Under John Monson's Christmas tree, there is a gun. Monson wouldn't say which kind - it's a surprise for his son.

Wait a minute. Can you even give a child a gun?

In Minnesota, a person under age 16 cannot possess a gun unless accompanied by a parent or guardian. However, there are some exceptions.

A person under age 16 may posses a gun without a parent or guardian if they're on the parent or guardian's land.

They can also possess a gun if they're participating in an organized target shooting program with adult supervision.

14 and 15-year-olds may possess a gun if they have a firearms safety certificate.

Now that you're up on the laws, you should also know the dangers. See the graphic below for statistics on youth gun violence or click here. 

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RELATED: Wisconsin company buys employees firearms for Christmas

Monson, who owns Bill's Gun Shop & Range in Robbinsdale, says safety is the most important thing.

He says, if you're going to give someone a gun, you should also make sure they're trained. You can purchase gift certificates for time on a shooting range. His range is having a holiday sale of 10 percent off all training courses.

Guns sold legally today come with trigger locks. However, older guns may not have them.

Project ChildSafe, a program of the National Shooting Sports Foundation, offers gun owners free Project ChildSafe Safety Kits. The kits include a cable-style gun lock and safety instructions.  

Law enforcement agencies in the MN metro that have free gun locks:

  • Minneapolis Police Department
  • St. Paul Police Department 
  • Brooklyn Park Police Department 
  • Plymouth Police Department 
  • Maple Grove Police Department 
  • Eden Prairie Police Department 
  • Lakeville Police Department 
  • Coon Rapids Police Department  
  • Burnsville Police Department 
  • Minnetonka Police Department 
  • Edina Police Department 
  • ATF - St. Paul Field Division/Group III
  • West St Paul Police Department
  • Mendota Heights Police Department
  • Roseville Police Department
  • Ramsey County Sheriffs Department
  • Saint Paul Police Department
  • Mounds View Police Department
  • Ramsey County Sheriff's Department
  • Maplewood Police Department

All law enforcement agencies in MN that have free gun locks:

(Alphabetical by city name)   

