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Lathrop resident questions process seeking permit for concealed weapon
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LATHROP – Forrest Burke wants his family protected. He worries about his wife and their three young children when he is at work. So he went to the Lathrop Police Services to apply for a concealed weapon permit for his wife’s protection when he’s away.

He told the city council Monday night that he is concerned for the safety and welfare of his wife and their three young kids when he is at work because of the “13 registered sex offenders living around the city.”

That’s one registered sex offender for every 1,313 residents in Lathrop, he said citing one statistic. In fact, he said that according to his research, at least one of these sex offenders lives just about a block from his home, which is just around City Hall.

But that was not the concern he directed to the council members. He asked why he had to go to the San Joaquin County Sheriff’s to obtain a concealed weapon permit.

“I want to know why the city does not offer this service to the city. Why do we have to go to the Sheriff’s Office?”

He was also not pleased that he had to spend an hour “answering questions here and there.

“Do we have to go to the Sheriff because of the contract?” he asked, referring to the agreement between the city and the Sheriff’s Office for Lathrop police services.

Mayor Kristy Sayles explained to Burke that “the Sheriff is the only one that can sign on a concealed weapon.”

However, since Police Chief Eric Holman was present at the meeting, the mayor asked if he could directly provide an answer to Burke’s question.

Holman confirmed that Sheriff Steve Moore “looks at every individual issue and will make that decision” of either approving or not approving an application for a concealed weapon.

However, he said that applications to carry a concealed weapon are still available for pick up at the Lathrop Police Services Office on Seventh Street in the building next to the Post Office.