Federal court reviewing right to carry concealed guns issue in California counties

State law says those with 'good moral character' can obtain permits

Eleven judges of a federal appeals court heard arguments in San Francisco Tuesday but did not indicate how they will rule on whether California counties can limit law-abiding citizens in carrying concealed guns.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals panel is reviewing two cases in which gun owners in San Diego and Yolo counties claim restrictions set by their sheriffs violate their federal constitutional right to bear arms.

In both counties, the sheriffs require individuals to show that they are in exceptional danger to obtain a concealed-carry permit.

The policies stem from the state's concealed-carry law, which provides that citizens must be of good moral character and have "good cause" to obtain a permit.

The law allows individual counties, through their sheriffs, to set the policy on what "good cause" is. County policies vary from granting permits to law-abiding citizens on demand to establishing restrictions such as those in San Diego and Yolo counties.

"We are asking for a right to have some mechanism for a right to self-defense outside the home," Paul Clement, a lawyer for the gun owners, told the court.

The gun owners contend that because another California law greatly restricts the open carrying of guns, the constitutional Second Amendment right to bear arms would be "effectively destroyed" in California if concealed carrying is blocked.

The concealed-carry lawsuits are among a series of cases in which federal courts around the nation are being asked to clarify the rights guaranteed under the Second Amendment in the wake of a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 2008.

In that decision, known as the Heller case, the high court said by a 5-4 vote that the right to bear arms applies to individual citizens and specifically affirmed the right to possess guns for self-defense in the home. But the court said some regulation was permitted, and left unclear what limits might be acceptable outside the home.

California Solicitor General Edward DuMont told the appeals panel, "The Supreme Court has not given us guidance" on rights outside the home. He argued the California law was supported by "a lot of history of the regulation of carrying handguns" by cities and counties in the state.

"Conditions may vary from place to place and a local sheriff is aware of local conditions," DuMont argued.

The circuit court granted a rare rehearing by an 11-judge panel after the state appealed a decision in which a three-judge panel struck down the San Diego County restrictions by a 2-1 vote in February 2014. The same panel unanimously overturned the Yolo County rule a month later, saying it was bound by the previous decision.

The panel has no deadline for issuing a written decision.

Three other regional federal appeals courts in New York, Philadelphia and Richmond have upheld concealed-carry regulations.

— Bay City News Service

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1 person likes this
Posted by Hotslide
a resident of Oak Tree Acres
on Jun 18, 2015 at 7:26 am

EVERYPLACE, that is EVERYPLACE that concealed carry laws have been permitted, have statistically proven that "predator crimes" have been significantly reduced. Since the citizens of Detroit were permitted to carry concealed a couple of years ago, the police chief has stated that it is the reason that crimes against citizens such as street robberies, ATM hold-ups of people and other crimes of this nature ARE DOWN 35% !! You will not read that in any left wing paper or here it on the socialist TV news programs, but research it yourself. Look at the law as implemented nationwide and the results. Florida was one of the first States to allow it, since Miami was out of control, and the reduction of gun crimes by criminals went way down. The principle: Criminals are by nature cowards and will not take the chance of accosting someone who may be armed. If the left wing appointees of the 9th circuit uphold the right to carry, I will pass out.

5 people like this
Posted by Damon
a resident of Foothill Knolls
on Jun 18, 2015 at 11:48 am


For an opposing viewpoint:

"This is the NRA’s worst nightmare: The new gun safety study that gun nuts don’t want you to hear about"

"A law requiring people to apply for a permit before buying a handgun helped Connecticut quietly reduce its firearm-related homicide rate by 40 percent, according to a new study out from Johns Hopkins Center for Gun Policy and Research."

News story at Web Link

1 person likes this
Posted by Hotslide
a resident of Oak Tree Acres
on Jun 19, 2015 at 10:24 am

Damon, have you went through the process of buying a gun in California lately? Everyone has to apply and go through background checks, then the selection of what you can buy is about 20% of what is available in other states. FYI, John Hopkins has long been a leading anti-gun entity, so any study from that source is baloney. Again, just research the facts. Since Obama took office and started his socialistic approach to disarming citizens, like his mentor Sal Alinsky has instructed him as a primary step for complete government control of the people, gun sales have skyrocketed, and women have led the surge. Gun control is a primary tool and excuse by the left because they cannot face the truth about what the real causes of gun violence are in inner cities, and by crazy sub-literates like we just witnessed in South Carolina. He could not qualify so his dad bought him a gun, how are you going to stop that? South Carolina has CC laws, but you can't take a gun into a church, or maybe a responsible citizen could have stopped him. People who want to do harm will do it, this has happened forever.

Like this comment
Posted by Bob
a resident of Downtown
on Jun 19, 2015 at 1:13 pm

Once again Cali has themselves in a bind. The rules are inconsistent from county to county. It is so inconsistent it is almost impossible to enforce. If you live in San Juaquin county you can get one and its good throughout the state. It will eventually go to the Supreme Court and get thrown out. If we were smart we would put together test criteria and have it demonstrated and the. Issue a license to someone we know is qualified to safely handle a firearm and we know who has and who does not have a firearm.

The way it is now people buy them and throw them in the their glove boxes

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