§ 14-404. Issuance or refusal of permit; appeal from refusal; grounds for refusal; sheriff's fee.
(a) Upon application, the sheriff shall issue the license or permit to a resident of that county, unless the purpose of the permit is for collecting, in which case a sheriff can issue a permit to a nonresident, when the sheriff has done all of the following:
(1) Verified, before the issuance of a permit, by a criminal history background investigation that it is not a violation of State or federal law for the applicant to purchase, transfer, receive, or possess a handgun. The sheriff shall determine the criminal and background history of any applicant by accessing computerized criminal history records as maintained by the State Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation, by conducting a national criminal history records check, by conducting a check through the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), and by conducting a criminal history check through the Administrative Office of the Courts.
(2) Fully satisfied himself or herself by affidavits, oral evidence, or otherwise, as to the good moral character of the applicant.
(3) Fully satisfied himself or herself that the applicant desires the possession of the weapon mentioned for (i) the protection of the home, business, person, family or property, (ii) target shooting, (iii) collecting, or (iv) hunting.
(b) If the sheriff is not fully satisfied, the sheriff may, for good cause shown, decline to issue the license or permit and shall provide to the applicant within seven days of the refusal a written statement of the reason(s) for the refusal. An appeal from the refusal shall lie by way of petition to the chief judge of the district court for the district in which the application was filed. The determination by the court, on appeal, shall be upon the facts, the law, and the reasonableness of the sheriff's refusal, and shall be final.
(c) A permit may not be issued to the following persons:
(1) One who is under an indictment or information for or has been convicted in any state, or in any court of the United States, of a felony (other than an offense pertaining to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, or restraints of trade). However, a person who has been convicted of a felony in a court of any state or in a court of the United States and (i) who is later pardoned, or (ii) whose firearms rights have been restored pursuant to G.S. 14-415.4, may obtain a permit, if the purchase or receipt of a pistol permitted in this Article does not violate a condition of the pardon or restoration of firearms rights.
(2) One who is a fugitive from justice.
(3) One who is an unlawful user of or addicted to marijuana or any depressant, stimulant, or narcotic drug (as defined in 21 U.S.C. § 802).
(4) One who has been adjudicated mentally incompetent or has been committed to any mental institution.
(5) One who is an alien illegally or unlawfully in the United States.
(6) One who has been discharged from the Armed Forces of the United States under dishonorable conditions.
(7) One who, having been a citizen of the United States, has renounced his or her citizenship.
(8) One who is subject to a court order that:
a. Was issued after a hearing of which the person received actual notice, and at which the person had an opportunity to participate;
b. Restrains the person from harassing, stalking, or threatening an intimate partner of the person or child of the intimate partner of the person, or engaging in other conduct that would place an intimate partner in reasonable fear of bodily injury to the partner or child; and
c. Includes a finding that the person represents a credible threat to the physical safety of the intimate partner or child; or by its terms explicitly prohibits the use, attempted use, or threatened use of physical force against the intimate partner or child that would reasonably be expected to cause bodily injury.
(d) Nothing in this Article shall apply to officers authorized by law to carry firearms if the officers identify themselves to the vendor or donor as being officers authorized by law to carry firearms and provide any of the following:
(1) A letter signed by the officer's supervisor or superior officer stating that the officer is authorized by law to carry a firearm.
(2) A current photographic identification card issued by the officer's employer.
(3) A current photographic identification card issued by a State agency that identifies the individual as a law enforcement officer certified by the State of North Carolina.
(4) A current identification card issued by the officer's employer and another form of current photographic identification.
(e) The sheriff shall charge for the sheriff's services upon issuing the license or permit a fee of five dollars ($5.00).
(f) Each applicant for a license or permit shall be informed by the sheriff within 30 days of the date of the application whether the license or permit will be granted or denied and, if granted, the license or permit shall be immediately issued to the applicant.
(g) An applicant shall not be ineligible to receive a permit under subdivision (c)(4) of this section because of involuntary commitment to mental health services if the individual's rights have been restored under G.S. 122C-54.1. (1919, c. 197, s. 3; C.S., s. 5108; 1959, c. 1073, s. 2; 1969, c. 73; 1981 (Reg. Sess., 1982), c. 1395, s. 1; 1987, c. 518, s. 1; 1995, c. 487, s. 2; 2006-39, s. 1; 2006-264, s. 4; 2008-210, s. 3(a); 2009-570, s. 7; 2010-108, s. 4; 2011-2, s. 1; 2011-56, s. 2; 2011-183, s. 13; 2011-268, s. 10.)