Character references???


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Caliban
October 1, 2008, 01:44 PM
Background: I put in for a pistol permit in NYC (they do exist! there's just no ccw unless you "know someone") and they told me to call in two months.

Today was two months. I just talked to my "investigator" and he says I need to submit additional documentation- three "character references" from people who are unrelated to me, signed and notarized. What a joke. There was no mention of character references on the application form.

Anyone have any experience with these? I will not have a problem coming up with three friends, but I'm wondering what to tell them to say. And also, I wanted to vent. Do other states do this?

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jpruitt
October 1, 2008, 01:52 PM
Not for CCW, but I've seen it on several job applications. I think it's a ridiculous outdated throwback to the way things were in previous generations. Unfortunately, a lot of people these days just don't know people outside of family and work, especially if they've moved around more than a couple of times. This isn't the 1950s where neighbors come over for tea or to borrow a cup of sugar. I don't know any of my neighbors, and don't really have any friends or acquaintances outside of family and current or former coworkers.

Besides, it's a stupid question. No one would list someone as a reference if the person was going to say bad things about them. Is that the point, to weed out the dumb applicants :D ? Or to see if you're such a jerk that you don't know three people who will say good things about you?

Soldiersurfs
October 1, 2008, 01:55 PM
So they do exist .... its just easier to get a secret clearance :confused:
Sounds like a stall tactic to discourage people

Caliban
October 1, 2008, 02:16 PM
let me clarify- what i applied for is a "premises residence" license, which allows me to have the gun in my home, and also to transport it cased & unloaded to and from a range. i cannot carry it loaded at any time.

nyc does have a ccw permit, but you can only get it if you are very rich and/or famous; known nyc ccw holders include robert deniro, donald trump, howard stern, etc.

they will actually turn you down for a ccw even if you're the bank guy who carries the night deposits, unless you can "prove" that you're in danger. which is the most ass-backwards system i've ever heard of: you can't get a ccw unless you can prove that it's too late!

LostinJersey
October 1, 2008, 02:18 PM
It is required for a Rifle and Shotgun purchaser ID card and everytime you apply for a permit to purchase a pistol in Jersey. The PD sends out a letter to the reference which asks how long they know you, what their relationship is with you, are you a drug user or a have problems with alcohol, do they think you are responsible enough to own firearms.

jpruitt
October 1, 2008, 02:25 PM
known nyc ccw holders include robert deniro, donald trump, howard stern, etc.

Don't forget Chuck Schumer :rolleyes:

Ironic, isn't it.

Loosedhorse
October 1, 2008, 10:14 PM
Standard delay and discourage tactic. Don't let it bother you.

Warn any potential character reference writer that they might receive a call saying something along the lines of, "Okay, but if he ever harms somebody, they're going to sue the pants off you because you let him get a gun." Standard.

I used to live in Alameda Co, CA. I enquired about a CCW (I was just married, and suddenly had something I needed to protect). Besides the character references, I would need a psychiatrist to "certify" that I was not a danger--wonder if I could've convinced the psych that any damages if he guessed wrong would be covered by malpractice insurance?

Actually, I KNOW a few psychiatrists (don't ask), so that part would have been easy. Then they mentioned the $ million bond....

indiandave
October 2, 2008, 09:22 AM
When I applied for my permit in Pa. You had to put down two people as references. I got my permit and the sheriffs dept. never contacted them. I herd this is not unusual.

The Lone Haranguer
October 2, 2008, 09:34 AM
Unfortunately, a lot of people these days just don't know people outside of family and work, especially if they've moved around more than a couple of times. [...] I don't know any of my neighbors, and don't really have any friends or acquaintances outside of family and current or former coworkers.

I would be in trouble if I ever moved to NYC. :uhoh:

Standing Wolf
October 2, 2008, 09:36 AM
Where does it say anything about references in the Second Amendment?

LKB3rd
October 2, 2008, 09:36 AM
Some towns in CT will ask for this, but the law says that you only need to fill out certain forms from the state, and while towns are allowed to ask for more, they are not allowed to deny your permit based on your refusal to give these things.
I have heard of police in some towns showing up unannounced to interview neighbors about your permit application. "By the way, your next door neighbor is getting his pistol permit... ever seen him peering out the windows from a darkened room at night?"

SkunkApe
October 2, 2008, 09:41 AM
When I lived in Michigan, Wayne county added a requirement to provide references to their CCW permit process. I'd write them something like this:

Dear Sirs and Madams,

I have known John Smith since 1992. He is a business associate, as well as a personal friend. He is reliable, rational, moral, and excercises good judgment in all situations. I offer, without reservation, my highest endorsment of his character.

Sincerely,

Skunk P. Ape

I doubt anybody actually read these in Michigan. As what said above, I think its just one more hoop they make you jump through.

Good luck.

Speedo66
October 2, 2008, 03:59 PM
In NY make sure, and this may involve some embarrassing questions, that none of your references have had any convictions other than traffic offenses.

