Long lines for gun buyers

Published: Nov. 29, 2012 at 11:13 PM HST|Updated: Nov. 30, 2012 at 2:24 PM HST
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Jose Cesneros
Jose Cesneros
Jake Stewart
Jake Stewart
Harvey Gerwig
Harvey Gerwig

HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Gun registrations on Oahu are headed toward record numbers, resulting in long lines at for buyers seeking permits for their firearms.

During the past several weeks, gun owners they've had to wait up to three hours -- and sometimes even longer -- to register rifles and handguns at the Honolulu Police Department's downtown headquarters.

"I showed up at 5:30 in the morning and I thought I would be the first one. But as it turned out, I was at least the 11th person," said Jose Cesneros of Ewa.

"There was actually someone here at 4 o'clock in the morning camping out .. with their lounge chair, breakfast and what not."

Kaneohe resident Jake Stewart said it took him a total of 5-and-a-half hours to obtain a permit for a handgun.

"When I got here at 10:30 in the morning I found a line that extended all the way past the security stand and I knew I was in for a long day," he said.

According to the HPD, nearly 21,000 gun permits were issued on Oahu through October. That's likely to surpass last year's record of 23,000 gun registrations.

Gun advocates say the uptick is due to fears that President Obama will restrict gun ownership ... despite assurances by administration officials that there are no plans to do so.

"This year, now that he's in a lame duck presidency in the second term, there's even more concern that there's going to be a reinstatement of Clinton-type gun bans," said Harvey Gerwig, president of the Hawaii Rifle Association.

The Hawaii Rifle Association says it is making a push to add more workers at the HPD's downtown headquarters to process permits. It also is asking the HPD to allow gun registrations at other police stations.

"They should have different stations throughout the city to do this," said Kenson Georges of Makaha.

"Ever since the elections, everyone started buying firearms and lines just got longer from then on."

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