Steep drop in Minnesota gun permits issued after record years

After back-to-back years at record levels, the number of gun permits issued in Minnesota fell back to a more normal level last year.

Wednesday, the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA) released its annual permit to carry report for 2022, showing that a total of 65,257 permits were issued last year.

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That’s a steep drop from the past two years, when a record-high 106,488 permits were issued in 2021, breaking the record of 96,554 that was set in 2020. However, last year’s number is more on par with the numbers prior to 2020, when an average of 57,508 permits were issued per year from 2017-2019, including 66,053 in 2018.

As usual, Hennepin County issued the most permits last year (8,637) by a wide margin, followed by Anoka (4,696), Dakota (4,532), Ramsey (3,950) and Washington (3,865) counties.

The BCA’s data also shows that only 177 permits were suspended, 27 revoked, 1,414 voided and 866 denied last year. That moves the total number of valid permits currently in the state to 395,626, although the state doesn’t track permits to buy guns, so it doesn’t indicate how many Minnesotans have firearms.

While the number of crimes committed by permit-holders reached a record-high last year (4,199), the percentage of permit-holders who committed a crime stayed consistent with past years at just 1% and more than 60% of the crimes committed were DWIs or other traffic offenses, the BCA says.

Click here to read the full 2022 report.