I have heard of permit applications being turned down if the reference had a record.

If you know any police/peace officers, an attorney, a bank officer (must be bonded, so no convictions), or other such occupation you'll be ahead of the game.

Caliban
October 2, 2008, 04:15 PM
that sounds idiotic but completely plausible. looks like i'm developing a nice list of "warnings" for my references-to-be.

man, if i knew cops, i'd probably have my license already, and i wouldn't be asking the internet for advice...

Diamondback6
October 4, 2008, 01:34 AM
This is part of why, in the absence of friends, I've tried to remain on very good terms with my ex-professors from my college days.:D

Steve Raacke
October 4, 2008, 02:23 AM
Jpruit said Not for CCW, but I've seen it on several job applications. I think it's a ridiculous outdated throwback to the way things were in previous generations. Unfortunately, a lot of people these days just don't know people outside of family and work, especially if they've moved around more than a couple of times. This isn't the 1950s where neighbors come over for tea or to borrow a cup of sugar. I don't know any of my neighbors, and don't really have any friends or acquaintances outside of family and current or former coworkers.

I couldn't agree more. I doubt I'd be able to come up with 3 references I could put on a gun permit application. Heck, I can't come up with 3 for a job applicaton.

marklbucla
October 4, 2008, 12:17 PM
Given the environment that I'm in, I tell noone about my "extracurriculars" out of fear that it will hurt my chances at finishing my degree. For me, finding 3 non-relatives who are local is going to be fairly tough.

Caliban
October 4, 2008, 05:01 PM
just got the official documentation in the mail:

"Three (3) notarized character reference letters, acknowledging that they are aware that you are applying for a handgun license as well as attesting to your good character written by anyone who has known you for five (5) years or more. Family members and non-citizens are excluded from providing the required letters. If your letter is written by an employer, clergyman or any other prominent person, it must be on their letterhead. ALL LETTERS MUST HAVE A PHONE NUMBER & ADDRESS THAT THE WRITER CAN BE REACHED AT."

additionally, they stuck me with a few more requirements:

"A letter from your employer on company letterhead stating that you are employed with the company, the date the employment began and your occupation OR 2 current pay stubs."

"Copy of your Social Security Card."

"A notarized statement indicating you have read and understand Penal Law Articles 35 (use of deadly force), 265 (criminal possession of a weapon) and 400 (responsibilities of a handgun licensee)."

"Dept. of Motor Vehicles driving abstract."

the last one is a real pain because it's going to take "up to two weeks" for it to arrive in the mail....

Quiet
October 4, 2008, 05:34 PM
In CA, you need seven character references (can not be relatives).

Out of the seven, three have to write letters of reference attesting to your good moral character and acknowledging your request for a CCW permit.

The four that don't write letters are mailed a background check questionaire and the three that write letters recieve follow up interviews.

Also, depending on which LE department you apply to, your investigator may interview your neighbors.

marklbucla
October 4, 2008, 05:49 PM
^

What county requires all this?

Quiet
October 4, 2008, 06:05 PM
What county requires all this?
San Bernardino County Sheriff Department.

This was back in 1998-99. Don't know if it's changed.

marklbucla
October 4, 2008, 06:06 PM
In the OC, I think I had to submit 2 letters of reference. One was from my GF and the other was from my dad.

Steve Raacke
October 5, 2008, 06:46 AM
just got the official documentation in the mail:

"Three (3) notarized character reference letters, acknowledging that they are aware that you are applying for a handgun license as well as attesting to your good character written by anyone who has known you for five (5) years or more. Family members and non-citizens are excluded from providing the required letters. If your letter is written by an employer, clergyman or any other prominent person, it must be on their letterhead. ALL LETTERS MUST HAVE A PHONE NUMBER & ADDRESS THAT THE WRITER CAN BE REACHED AT."

additionally, they stuck me with a few more requirements:

"A letter from your employer on company letterhead stating that you are employed with the company, the date the employment began and your occupation OR 2 current pay stubs."

"Copy of your Social Security Card."

"A notarized statement indicating you have read and understand Penal Law Articles 35 (use of deadly force), 265 (criminal possession of a weapon) and 400 (responsibilities of a handgun licensee)."

"Dept. of Motor Vehicles driving abstract."

the last one is a real pain because it's going to take "up to two weeks" for it to arrive in the mail.... :what: Mighty Zeus!!! That is insane. Dude, seriously, go to MonsterJobs or some other job site, find another job in a jurisdiction where you are treated like a citizen and not a subject and FRAKING MOVE!!! REALLY. There is NO WAY I'd even consider doing all that. What if you had to do all that to write a letter to the editor of your local paper? What if you had to do that to BE the editor of your own paper? What if you had to do all that before you could join a local church? Throw that stuff in the trash can and keep your guns off the governments radar. If anyone asks you about why you havn't returned the paper work just tell them that you decided that it wasn't worth the hastle and you gave all of your guns to a cousin in Louisiana.

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