DC walls off city to establish new freedoms for law-abiding citizens

posted at 8:41 pm on July 29, 2014 by Matt Vespa

As previously mentioned, the District of Columbia’s law banning carrying firearms outside of the home was ruled unconstitutional. DC Police Chief Lanier instructed her officers not to arrest DC residents who are carrying outside the home if they’ve registered their firearms with the city. She also honored out-of-state residents with concealed carry permits. As for open carry, or anyone stopped on the street carrying a firearm, specifically if they’re from Vermont or Virginia, Lanier’s order instructed DC police to run their names to check for prior felonies. If the person in question comes up clean, send them on their way.

Well, all good things come to an end.

DC’s District Court ordered a 90-day stay in the Palmer decision to allow the city council to draft legislation allowing residents to carry their firearms in public; both parties agreed to this:

On July 28, 2014, Defendants filed a partially unopposed motion to stay pending appeal or, in the alternative, for 180 days and for immediate administrative stay.See Dkt. No. 52 at 1. In support of this motion, Defendants’ counsel advised the Court that he had conferred with Plaintiffs’ counsel, “who indicated that [P]laintiffs do not oppose a 90-day stay starting immediately ‘pending the city council enacting remedial legislation that complies with constitutional standards.’”

See id. at 1-2. Based on the parties’ agreement that an immediate 90-day stay is appropriate to provide the city council with an opportunity to enact appropriate legislation consistent with the Court’s ruling, the Court hereby ORDERS that Defendants’ motion for a stay is GRANTED to the extent that the Court’s July 24, 2014 Order is stayed nunc pro tunc for 90 days, i.e., until October 22, 2014.

As for die-hard gun rights supporters who would question why the plaintiffs would support a stay, that legal route was already underway.

At least on these terms, the reason is to give the city council time to clarify statues and establish permit-issuing protocols for law-abiding citizens; something that George Lyon, a plaintiff in the case, wants in DC.

Yesterday, Emily Miller of Fox5 in DC interviewed George Lyon who said, “The appropriate thing to do would be to enact a reasonable licensing permitting law that would achieve the legitimate governmental interest that the District has in seeing that only qualified and responsible people carry firearms.”

He was saying this in the hopes that the city wouldn’t spend millions of tax dollars on a prolonged legal fight.

Right now, if you planned on carrying in DC, you missed the boat.  If you live outside of the District, stay on the other side of the Potomac. Nevertheless, this is still a victory. Every state in the country – and soon the District of Columbia – has some form of law recognizing a citizens’ right to carry firearms in public for self-defense.

This decision ensures that the city council will draft some form of carry law.

Will there be almost suffocating regulations regarding concealed and open carry? You bet. This is DC. The city could try to push for a ban on open carry, given the politically sensitive nature of city, but establish a stringent concealed carry process. It shouldn’t be shocking if the process is “may issue,” meaning DC could deny you a permit for arbitrary reasons.

Additionally, we could see a bunch of benchmarks that could trigger another lawsuit. I’m referring to the “good cause” requirement that San Diego County adopted, which was struck down in the Ninth Circuit’s Petura v. San Diego decision earlier this winter.

Last May, the Supreme Court declined to hear Drake v. Jerejian; a similar case regarding New Jersey’s “justifiable need” clause in its handgun permit process. The issue remains to be settled.

Again, I’m not a lawyer; I’m just citing past legislation that other anti-gun legislatures have enacted in previous years. In a bastion of liberalism like DC, we should expect a heavily regulated permit process.

On the other hand, the principle of law-abiding citizens carrying firearms in public for self-defense has finally crossed the Potomac River.

Palmer v. DC – Order to Stay Decision by jpr9954

* This post has been updated.


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Yay, I think. Depends on regulations.

31giddyup on July 29, 2014 at 8:53 PM

Yesterday, Emily Miller of Fox5 in DC interviewed George Lyon who said, “The appropriate thing to do would be to enact a reasonable licensing permitting law that would achieve the legitimate governmental interest that the District has in seeing that only qualified and responsible people carry firearms.”

.
What’s wrong with the qualification(s) ALREADY laid-out in the Constitution, George ?

listens2glenn on July 29, 2014 at 8:54 PM

damn, was thinking about making a trip in there today

crrr6 on July 29, 2014 at 8:55 PM

Being the city it is, I expect DC will follow the formula Los Angeles used a quarter-century ago. I.e., having a permit procedure on the books but simply refusing to issue any permits.

Knowing DC’s government, they will probably follow that up by ordering the confiscation of arms from anyone fool enough to make the request. Followed by prolonged legal maneuvering to keep the victim tied up in court while they destroy the arms. (The San Francisco method.)

