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Old April 24, 2011, 11:00 AM   #26
Al Norris
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Loaded or unloaded. Makes no real difference: A gun is a gun is a gun.

Transport or carry. Makes no real difference: A gun is a gun is a gun.

Outside of the listed (and limited) exceptions, MD requires a carry permit to move the gun outside of your doorstep.

Attorney General Gansler, just finished writing a brief in the Woollard case, where he said that applying for a permit was a futile effort, given that common citizens cannot meet the apprehended harm requirements of obtaining the permit.

Was Williams foolish for taking his gun, directly from the FFL to his girlfriends house? Yes, he should have known the laws. Should he have went directly to his own home? Yes, he should have known the laws. Because once there, it could not be moved (outside of the limited legal exceptions) without a permit, by action of MD law.

Concealed or open, loaded or unloaded, transported or carried, in MD a gun is a gun is a gun.

We should note that this request for cert isn't just because of what the MD High Court said. This case was appealed to the 4th Circuit and they said the same thing: If the Supreme Court allows for the scope of the 2A right to be something more than carry/possession in the home, then it will have to be more clear (paraphrased). Both Courts poked their fingers into the Supremes eyes.

In United States v. Masciandaro, the 4th Circuit said:
Quote:
On the question of Heller's applicability outside the home environment, we think it prudent to await direction from the Court itself. See Williams v. State, 10 A.3d 1167, 1177 (Md.2011) ("If the Supreme Court, in [McDonald's] dicta, meant its holding to extend beyond home possession, it will need to say so more plainly."); see also Sims v. United States, 963 A.2d 147, 150 (D.C.2008).

Last edited by Al Norris; April 24, 2011 at 08:37 PM. Reason: Corrected a major mistake on my part
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Old April 24, 2011, 11:48 AM   #27
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I wonder if we can assume Gura is in the loop on this one?
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Old April 24, 2011, 12:54 PM   #28
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Al Norris, I am not defending MD. There's a reason I did not want to move there - lack of CCW, and accompanying governmental mindset. I am just saying that if Williams had been transporting an unloaded gun, he would probably not have been charged.
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Old April 24, 2011, 03:32 PM   #29
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If the Supreme Court, in this dicta, meant its holding to extend beyond home possession, it will need to say so more plainly.
Part of me wonders if that's encouragement rather than insubordination.

Consider the oral arguments in McDonald v. Chicago when it was before the 7th Circuit (partial transcript here), and how eager Easterbrook seemed to be kicking the case up the ladder to the Supreme Court.

In any case, I still think the Woollard case is a much better candidate if we're going to bump the matter up to the big nine.
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Old April 25, 2011, 08:59 AM   #30
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Doesn't a ruling that the second amendment applies only in one's home mean that the court would have to believe the amendment was ratified to arm only indoor militias?
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Old April 29, 2011, 08:44 AM   #31
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The Case against Maryland

OK folks, Here is an interesting filing, yesterday at the Supreme Court: http://www.supremecourt.gov/Search.a...es/10-1207.htm

