South Dakota minors might be able to have handguns

A bill before the South Dakota Legislature would allow minors to possess a pistol. (KOTA TV)

PIERRE, S.D. (KEVN/KOTA TV) - “But I have a note from my mother.” That might be all a South Dakota person younger than 18 needs in order to possess a pistol if Senate Bill 120 passes the Legislature.

The bill would allow a minor to have a pistol if he or she had prior written consent from the minor’s parent or guardian.

The bill passed its first test, getting unanimous approval from the Senate Judiciary Committee Tuesday. It now goes before the full Senate and if approved, then to a House committee.

South Dakota law at this time requires minors to be accompanied by a parent or guardian; and be on their property or that belonging to an immediate family member. The minor also has to be using the pistol for farming, ranching, hunting, trapping, target shooting or gun safety instruction. The change would mean they wouldn't have to be accompanied by a parent or gaurdian.