(TX) We go armed


January 4, 2003, 12:58 PM
We go armed

By Allison Pollan
The Facts

Published January 04, 2003

Like many women during the holidays, Sandra Kozak received jewelry from her husband. He also gave her a semiautomatic Bersa Thunder .380 pistol.

Kozak, 24, said her husband gave her the gun so she could protect herself against intruders. She is often at their Freeport home alone with their two young children during his extended shifts at work.

“I’m having to stay at home with two babies,” Kozak said. “It’s just for my safety because there was a break-in next door to where we live.”

Kozak, who never had shot a gun until a private lesson Friday, plans to apply for a concealed handgun license, and next week she plans to take the required class to obtain it.

If her license is approved by the state, Kozak will join the ranks of Brazoria County’s more than 4,100 concealed handgun license owners.

Currently, there are more than 222,800 concealed handgun licenses active in the state, 4,174 of which are in Brazoria County, according to Department of Public Safety records.

Brazoria County is among Texas counties with the most licensed gun holders per capita.

Slightly more than one in every 100 adults in Texas can legally carry a pistol. In Brazoria, Galveston and Montgomery counties that ratio is three in every 100 adults.

According to December DPS statistics, cities having the most active concealed handgun licenses include Alvin, with 815 licenses; Pearland, with 1,215; the Lake Jackson area, with almost 600 and the Angleton area with about 420. The Freeport area, which includes the cities of Jones Creek, Oyster Creek, Surfside Beach and Quintana, had almost 600 permits, state records indicate.

The Brazoria area had 253 active licenses, the Sweeny area had 121, the Danbury area had 52, the Manvel area had 140, the Rosharon area had 143 and the Clute and Richwood area had about 170.

To obtain a concealed handgun license, Texas residents must pay a $140 fee, provide identification and fingerprints and take a handgun course.

Anyone with a felony conviction, certain misdemeanor convictions, pending criminal charges, drug or alcohol dependency or certain psychological diagnoses can not get a license. Also, people with defaults on taxes, governmental fees, student loans or child support are not eligible for a concealed handgun license.

Area law enforcement officers said while the numbers may be high, they have not encountered problems because of people carrying concealed handguns.

“The licensed handgun owner ... has not created a problem, to the best of my knowledge, in Brazoria County so far,” said Charles Wagner, chief deputy for the Brazoria County Sheriff’s Department.

Wagner attributed the high number of licensed handgun owners to the county’s rural nature.

“You have the people that are out in the countryside, out where the roads are a little more lonely,” Wagner said. “They might feel they want the gun along for protection.”

Wagner said the county’s significant number of outdoor sportsmen also might be a cause for some concealed handgun licenses.

“They’ve got licenses so they don’t have to worry about carrying the gun back and forth to the range,” he said.

Alvin Police Chief Mike Merkel agreed sports enthusiasts and people seeking protection were the key component for the county’s high number of licenses.

“I think one of America’s No. 1 fears is the fear of being victimized,” Merkel said. “We spend a lot of money buying security-related items or equipment ... and there are many of us that have never been victimized, but it’s a preventative kind of measure we use to feel good about minimizing the risk, should there be a risk.”

Merkel said Alvin’s high number of licenses also might be because Alvin Community College teaches handgun licensing classes.

Gary Broadus, who teaches one-day handgun license courses in Clute, said more than 3,000 people have taken his courses since 1996.

“The main reason I’ve seen people get the license is the right to go ahead and carry the gun in the car while traveling,” Broadus said.

Broadus said the majority of people who take the class are men aged 35 to 40, but women are increasingly becoming licensed.

After Sandra Kozak fired her first rounds into the target, each bullet hitting within the target’s chest area, she said she was glad for the experience.

“I was nervous,” Kozak said. “It gave me a little rush.”


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Walther P99
January 4, 2003, 06:41 PM
Texas rules!!!

January 4, 2003, 06:46 PM
Cool article!


January 4, 2003, 07:23 PM
Small town Texas is a very dangerous place for the criminal element, but that's probably the case in any state that regards its citizens as responsible adults.

Double Naught Spy
January 4, 2003, 07:42 PM
If he loved her, he would not have given her a discount gun.

Texas has some of the toughest hurdles to get through for approval, but once approved, life is great.

Unfortunately, many of the folks practice no more than is required to qualify for the shooting portion of the CHL class. Some people who come to renew empty out the hollowpoint ammo they loaded in 4 years prior when they last qualified. In that 4 years they haven't been shooting and haven't even necessarily maintained their guns.

Owning a gun is a start. Learning how to use it proficiently is a whole other matter.

January 4, 2003, 07:44 PM
Yes, Texas does rule :)


January 4, 2003, 07:57 PM
Hey ya all!! Don't ever mess with TEXAS!!!

January 4, 2003, 08:37 PM

So, why are you in NY...? :)

January 4, 2003, 08:41 PM
Because that is where my wife is!;)

January 4, 2003, 08:55 PM
I’m of the opinion that every man should buy his Significant Other at least one firearm. Shows you care about her safety and well being even when you can't personally be around to ensure it.

January 4, 2003, 09:04 PM
Good for Texas!

But on the otherhand they are hell on guns if you don't have a permit.

Good Shooting

January 4, 2003, 09:21 PM
Too bad the People's Republic of Massachusetts couldn't get the eyes of Texas upon us so WE could carry too! Think how the criminals would feel...:D

January 4, 2003, 09:24 PM
“It’s just for my safety because there was a break-in next door to where we live.”