Both those statutes went down when the California State Supreme Court told both cities essentially, “The state legislature passed a law on this subject and you’re not allowed to disobey it”. This will probably end up the same.

But in between, DC will have once more reminded law-abiding gun owners “you’re not welcome here”, taken their property, expended their finances, and done their best to make them pariahs.

While telling the criminals, “Don’t worry, we’ll protect you as you carry the fight for social justice into the homes of everyone we don’t like. Which is everyone except ourselves”.

It’s what progressives live for.

clear ether

eon

eon on July 29, 2014 at 8:57 PM

getting to the point where i’m just going to say F it and carry anyway. if laws aren’t good enough for Obama, they’re not good enough for me.

crrr6 on July 29, 2014 at 8:59 PM

Yesterday, Emily Miller of Fox5 in DC interviewed George Lyon who said, “The appropriate thing to do would be to enact a reasonable licensing permitting law that would achieve the legitimate governmental interest that the District has in seeing that only qualified and responsible people carry firearms.”

.
Were the framers of our Constitution too blind to foresee that the U.S. would devolve into a population of people, who are not “qualified and responsible people” such as they should be denied firearms possession ?
.
Mentally disabled or otherwise undisciplined people shouldn’t be “CONTROLLED” by government, but rather by their family and neighbors.

listens2glenn on July 29, 2014 at 9:00 PM

As for open carry, or anyone stopped on the street carrying a firearm … (the) order instructed … police to run their names to check for prior felonies. If the person in question comes up clean, send them on their way.

Removing “Vermont”, “Virginia”, “DC” and the police chief’s name from the above should be the simple application of the law (the Second Amendment) across the nation.

Ruckus_Tom on July 29, 2014 at 9:02 PM

Being the city it is, I expect DC will follow the formula Los Angeles used a quarter-century ago. I.e., having a permit procedure on the books but simply refusing to issue any permits.

Knowing DC’s government, they will probably follow that up by ordering the confiscation of arms from anyone fool enough to make the request. Followed by prolonged legal maneuvering to keep the victim tied up in court while they destroy the arms. (The San Francisco method.)

And qualified gun owners should respond by simply following the 2d Amendment, retain their firearms, and not tell anyone (The **** the DC Government method).

orangemtl on July 29, 2014 at 9:06 PM

I’ll never again live anywhere I can’t carry as I wish. I’ve grown too used to it. MD to AZ was a one way trip.
I geuss unless you have lived with the right to carry however, whenever, wherever,, it might be harder to understand.

That’s how it should be.

I don’t think I could even deal with TX’s “brandishing” laws.

wolly4321 on July 29, 2014 at 9:11 PM

Gun free crime zone.

Galtian on July 29, 2014 at 9:15 PM

Even if they came up with a Shall Issue system I could see DC making sure in would be virtually impossible to use a gun in self defense. All they would have to do is adopt a proportional force standard which would allow criminals to use other means to use violence. Proportional means reverse the old adage of never bring a knife to a gunfight.

jerryofva on July 29, 2014 at 9:15 PM

Count on the DC city council to do their best to make the right to carry too costly and difficult for the vast majority, triggering yet further litigation.

They aren’t paying the lawyers with their own money, after all. And those lawyers make campaign contributions.

novaculus on July 29, 2014 at 9:24 PM

This decision ensures that the city council will draft some form of carry law.

I’ll believe it when I see it.

GarandFan on July 29, 2014 at 9:24 PM

She should have asked for the David Gregory exemption:

Why Doesn’t the Left Care About Shaneen Allen?

slickwillie2001 on July 29, 2014 at 9:33 PM

I’m sure it will be onerous and effectively prohibited. When I lived in NY, the only kind of carry permit I could get was a “sportsman” class which let me carry concealed to/from the range only and NYC was out of my jurisdiction. I had a 24×7 range membership for some measure of plausible deniability, but who knows how rigidly it’s enforced. Then the police called looking to confiscate my gun when my permit expired. Told them I left the state and they left me alone.

crrr6 on July 29, 2014 at 9:36 PM

Mentally disabled or otherwise undisciplined people shouldn’t be “CONTROLLED” by government, but rather by their family and neighbors.

listens2glenn on July 29, 2014 at 9:00 PM

We all know you’re referring to liberals, just say it ;-)

Diluculo on July 29, 2014 at 9:45 PM

Take a few steps back and look at this from a distance.

The judge said the DC law was “un-Constitutional”, and struck it down. Then, the same judge said “your law is Constitutional for 90 more days, then it will be un-Constitutional”.

Abortion is Constitutional for 90 more days.

Cruel and unusual punishment is Constitutional for 90 more days.

Law enforcement officer do not need probably cause or a search warrant, for 90 more days.

What a dumbass judge.

