaining a license to carry a handgun. Part of the procedure is that the Superintendent of the Indiana State Police Department makes a determination that the applicant is a “proper person” within the meaning of IC 35-47-1-7. There are a number of criteria for being a “proper person” — mostly referencing the nature of one’s prior criminal history and mental stability. One of the criteria under the current law is that the applicant must not have a record of being an “alcohol abuser” which is defined under IC 35-47-1-2 as “an individual who has had two (2) or more alcohol related offenses, any one (1) of which resulted in conviction by a court or treatment in an alcohol abuse facility within
three (3) years prior to the date of the application.”
SB 36, introduced by Sen. Tomes, would make alcohol abusers eligible as “proper persons” to obtain a handgun license. (Drug abusers would still be ineligible.) Additionally, the licensing process includes a review of the application by the law enforcement officer receiving the application. Sen. Tomes’ bill would forbid the application itself or a subsequent interview by the investigator from questioning the applicant about “any criminal convictions the applicant may have for operating a vehicle under the influence of alcohol in violation of the law concerning operating a vehicle while intoxicated.”
Nothing mixes quite like handguns and alcohol.