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  • (Updated) Grace and Wrenn Decision Win!

(Updated) Grace and Wrenn Decision Win!

Today, the D.C. Circuit released its long-awaited decision in Wrenn v. D.C and Grace v. DC.

These cases were consolidated on appeal for purposes of appeal and argument.  In those cases, the plaintiffs had challenged the DC statute that required the applicant to show that they had a "Good Reason" for a carry permit, defined as a reason that was special to the applicant. The full decision can be found here.  Here is the last sentence in the majority opinion:

"We vacate both orders below and remand with instructions to enter permanent injunctions against enforcement of the District's good-reason law." 

This is, of course, a huge win. The D.C. "Good Reason" statute is analytically indistinguishable from Maryland's "Good and Substantial Reason" statute.  If this opinion survives D.C.'s inevitable petition for rehearing en banc, it would create an inter-circuit split with the Fourth Circuit's Woollard decision sustaining Maryland's law.   That split substantially enhances the possibility of Supreme Court review (if DC seeks it).  A favorable Supreme Court decision would effectively overrule Woollard.  Stay tuned!

Mark W. Pennak, President, MSI

PS:  The DC Circuit also issued its standard stay order with the opinion.  That order stays the court's "mandate" until seven days after disposition of any timely petition for rehearing

or petition for rehearing en banc.  The court issues that sort of stay with all its decisions, so it is not unique to this case.  A stay of mandate means that nothing in DC has changed for now.

 

Update (August 27, 2017):

As expected, the District of Columbia filed a petition for rehearing en banc with the D.C. Circuit, seeking en banc reconsideration of the panel's landmark decision invalidating DC's "good reason" requirement for a carry permit.  You can find their rehearing petition here.   A response will be ordered by the court if any judge requests it and such an order is likely in this case.  Stay tuned.

 


Latest News

Appeal in Handgun Qualification License Lawsuit Filed

Appeal in Handgun Qualification License Lawsuit Filed

On June 24th 2019, Maryland Shall Issue, Atlantic Guns, and the individual plaintiffs filed our opening brief to the United States Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit from the district court’s dismissal in our challenge of the Handgun Qualification License. The District Court held that none of the plaintiffs had standing to complain about the HQL. In doing so, the court ignored much of the evidence of record, impermissibly acted as a fact finder on summary judgment and committed numerous errors of law in order to reach the result it did. You can read the newly filed brief HERE.

The State has 30 days to file their Brief of Appellees (the State will likely request an extension -- they always do) and we will then file a Reply brief in response. Oral argument before a 3-judge panel will then be scheduled for some months later in Richmond, VA. We will share those developments as they become available.

We firmly believe that the HQL only exists to burden and discourage law-abiding Marylanders from exercising their individual right to acquire a handgun for lawful self-defense. The suppression and rationing of ownership of guns has been the State's objective for years. Yet, unsurprisingly, the State's never ending attempt to illegalize guns has neither lessened crime nor made Maryland a safer place for people to live. One need only look to the years of increased violence in Baltimore for grim evidence of that. All that has been accomplished is to make it expensive and difficult for ordinary individuals to protect themselves and their families. As always, MSI will always stand up and push back against laws and policies that put the right of self defense out of reach from those who need it most.

Your generous support of MSI is what makes all this possible. Consider joining, renewing, or donating to MSI so that we can continue to support self defense and 2nd Amendment rights in Maryland.

Response to “The handgun board that couldn't shoot straight.”

The Sun, in its February 8, 2019 editorial, ably demonstrates once again that it does not grasp the complexity of gun law in Maryland in asserting that the Handgun Permit Review Board somehow has created a “loophole” in Maryland gun law by reversing the Maryland State Police 222 times on handgun wear and carry permits issued by the State Police. 

Read more ...

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