More Metro women carrying concealed handguns

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Waterloo, Nebr. (WOWT) - A growing number of Metro women are taking firearm safety classes to obtain their concealed carry permits.

Teresa Wilgus and Michelle Woitzel spent their Sunday morning target shooting at The Marksman gun range in Waterloo. Both women recently completed a concealed carry class, the first step toward getting a state permit to legally carry a concealed handgun. The class includes a written exam, along with shooting instruction and a live fire test.

Michelle Woitzel told WOWT 6 News she views the right to bear arms as one of the most important rights a woman has. She said: "To be able to have the confidence of carrying a weapon and being able to protect yourself is a great right."

The Marksman offers several concealed carry classes strictly for women. Jes Ulrich, who helps train students at The Marksman, told WOWT 6 News: "The demand has been absolutely through the roof."

Ulrich is adding more classes to keep up with the growing demand. She said: "The more the public knows about firearms and firearms safety, the safer I am and the safer my children are."

Almost all of the ladies who take these classes have protection for themselves and their families on their mind. Michelle Woitzel is a mother. She told WOWT 6 News: "I don't wan to be a victim. I want to be able to conceal a weapon and be in control of any situation."

Gun Range
After completing their firearms class, the women must complete a full background check from the Nebraska State Patrol before they can obtain their concealed carry permit.

Concealed carry laws vary from state to state, and not all states honor other states' permits. For example, some Iowa permits are not valid in Nebraska.

More information about Nebraska's laws is available on the Nebraska State Patrol website.

More information about Iowa's laws is available here.