Code:
~~~Date~~~ 	~~~~~~~Proceedings  and  Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Apr 5 2011 	Petition for a writ of certiorari filed. (Response due May 5, 2011)
Apr 20 2011 	Waiver of right of respondent Maryland to respond filed.
The State of Maryland has filed a waiver of their right to respond to the request for cert. In other words, The State is not going to challenge the appellee at this time. Not even with a rephrase of the question asked by Stephan Halbrook.

When you consider that the Maryland High Court, the 4th Circuit and several district courts (not to mention all the defendants) have all said that the Supreme Court never said arms were protected anywhere but "in the home," this indicates that even the State of MD wants this settled, one way or another.

If the SCOTUS grants cert, the question that will be answered is:
Quote:
QUESTION PRESENTED

Whether peaceably carrying or transporting a registered handgun outside the home, without a carry permit that is unobtainable by ordinary, law-abiding citizens, is outside of the scope of “the right of the people to . bear arms” protected by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
Then there's the Wollard case, which is at the district court where we have multiple motions and cross motions for Summary Judgment. Final response is due by 05-12-2011 by the State. If the Judge holds for SAF/Gura then MD will effectively be a "Shall Issue" State.

What will not be resolved (in Wollard) is whether this is a right. That is true of all the varied "carry" cases. That is, before all the asinine CC laws can be changed, there must be judicial notice that we have the right to bear arms outside the doorstep. That is what at stake in the Williams case.

It may be that Wollard is stayed if the SCOTUS grants cert in Williams. I suspect that all the other "carry" cases may be stayed as well.

There are some not-so-subtle implications, nationwide, should the right to bear arms be recognized by the SCOTUS. Even though this is a criminal case, keep in mind that it was the MD carry laws that made Williams a criminal. Had he had the right to bear arms, he would not be a criminal.

Stephan Halbrook has crafted a very well worded question. Unlike previous attempts (by the NRA), this isn't a kitchen-sink case. There is only a single issue here: Does the 2A protect a right to bear arms outside your doorstep?

If the SCOTUS answers in the affirmative, then it's a whole new ball-game.
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Old April 29, 2011, 08:59 AM   #32
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I'm really surprised that they didn't challenge the underlined part of the question presented:

Quote:
Whether peaceably carrying or transporting a registered handgun outside the home, without a carry permit that is unobtainable by ordinary, law-abiding citizens, is outside of the scope of “the right of the people to . bear arms” protected by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution.
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Old April 29, 2011, 10:58 AM   #33
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Quote:
It may be that Woollard is stayed if the SCOTUS grants cert in Williams. I suspect that all the other "carry" cases may be stayed as well.
What are the chances looking like for Woollard to proceed further?

I'd think his case would fare better in front of SCOTUS because a) Woollard is not contesting criminal charges, b) his story is just as compelling (if not more so) than Otis McDonald and Dick Heller, and c) we've got a litigant representing him with a documented history of winning on that level.
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Last edited by Tom Servo; April 29, 2011 at 11:04 AM.
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Old April 29, 2011, 01:21 PM   #34
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Whatever else anyone may think, those cases that Halbrook has brought to the Court (granted cert), he has never lost.

Also, we have "Miranda" rights, because of a criminal case.

As for Wollard, it will proceed (as will every other carry case) up to the point Williams is granted cert (if it is).
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Old April 29, 2011, 03:10 PM   #35
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Lets suppose we win Wollard/Williams. I live in PA on the NYS border. Suppose I apply for a NYS carry license and I'm shot down because I'm not a NYS resident. For those not in the know you can't even posses a pistol in NYS without a NYS license and they don't issue non resident licenses. Would it then be cause to file suit? If so I'm willing to lend my name to the suit.

Add: I do have a PA License To Carry a Firearm. NYS doesn't recognize out of state licenses.
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Old April 29, 2011, 03:39 PM   #36
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I live in MD. When I transport a weapon to the range or to/from the gun shop or smith I am so damn careful to make sure it is in a case and unloaded. If it ain't you are looking for big trouble in this damn state. They can and will send you to jail. It is near imposssible to get a cc permit in MD and if you carry w/o one it is near impossible to avoid jail time if caught. I intend to move to rural Ill. where my sister has a business after my very old dog passes, but the laws are just as bad there
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Old April 29, 2011, 07:03 PM   #37
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rwilson, that's what the Peterson v. LaCabe case is all about. A win in Williams, will help this case also.
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Old April 30, 2011, 03:55 AM   #38
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Quote:
