‘Safe storage’ struck down, Heller cited

I’ve expressed some doubts in the past about what kind of “victory” gun rights won in Heller, and those doubts haven’t gone away. It does appear, though, that some good has already come of it (from the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association).

Got an e-mail this afternoon from James Murtha from Murtha & Murtha, PLLC regarding a suit they brought in Suffolk Co. on behalf of a pistol license holder who had his license revoked after his wife committed suicide with the gun. The license was ordered revoked, then somehow converted from carry to premesis, on the grounds that the gun was not stored unloaded and locked up. From James’ email:

… In a landmark decision and order issued on October 30, 2008, Acting Justice Gary J. Weber wrote, In Heller the Court held that there is a personal right to bear arms protected by the 2nd Amendment to the Constitution. The Court further held that requirements that a handgun be rendered inoperable, or locked in such a manner so that it is not immediately accessible when possessed in the owner’s dwelling also transgresses upon this right to bear arms, because the 2nd Amendment recognizes that the right to bear arms includes a corollary right to self defense … Justice Weber went on to write that, “Simply put, the State of New York and its agencies are no longer in a position to require that a handgun be stored in an inoperable condition or otherwise locked up if it is otherwise legally present in the owner’s dwelling.”

The finding itself (pdf file, and just two pages) can be found here.

So Heller was cited as invalidating “safe storage” requirements, and this was in New York state. That doesn’t mean incorporation has been decided, of course, but if it stands it sets a nice precedent.

This one will be worth watching.

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