BobMbx on July 29, 2014 at 9:50 PM

“This decision ensures that the city council will draft some form of carry law.”

Wait. What? We already have one of those, and any law the DC city council drafts to “ALLOW” citizens to carry firearms can’t help but violate it.

flyovermark on July 29, 2014 at 10:08 PM

I was living in DC when the Heller case went down. I was initially very excited. But then they just passed a bunch of laws aimed at technically abiding by the court’s ruling, but still making it virtually impossible for most (law abiding) people to posses guns. Like you practically had to have a gun choppered to your apartment in in a safe without a combination in order to get one. (Is there still only one legal gun dealer in DC? It’s been a while since I’ve checked, because I moved across the river specifically because of this.)

They’ll make the whole process nearly futile. I’m glad for the decision, but it will not have any huge impact. A lot more work must be done by Second Amendment literates.

WhatSlushfund on July 29, 2014 at 10:19 PM

Federal politicians need to see residents packing heat.

BuckeyeSam on July 29, 2014 at 11:43 PM

May issue is useless for the vast majority of citizens. Only the well connected and super elite are allowed to carry. It’s no better than a flat out ban.

A right delayed is a right denied.

bossmanham on July 30, 2014 at 1:13 AM

Every state in the country and the District of Columbia have some form of law recognizing a citizens’ right to carry firearms in public for self-defense.

Uh, no, they don’t. That was the whole point of the stay – DC does not have any law in place for citizens to carry outside their home. That’s why the original court decision left it wide open.

Sheesh. That one isn’t even research – just consistency with the story.

GWB on July 30, 2014 at 7:09 AM

Criminals aren’t interested in observing the law as to whether to carry firearms or not.

Yet people who want/need to carry must obey contentious laws or be treated like the criminals – which in my mind, is not what the Constitution says in it’s Bill of Rights.

Felons should not be allowed to carry a firearm, and a law-abiding citizen carrying a firearm does not a felon make.

Turtle317 on July 30, 2014 at 9:29 AM

By “clarify statues” I assume you mean cleaning off the pigeon poop, but I’m not sure what that has to do with carrying a weapon. Unless you’re carrying it to shoot pigeons, I guess.

Longhorn Six on July 30, 2014 at 10:36 AM

As for open carry, or anyone stopped on the street carrying a firearm … (the) order instructed … police to run their names to check for prior felonies. If the person in question comes up clean, send them on their way.

How were cops going to justify forcing anyone to provide their name? You can’t arrest someone just because they wouldn’t provide their name unless you had a reason to suspect that the person was a felon to begin with.

corkie on July 30, 2014 at 10:48 AM

In Constitutional law, the Comity Clause refers to Article IV, § 2, Clause 2 of the U.S. Constitution (also known as the Privileges and Immunities Clause), which ensures that “The Citizens of each State shall be entitled to all Privileges and Immunities of Citizens in the several States.”

If drivers licenses and marriage licenses are DEMANDED to be recognized between states, then firearm licenses should be given the same treatment.

-states that issue drivers licenses to illegal aliens
-states that issue marriage licenses that would not be granted in another state

barnone on July 30, 2014 at 10:52 AM

I don’t think I could even deal with TX’s “brandishing” laws.

wolly4321 on July 29, 2014 at 9:11 PM

Not sure I understand your statement. Texas has open carry.

I believe if you are brandishing in Texas you are really asking for it.

Tenwheeler on July 30, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Not sure I understand your statement. Texas has open carry.

I believe if you are brandishing in Texas you are really asking for it.

Tenwheeler on July 30, 2014 at 1:37 PM

Well, two points. First, Texas doesn’t allow handguns to be open carried unless they’re antiques or replicas of antiques or something like that. Second, he may have meant “disorderly conduct” instead of “brandishing” since that’s what cops seem to be charging people with.

corkie on July 30, 2014 at 2:36 PM

You can expect legislation from the city council so arcane and convoluted that it not only satisfies the court ruling, but it also makes it nearly impossible to get a carry permit. Then someone will bring suit in court again, leading to more years of adjudication.

Lather, rinse, repeat. This will go on for the rest of our natural lives.

Cool Money Grip on July 30, 2014 at 6:27 PM

While I understand the practical aspect of giving the DC politicians an opportunity to get their shit together (ignoring of course the reality that they’ve had plenty of time to do that already) it just seems wrong for a judge to “stay” a constitutional right.

sewer urchin on July 30, 2014 at 8:15 PM

Well the wife almost got to go to Washington DC. She has wanted to go for 15 years. Yesterday I told her to make plans, today I told her to stop. I cant hire 24/7 body guards like Bloomberg and the cops are always minutes away when seconds count! They normally get their in time to put a tag on your toe!

pwb on July 30, 2014 at 9:45 PM