Lets suppose we win Wollard/Williams. I live in PA on the NYS border. Suppose I apply for a NYS carry license and I'm shot down because I'm not a NYS resident. For those not in the know you can't even posses a pistol in NYS without a NYS license and they don't issue non resident licenses. Would it then be cause to file suit? If so I'm willing to lend my name to the suit.
We need to figure out the actual words and text of a Williams win first before we know the answer to that, otherwise we're engaging in reading tea-leaves and speculation. Speculation isn't necessarily a bad thing, though.

There is actually three pieces of litigation against the NYC/NYS carry laws. There's Kachalsky v. Cacace that was filed in the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. There's a case in the state court system as well (I need to look it up again, it's in Manhattan) and the NYC Fees case.

Presuming a strong win in Williams, Kachalsky would be a shoo-in for a win, even if NYS appealed it up to the 2nd circuit (and our side would still win, again depending on the strength of Williams). A Kachalsky 2nd circuit win would allow for a challenge to the non-resident law there. If my case ends up at SCOTUS and we win that case, it'll fix New York.

-Gray
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Old April 30, 2011, 11:05 AM   #39
maestro pistolero
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NY State infuriates me that there is absolutely no path to a non-resident keeping, let alone bearing a handgun in that state. It is right denied, end of story. And it's a FELONY with a mandatory jail term!

Taking down that law ought to be like shooting fish in a bucket, post Heller/McDonald.
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Old April 30, 2011, 11:09 AM   #40
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If memory serves right the N.Y. law for handguns came about around 1903 know as the Sullivan law. Unruly bunch they were back then.
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Old April 30, 2011, 12:14 PM   #41
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Don P
If memory serves right the N.Y. law for handguns came about around 1903 know as the Sullivan law. Unruly bunch they were back then.
1911, ironically.

It's direct intent was to prevent law abiding citizens defending themselves from the armed robberies perpetrated by friends of Senator Sullivan.
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Old April 30, 2011, 12:57 PM   #42
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I'd like the MD Court of Appeals to explain what other constitutionally-enumerated rights exist only in one's residence and nowhere else.
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Old April 30, 2011, 01:29 PM   #43
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I can hear it now:
"The Second Amendment is only about the collective right to arm INDOOR militias, I tell you!"
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Old April 30, 2011, 02:11 PM   #44
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Post #42 :

" I'd like the MD Court of Appeals to explain what other constitutionally-enumerated rights exist only in one's residence and nowhere else. " Me also. As it stands, the Veterans Administration now says it is illegal for me to exercise certain Constitutional rights when I make appointments at the facility, to wit : any person or patient visiting the facility is subject to stop, search, and seizure of any article package or container, carrying any firearm (or knife or other contraband ) and if such is found, the person requesting entrance to said facility for treatment will be denied unless / until such contraband is taken off of facility property. Person is also threatened ( to me, personally, by "V.A.Law" enforcement officer ) with immediate confiscation of weapon, and incarceration by "V.A.Law" enforcement until trial, followed by 5-years and $5,000 fine. Now there are varyious rulings -- habeus corpus, et al -- involved in this summary application of guilt, but the "stop, search, and seizure" is the one bothering me, as it is the proximal event causing my (supposed) law-breaking event: for over three years of using the V.A. facility, I frequently carried a gun in my car, as there are four gun-shops reachable from my itinerary going to and from the V.A. There is a plaquard just inside the V.A. entrance gate, stating that visitors must stop and put any weapons in a lock-box at the Gate shack, keeping the key until departing the facility. I always complied. But one day this year the wording was changed. Same size and color of sign, but MUCH more restrictive wording, as pointed out above, which I did not notice. Upon visiting recently, dutifully I carried my gun into the Gate shack to leave it until I was done. This is the act that got me dressed down and threatened. But since I was a "regular" at the shack, the Sr. LE on duty just warned me loudly several times, and locked the gun in his office. I have been "V.A.Law" abiding ever since. My question: did I shed myself of the protection of my Constitutional Rights at the "V.A.Law" gates, simply because "some one" changed the words on that sign? I will be happy to apply my name to the case, if needed. Thanks to all responders. Dao.
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Old May 5, 2011, 05:15 PM   #45
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Quote:
No. 10-1207
Title: Charles F. Williams, Jr., Petitioner
v.
Maryland

Docketed: April 5, 2011
Lower Ct: Court of Appeals of Maryland
Case Nos.: (16, September Term, 2010)
Decision Date: January 5, 2011

~~Date~~ ~~~~~~~Proceedings and Orders~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Apr 05 2011 Petition for a writ of certiorari filed. (Response due May 5, 2011)
Apr 20 2011 Waiver of right of respondent Maryland to respond filed.
May 03 2011 DISTRIBUTED for Conference of May 19, 2011.
See the bolded part, above? Granted that many times a case will go to conference several times.... Folks, this is a seriously fast reaction by the SCOTUS to this case.

