Record number of Minnesota gun permits issued in 2021

Minnesota has issued a record number of firearm permits in back-to-back years.


More Minnesotans received their permits to carry in 2021 than any other year since the state’s Personal Protection Act was enacted in 2003.

The Bureau of Criminal Apprehension released data Tuesday showing that Minnesotans applied for 110,078 permits. Sheriffs issued a total of 106,488 firearm permits in 2021. That’s up 10% compared to 2020 when 96,554 permits were issued, which was until now the all-time record.

This means Minnesota has issued a record number of firearm permits in back-to-back years. For comparison, just 51,404 permits were issued in 2019, less than half of last year’s total.

The top five counties where permits were issued in 2021 include:

  • Hennepin: 16,888
  • Ramsey: 7,467
  • Anoka: 6,988
  • Dakota: 6,744
  • Washington: 5,761

Sheriffs reported that there were 176 permits suspended, 40 revoked, 1,165 voided and 1,627 denied in 2021.

While the number of crimes committed by individuals with permits was also at its highest level last year, with 3,863 crimes, only 1% of permit holders committed a crime, which is consistent with previous years.

Of these, just 2% were crimes where firearms were used in furtherance of a crime. The majority were DWIs or other traffic-related offenses.

The total number of valid permit holders in Minnesota now stands at 387,013. Minnesota does not track permits to purchase firearms.

This rapid increase in prospective gun owners coincides with a dramatic rise in violent crime over the last two years in the Twin Cities.


Pafoua Yang

Pafoua Yang is a reporter for Alpha News. She has worked as an on-air reporter for stations across the Twin Cities.