Last year we reported that a company was planning to bring a gun to market that, when folded away, looks somewhat like a smartphone, especially when tucked into a pocket. The idea is that it would be concealed as required by law for those with concealed carry permits, but without being completely hidden.
Anti-gun activists, including Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY), were up in arms over the gun, which didn’t even exist at the time, calling for government investigations of the product.
Now, this story from fox45now.com says the smartphone-gun might finally be coming to market this summer.
The news channel talked to Kirk Kjellberg, the creator of the Ideal Conceal pistol. Kjellberg said he created it after an incident at a restaurant in his home state of Minnesota and wanted a better way to conceal it, the story says.
“I just decided there’s gotta be a better way to carry,” Kjellberg said in the story, “and I was just looking around and noticed everyone had a smartphone, so why no make a pistol that would look like that?”
The story says he spent a year engineering the folding pistol and got approval from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
“As long as it has (a rifled) barrel and cannot be fired in closed position and they will classify it as a pistol,” Kjellberg said in the story.
The news channel also spoke to a concealed carry expert who were less than enthusiastic about the pistol idea, which is essentially a folding, two-shot derringer.
“I can’t speak for all others but I wouldn’t touch it with a 10-foot pole,” said Jeff Pedro, who works at SimTrainer Indoor Range and Training Center. He served as police officer for 25 years and has been a firearms instructor for 30, the story says.
“Overall, my professional opinion is it’s just a bad idea from a safety perspective, and also from an access perspective. The inability to get out, get it functional in a rapid situation would be extremely difficult.”
Pedro also said in the story that the fact that it’s concealed as another object, in this case, a smartphone, could be problematic for police.
“I think there’s potential that some people in the underworld, criminals might get that and…try to dupe or try to disguise the gun that way,” Pedro said in the story, “But police aren’t going to – if the gun were to be released, police officers would be alerted to it and they’d pretty much be checking any cellphone that resembled the size and shape of that particular device.”
Kjellberg countered by saying, “It would be easier to shoot someone in a nefarious way with a regular pistol than it would be with ours.”
He also said the company has taken extra steps to ensure the gun is detected by X-ray machines so it cannot slip by security checks.
He said that Ideal Conceal has some orders to fill before the guns will be eventually mass produced and sold to the public, possibly by the end of the summer. It will sell for about $500.