A

Ada

- Norman County Sheriffs Department

Adams

- Adams Police Department

Aitkin

- Aitkin County Sheriffs Department

 Akeley

- Akeley Police Department

Albany

- Albany Police Department

Alexandria

- Douglas County Sheriffs Department

Andover

- Anoka County Sheriffs Department

Appleton

- Appleton Police Department

Atwater

- Atwater Police Department

B

Bagley

- Clearwater County Sheriffs Department

Bayport

- Bayport Police Department

Benson

- Swift County Sheriffs Department

Big Lake

- Big Lake Police Department

Breckenridge

- Wilkin County Sheriffs Department

Buffalo

- Wright County Sheriffs Department

Burnsville

- Burnsville Police Department

C

Caledonia

- Caledonia Police Department

Cambridge

- Isanti County Sheriffs Department

Chaska

- Chaska Police Department

- Carver County Sheriffs Department

Circle Pines

- Lino Lakes Police Department

Cloquet

- Fond Du Lac Police Department

- Cloquet Police Department

Cold Spring

- Cold Spring Police Department

Cottage Grove

- Cottage Grove Police Department

Crookston

- Polk County Minnesota Sheriff's Office

- Polk County Sheriffs Department

D

Duluth

- Duluth Police Department

- St. Louis County Sheriff's Office

E

East Grand Forks

- East Grand Forks Police Department

Eden Prairie

- Eden Prairie Police Department

Elk River

- Elk River Police Department

- Sherburne County Sheriffs Department

Eveleth

- Eveleth Police Department

Excelsior

- South Lake Minnetonka Police Department

F

Fairmont

- Martin County Sheriffs Department

- Fairmont Police Department

Farmington

- Farmington Police Department

Fergus Falls

- Fergus Falls Police Department

Floodwood

- Floodwood Police Department

Foley

- Foley Police Department

- Benton County Sheriffs Department

Forest Lake

- Forest Lake Police Department

Frazee

- Frazee Police Department

G

Glencoe

- Glencoe Police Department

Glenwood

- Pope County Sheriffs Department

Goodview

- Goodview Police Department

Grand Marais

- Cook County Sheriffs Department

Grand Rapids

- Grand Rapids Police Department

- Itasca County Sheriffs Department

H

Hallock

- Kittson County Sheriffs Department

Hamel

- Corcoran Police Department

Hastings

- Dakota County Sheriffs Department

Hawley

- Hawley Police Department

Hermantown

- Hermantown Police Department

- City of Hermantown Police Department

Hopkins

- Hopkins Police Department

I

Inver Grove Heights 

- Inver Grove Heights Police Department

Isle

- Isle Police Department

Ivanhoe

- Lincoln County Sheriff's Department

J

Jackson

- Jackson County Sheriffs Department

Janesville

- Janesville Police Department

K

Kenyon

- Kenyon Police Department

L

Lake City

- Lake City Police Department

Lakeville

- Lakeville Police Department

Le Sueur

- Le Sueur Police Department

Lewiston

- Lewiston Police Department

Litchfield

- Meeker County Sheriffs Department

Little Falls

- Minnesota Department of Natural Resources

- Little Falls Police Department

- Morrison County Sheriffs Department

Long Lake

- Orono Police Department

Long Prairie

- Long Prairie Police Department

- Todd County Sheriffs Department

M

Madelia

- Madelia Police Department

Mankato

- Blue Earth County Sheriffs Department

Mantorville

- Dodge County Sheriffs Department

Maple Plain

- West Hennepin Public Safety

Marshall

- Lyon County Sheriffs Department

Medina

- Medina Police Department

Milaca

- Milaca Police Department

- Mille Lacs County Sheriffs Department

Minneapolis

- Minneapolis Police Department

- Brooklyn Park Police Department

- St. Anthony Police Department

- Hennepin County Sheriffs Department

- Coon Rapids Police Department

- Spring Lake Park Police Department

- Brooklyn Center Police Department

- Crystal Police Department

- Plymouth Police Department

- New Hope Police Department

- Edina Police Department

Minnetonka

- Minnetonka Police Department

Minnetrista

- Minnetrista/st Bonifacius Police Department

Moorhead

- Moorhead Police Department

- Clay County Sheriffs Department

Mora

- Kanabec County Sheriffs Department

Morris

- Stevens County Sheriffs Department

N

New Prague

- New Prague Police Department

New Ulm

- Brown County Sheriffs Department

North Branch

- North Branch Police Department

O

Onamia

- Mille Lacs Tribal Police Department

Ortonville

- Big Stone County Sheriffs Department

- Ortonville Police Department

Osseo

- Osseo Police Department

- Maple Grove Police Department

Owatonna

- Steele County Sheriffs Department

P

Park Rapids

- Hubbard County Sheriffs Department

Pequot Lakes

- Pequot Lakes Police Department

Pine River

- Pine River Police Department

Princeton

- Princeton Police Department

Proctor 

- Proctor Police Department

R

Red Wing

- Goodhue County Sheriffs Department

Rice

- Rice Police Department

Rockford

- Rockford Elem.

Rogers

- Rogers Police Department

Rosemount

- City of Rosemount Police Department

Rushford

- Rushford Police Department

S

Saginaw

- Minnesota State Patrol

Saint Cloud

- Stearns County Sheriffs Department

- VA Police

Saint Francis

- St Francis Police Department

St. Paul

- ATF - St. Paul Field Division/Group III

- West St Paul Police Department

- Mendota Heights Police Department

- Roseville Police Department

- Ramsey County Sheriffs Department

- Saint Paul Police Department

- Mounds View Police Department

- Ramsey County Sheriff's Department

- Maplewood Police Department

Sartell

- Sartell Police Department

Savage

- Savage Police Department

Shakopee

- Scott County Sheriffs Department

- Shakopee Police Department

Slayton

- Slayton Police Department

Springfield

- Springfield Police Department

Starbuck

- Starbuck Police Department

Stillwater

- Washington County Sheriffs Department

Walker

- Cass County Sheriffs Department

White Bear Lake

- White Bear Lake Police Department

Windom

- Cottonwood County Sheriffs Department

Winona

- Winona Police Department

- Winona County Sheriffs Department

Winthrop

- Winthrop Police Department

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