Trusted friend, single mother of two and VODA Client Shaneen Allen has a story that is all too familiar for so many people around the country. If you don’t know her story well here are some highlights:


In October 2014, Shaneen Allen was stopped in STATE OF NEW JERSEY for a minor traffic violation. During the stop, she disclosed to the New Jersey Law Enforcement Officer that she had a firearm on her person, which was secured and located in her purse. She also notified the Law Enforcement Officer that she had a Pennsylvania firearm permit. Being a very busy single mother of two and working multiple jobs she simply didn't know that her permit was not recognized in the STATE OF NEW JERSEY.


It was at this point she was arrested and not only charged with a minor traffic violation but she was also charged with Unlawful Possession of a Weapon and Unlawful Possession of hollow tip bullets (yes, in some places in this country hollow tip rounds are illegal). After the word go out and made national headlines that Shaneen Allen was arrested for simply not knowing that her permit was unrecognized by the STATE OF NEW JERSEY, the call and letters came to the Governer of the STATE OF NEW JERSEY and Pennsylvania from around the country.


Happily to say in 2015 Shaneen Allen was granted a full pardon by New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.


This is why the National Conceal Carry Reciprocity Bill is so important to firearm owners, Shooters and Gun-Fighters alike. The thing is that for many gun owners is when they buy a firearm, few people if anyone are going to inform them of the laws needed to intelligently own and operate that firearm legally - to include information on how to travel with a firearm and which states to currently avoid if you traveling with a firearm. For information on this (how to travel with a firearm) please feel free to contact me for a free consultation at:

The Congressmen that set the National Conceal Carry Reciprocity Bill in motion was North Carolina Republican Richard Hudson (thanks). We all know that the vast majority of Republicans are in support of the National Conceal Carry Reciprocity Bill, but it will need Democratic support as well. As you well know, I don’t get into politics (it hurts people). However, it doesn’t matter if you’re a Democrat or Republican; if you believe that you have the right to save your own life I urge you to talk to and send letters to your State Representative(s).


Be proactive, exercise personal accountability and responsibility and don’t look for any organization to lobby on your behalf. This is "YOUR LIFE TO LIVE", so voice your concern(s) to the Politicians and let them know that you have a right to "SHOOT TO LIVE" and support the National Reciprocity Conceal Carry Bill in the name of our Sister In Arms Shaneen Allen.

Shaneen Allen, Federal Firearms Instructor, VODA,  James McKoy and John "The Long Ranger"


Why? Because it could have easily been you locked up; missing your family, life disrupted by spending 40 days in jail and agonizing about facing a three-year mandatory prison sentence, children adversely affected, money lost and publicly shamed, and humiliated for a simply making the mistake of not knowing. I should also add that it is even more important for women to support the National Conceal Carry Reciprocity Bill, especial our African American, Latino and Asian women because you are at the greatest risk; for many times you are traveling by yourself and often times you have children with you. It is YOU not us men that are the FIRST LINE OF DEFENSE when it comes to protecting our children who are in fact our future. Women VODA believes in you and you can do this, we love you and we need you more than ever!


This is not about being "Pro-Gun" or even "Anti-Gun", this is about YOUR LIFE and your ability to "SHOOT TO LIVE". Supporting my position is the fact that Law Enforcement is not here to “Serve and Protect”, they are here and only here to seek out infractions, investigate and arrest if needed. Protecting yourself is your job. Further supporting my position, accordion to the 2015 FBI UCR Clearance rates:

  • "In the nation in 2015, 46.0 percent of violent crimes and 19.4 percent of property crimes were cleared by arrest or exceptional means."

  • "When considering clearances of violent crimes, 61.5 percent of murder offenses, 54.0 percent of aggravated assault offenses, 37.8 percent of rape offenses (revised definition), 36.2 percent of rape offenses (legacy definition), and 29.3 percent of robbery offenses were cleared. (Please note, the legacy and revised UCR definitions for rape can be accessed in Offense Definitions.)"

  • "Among property crimes, 21.9 percent of larceny-theft offenses, 13.1 percent of motor vehicle theft offenses, and 12.9 percent of burglary offenses were cleared."

  • "In 2015, 20.4 percent of arson offenses were cleared by arrest or exceptional means."

  • "Nearly 25 percent (24.9) of arson offenses cleared involved juveniles (persons under age 18)—the highest percentage of all offense clearances involving only juveniles."

  • "More than 14 percent (14.6) of rape offenses (revised definition) that were cleared involved juveniles."

2015 FBI Clearance rates


This is food for thought. So think about that next time you consider not purchasing a firearm for personal protection, think about that next time you put off going to the range, think about that next time you put off not getting realistic training.

Shaneen Allen and Mahalia Lewis of Sisters In Arms and Black Woman With A Gun


REMEMBER: Push the National Conceal Carry Reciprocity Bill in her name - and her name is Shaneen Allen.​



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