It's too bad that it usually takes something like that for people to think about it.

Standing Wolf
January 4, 2003, 10:06 PM
Keep up the good work, Texans!

4v50 Gary
January 4, 2003, 10:25 PM
O.K., since Oleg has opened THR, we've got Boy Scouts on the march to occupy Canada and to raise the American Flag there. The Scouts are saving the Canadians from themselves. Girls are going too to sell them cookies. It'll pay for the Canadian snipers who support our troops. Besides, since the cookie are from American bakeries, it's good for our workers.

Now, what do we have to do to get the Texans to invade and liberate California? Would one Ranger be too many to send to restore order? I'll pay for the first bale of hay.

January 5, 2003, 12:06 AM
Gee Gary, do you think the gubmint of the PRK would object to a few hundred armed Texicans coming in and telling them how to straten out that place?

David Scott
January 5, 2003, 09:12 AM
Doube Naught Spy said:
If he loved her, he would not have given her a discount gun.

This brings to mind the "Saturday Night Special" issue. When inexpensive guns are gone, only the rich will be armed. Perhaps the Bersa was all the fellow could afford. Besides, I've seen Bersas praised on TFL -- there is a difference between "inexpensive" and "cheap".

January 5, 2003, 09:33 AM
Along the lines of "CHEAP" guns. A friend gave me a Raven 25 as a gag gift about 15 years ago. He died shortly afterwards. Hmmm
I kept the gun as a reminder of him, and have shot around 500 rounds through it. No failures...ever...and out to about 7 yds I am as accurate with it as I am my Sigs or Glocks.

Double Naught Spy
January 5, 2003, 09:54 AM
David Scott, maybe that was all the guy could afford? Maybe you mean to suggest that was all the guy could afford to spend on a gun for his wife AFTER the jewelry he got her?

I think the husband could afford a better gun, if not immediately, then through layaway. It isn't as if the guy sold a kidney to be able to afford the Bersa.

There is just some really weird sentiment there when a husband buys his wife some jewelry and a discount .380 Bersa. The jewelry is to make her happy and the discount gun is for protection. Either the husband is clueless about self defense or his values are askew in regard to how to take care of his family.

If you can splurge on jewelry, then you can afford to buy better emergency gear and that is exactly what the gun was purchased for, an emergency. Few people ever get a chance to advance their gun training in regard to learning to handle malfunctions or improve marksmanship during a gun fight. Working malfunctions may be one of the last things she attempts to do.

January 5, 2003, 10:14 AM
Let's see...one out of every 100 Texans has CHL. Three out of every 100 in Brazoria County. Those statistics are low and hard to keep up with.

What we need is 100% participation. :D That would be easy to remember and it would be a very, very effective deterent against crime in Texas.

Doing my part........ :)

January 5, 2003, 10:50 AM
A Bersa beats a poke in the eye.:p

January 5, 2003, 11:59 AM
The only LEO I ever saw packing a Colt SAA was a Texan at the 4 States Fair in Texarkana. Somehow in the past 30 years, I've forgotten what department he belonged to....

I need to get back to Texas.

January 5, 2003, 08:46 PM
To obtain a concealed handgun license, Texas residents must pay a $140 fee, provide identification and fingerprints and take a handgun course.
Let's see ... cost of the gun (cheap one) PLUS cost of the carry fee, PLUS cost of the required course... adds up to quite a sum.

That one hundred forty dollars PLUS the required class (what are they in TX? $50 to $100?) adds up to a much better gun.

Too bad the gov't has to take its cut before it will allow her to exercise a basic human right.


ps, in WA state the fee is $60, with no requisite training requirement. Better than TX, not as good as VT.

That a free citizen should have to go before a committee, hat in hand, and pray for permission to bear arms - fantastic! Arm your daughter, sir, and pay no attention to petty bureaucrats. -- Robert Heinlein

January 6, 2003, 06:33 AM

And some classes do not include the photograph or the fingerprints. That can add another $10-$50.

However, if you are a senior citizen (is it 65 y/o?) or can prove you are indigent, then you can pay a lesser state fee.

So, let's all celebrate at our increased freedom (being able to carry legally) as another lost right is changed into an expensive privilege. :fire:
- - - - -

"...they are hell on guns if you don't have a permit."

Yeah, I guess that's usually so. But it depends upon the officer and his opinion of the circumstances.

- A former friend of mine was stopped for speeding. (mistake 1)

- He got out of his truck before the officer told him to. (mistake 2)

- He dropped his .38 snub nose out of his belt. The little J-frame bounced off his boot and went skittering across the pavement right out into traffic. (mistake 3)

- He rushed to pick up the gun just as the officer got out of his car. (mistake 4)

The officer yelled at him not to touch the gun and, at the same time waved traffic away from the two of them (and the gun).

After ensuring their mutual safety, the officer retrieved the handgun and quite calmly gave the dummy some sage advice. He unloaded the J-frame, had the dummy put the shells in his pocket and the handgun back in the truck.

Then gave him a written warning (not a ticket) for the speeding offense!

Now THAT's a "Peace Officer!" ;)

(Just another reason while I'd never be a cop!!) :)

January 6, 2003, 06:46 AM
I am getting ready to renew Mine and 4 friends are going to get thiers:D

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