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Lake County Sheriff's Office changes response to FOID revocations after Aurora shooting

Aurora police released recordings of 911 calls and emergency response communication from the shooting at Henry Pratt Co., where six employees, including the gunman, were killed and five police officers were wounded Feb. 15.
Aurora police released recordings of 911 calls and emergency response communication from the shooting at Henry Pratt Co., where six employees, including the gunman, were killed and five police officers were wounded Feb. 15.

In response to a deadly shooting in Aurora last month, the Lake County Sheriff’s Office will be taking proactive measures to ensure that firearms stay out of the hands of those with revoked privileges, according to a news release sent Monday.

“Our hearts go out to the city of Aurora [and] the victims of the tragedy, and we are grateful for the brave police officers who risked their lives to save others,” Lake County Sheriff John Idleburg said in the release. “I will do everything in my power to reduce the likelihood of such a tragedy in Lake County.”

On Feb. 18, a gunman killed five workers at the Henry Pratt Co. in Aurora after learning of his termination, and he eventually was gunned down by police, authorities have said.

The gunman applied for a firearm owner’s identification card in January 2014 after a background check failed to flag a 1995 aggravated assault conviction in Mississippi.

Illinois State Police said he lied on the application when asked, “Have you ever been convicted of a felony?”

The gunman’s FOID card was revoked after he applied for a firearm concealed carry license in March 2014.

Under Illinois law, when an individual’s FOID card is revoked, he or she must surrender the card and complete a firearm disposition record within 48 hours of receiving notice of the revocation.

The firearm disposition record allows a revoked cardholder to transfer his or her weapon to a valid cardholder or a local law enforcement agency.

If the revoked cardholder fails to comply with these requirements, the county sheriff or law enforcement agency may petition the court to issue a search warrant for a FOID card and any firearms in their possession, but this is not required by law.

Under the Lake County Sheriff’s Office’s new procedures, if the Illinois State Police notifies the sheriff’s office that an individual’s FOID card or concealed carry license is revoked, detectives will be assigned to make contact with that individual.

Lake County officials then will take steps to recover the physical identification cards and ensure firearms no longer are in the possession of the person with revoked privileges. Sheriff’s officials also will be reviewing all past letters issued by Illinois State Police dating to 2016, according to the release.

“My administration is continually evaluating ways we can take proactive approaches, ensuring our communities are kept safe, and the measures we are taking regarding FOID and CCL revocations will help us keep a handle on those who are not allowed to have access to firearms,” Idleburg said.

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