Entrepreneur says permit process shut down his mobile gun locker business downtown

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ST. LOUIS (KTVI) – A visit from a St. Louis police sergeant the day Justin Hulsey was supposed to begin services did not bode well for his business: Mobile Safe Storage.

“The latest is we don't have an occupancy permit,” said Hulsey, early Friday evening. “Unfortunately, the occupancy permit we were going to draw under with Paddy O's doesn't fit the criteria the city has for occupancy to be able to conduct another style of business.”

Hulsey was hoping to provide a place for people to lock up their valuables, and conceal and carry permit owners to lock-up their weapons before they go into Busch Stadium. And he hoped to begin Friday night.

The truck, which would serve as a manned storage locker, was ready.

“Because operational security we're not telling what's inside the vehicle,” Hulsey said.

He even had a contract with a security company.

“Fully licensed security officers,” said Hulsey. “They carry mace, baton, semi-automatic weapons.”

And Hulsey said he thought the paperwork was all in order. He showed us piles of permits.

“Here's the city of St. Louis,” he said. “Every time you go there you have to do tons of paperwork and buildings to go to.”

A frustrated Hulsey said it seems there is no end to the permit process in St. Louis.

“I went down to city hall I guess I spent 5-1/2 hours there today, talking to the building division, zoning, and then back and forth with the business license office.”

So what now?

“The next step is to try to find another way around it. Another graduated business license or deal with trying to get a vending license and try to operate.”

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