Here's the thing: We have a guy (stupid or not) who's only crime is that he carried a gun in a State where any carry requires a permit and said permit is never given out to the plebes. At his final appeal, the MD Court thumbed their noses at the SCOTUS. As have several other courts.

It's not just the Heller Five that are being challenged here. It's the entire SCOTUS. The four dissenters may not like the results of Heller and McDonald, but their own Judicial Authority is being challenged, along with their opponents. That cannot be sitting well with them.

Halbrooks question is amazingly simple: Does the right to self defense stop at your doorstep?

The question/validity of permits only comes into play, because the State won't issue to everyone (non-prohibited persons). So if you can't get a valid carry permit, in your State, can the State criminalize your right to carry in self defense?

Within Heller's historical context, the answer is a resounding, NO.

Regardless of when cert is granted (and I believe it will be granted); Regardless of when the orals are held; Regardless of how much we want to hear (and read) the decision, it will be on the last day of the 2012 session.

My reasoning is fairly simple:
Heller gave us the Right to Keep. McDonald gave us incorporation. Those were cases of First Impression. They were huge decisions and the Court traditionally reserves the last day for cases of importance. Williams almost certainly will give us the Right to Bear. This is another case of First Impression. This will be another huge decision (however it turns out). This is another case of great importance.
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Old May 5, 2011, 11:47 PM   #46
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I have no idea whether it is of any import in this matter, but actual registration of handguns is not required in Maryland. If one wishes to purchase a handgun in the state, the State Police have to sign off on a form that possession is "not denied"; but if, for example, you move into the state with your collection you are under no obligation to inform any official entity of what you have.

With my C&R, I can buy, from outside the state, any handgun that is not on the state list of unacceptable firearms (and since anything pre-1985 is exempted anyway, the question will not likely come up under the C&R classification) without having to inform anyone in the state govt of my purchase.

I suppose that under the wording of the question I might be denied permission to carry "unregistered" handguns, but one would of course hope for common sense to prevail. Possibly a forlorn hope in Maryland.
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Old May 6, 2011, 02:25 AM   #47
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Quote:
Folks, this is a seriously fast reaction by the SCOTUS to this case.
No kidding! Somebody wants this decided soon. We could have an answer (and a precedent) by next summer. Who wants to bet how many times it has to run through conference? So far, there doesn't appear to be much on the plate for OT11.
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Old May 6, 2011, 08:45 AM   #48
Al Norris
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bob.a
I have no idea whether it is of any import in this matter, but actual registration of handguns is not required in Maryland.
This doesn't come into the picture at all, bob.a.

In MD, outside of a few very limited exceptions, you must have a carry permit to move that firearm anywhere outside of your home.

When Williams bought the handgun and went from the dealer to his girlfriends house (with the gun), that was against the law (he wasn't caught doing this, but it was still a technical violation). The exception is transport from the dealer to his house. He then attempted to transport the firearm from his girlfriends place to his own home. Again, no permit and the transport was unlawful.

It really doesn't matter if we call this transporting or carry. Under MD law, it is one and the same. You must have a MD permit to carry/transport a firearm anywhere outside of the narrow exceptions to those Statutes. Except....

A normal citizen is barred from getting that permit, as AG Gansler has argued (effectively) in the Wollard case (in the Williams State case, the AG argued the exact opposite). Don't think for a minute that Halbrook isn't aware of this. He will take advantage of this argument.

Despite the opinion, just handed down, in the Nordyke case (9th Circuit), they have handed Halbrook another tasty morsel: Heightened scrutiny only applies if the regulation results in a substantial restriction of the right - such as no carry/transport without a permit that you can't obtain.
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Old May 6, 2011, 09:41 AM   #49
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As much as I'd like to think that the Supreme Court would eventually be concerned about lower courts ignoring their dicta and make an honest effort to respect the precedent established by Heller and McDonald, I don't see it happening.

I think this issue is politicized on the Court and that the Heller minority is taking the view that they were essentially correct and are just waiting for the opportunity to reverse it. As such, the last thing they want to do is create any more precedent, so I think they will continue to side against the Second Amendment for the foreseeable future.

The only (very, very small hope) is that there is at least one Justice who was not in the minority for Heller or McDonald and they may be more responsive.
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Old May 11, 2011, 12:46 AM   #50
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If the dude had the piece unloaded, the cops probably would not have hassled him. He was a dumbass for carrying a loaded weapon, if he was really just transporting it, but he won't be the first dumbass to end up in the joint. Maryland has some tough gun laws and I doubt they are going to change them anytime soon.
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