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Thursday, November 16, 2023

Judge Rules For Plaintiff in Lawsuit that Challenged Lifetime Gun Ban for Non-Violent Misdemeanor Conviction - Ammoland.com

 Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) announced that Judge John Milton Younge of the Eastern District of Pennsylvania has granted summary judgment for the plaintiff in Williams v. Garland, which challenged the federal Gun Control Act’s lifetime ban on the exercise of Second Amendment rights due to a single misdemeanor conviction for a crime that did not involve violence, physical harm, or a firearm. The opinion can be viewed below.

Following a 2005 trial, Edward Williams was convicted of driving under the influence, in violation of Pennsylvania law. Because he had a previous DUI non-conviction in 2001 that was later expunged, the 2005 conviction qualified as a first-degree misdemeanor, which carries a maximum sentence of up to five years’ imprisonment. However, he was never imprisoned, and was instead placed under house arrest for 90 days, ordered to pay costs, a fine of $1,500, and to complete any recommended drug and alcohol treatment under the mandatory minimum sentence.

“The Government points to several regulations permitting the disarmament of drunk or intoxicated persons,” wrote Judge Younge in his opinion. “None of these regulations allude to disarmament lasting beyond the individual’s state of intoxication, and none provided for permanent disarmament, as Section 922(g)(1) does. Certainly, this Court agrees that using a firearm while intoxicated is dangerous, but historical regulations which momentarily disarmed certain individuals for temporary mental incapacity cannot be considered similar to the sanction of permanent disarmament for past DUI convictions.”

“We are very pleased with the district court’s decision,” said FPC Law’s Director of Constitutional Studies, Joseph Greenlee. “Mr. Williams is a peaceable person who should have never been disarmed. The court correctly ruled that his Second Amendment rights should be restored.”

FPC is especially grateful for the excellent work of attorney Joshua Prince on this case.

Click the link to read the whole article:  Judge Rules For Plaintiff 

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