Firearm Permit Process Ruled Unconstitutional! | Guns & Gadgets 2nd Amendment News

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Summary

➡ Guns & Gadgets 2nd Amendment News talks about how a Massachusetts judge ruled that the state’s gun permit process was unconstitutionally vague, siding with plaintiff Randy Westbrook who was denied a license to carry a firearm. The judge stated that laws regulating Second Amendment rights must align with historical precedent and not give licensing authorities excessive discretion. The decision was based on a recent Supreme Court ruling that disallowed government regulation based on a discretionary assessment of someone’s need to carry a gun. As a result, the judge ordered that Westbrook be issued a license to carry.

Transcript

This could be a good one, y’all. We need to follow this case because this state’s gun permitting process was just called Unconstitutionally Vague and what I’m going to tell you about how the judge decided this is really, really good and where it happened is going to shock you. Massachusetts. Yes. The plaintiff’s name is Randy Westbrook and he applied for a license to carry a firearm. It’s called an LTC in Massachusetts. And the Massachusetts law, if you really are geeking out on it, is Mass General Law Chapter 140, Section 131. Now, the defendant, the bad guy, it’s David Pratt and David Pratt is the Chief of Police in Holyoke, Massachusetts.

Now, the chief reviewed the application by Westbrook and then notified him in writing that his application had been denied. In this written notice, which is required, the chief said that he determined that Westbrook was an unsuitable person for an LTC. In Massachusetts, they have suitability issues where chiefs have this huge, broad-range spectrum with nothing really defined. They can just say, you know what? He wears Yankee jerseys and I don’t like the Yankees. I think he’s going to be dangerous. And that’s just how easy it is in Massachusetts. Or was. Now, the chief indicated that his decision was based on the Holyoke Police Department Arrest Report, where he was charged with domestic assault and battery, aggravated assault and battery.

And Westbrook later accepted a finding, or a lack of a finding, rather, it’s called Quaff, continued without a finding. It’s not guilty. It’s not innocent. Just sits there, goes away. It’s continued without a finding. Now, he also accepted an additional quaff, continued without a finding, on charges of conspiracy to violate controlled substances, the Controlled Dangerous Substances Act as drugs, and the possession with the intent to distribute Class B law, and that’s a alleged drug dealing. And those came out of the North Berkshire District Court. But here is where the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association versus Bruin comes in, the Supreme Court smacking down these lower courts.

Now, first, guys, my birthday is a few weeks away and I have a goal of 700,000 subscribers. We’re very, very close. If you’re not subscribed and you love the Second Amendment, please consider subscribing. I’ll bring you information every day, no matter where it happens. If you are subscribed, double-check it. Please, had quite a few people reach out and say that they had to resubscribe. You might be in that boat without even realizing, so just check it, please. I appreciate you. Sponsor of today’s video is Sonoran Desert Institute. With more than 350 million firearms in the US, the time has never been better to learn how to be a gunsmith.

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Now, Westbrook filed a complaint. He appealed after the chief denied his LTC, and that’s the way it happens in Massachusetts. You appeal to a district court, and this is what this was. Now, Westbrook asserts that under the traditional Massachusetts standard of judicial review for license to carry denials, the decision to deny him an LTC was unreasonable, arbitrary and capricious, an abuse of discretion, and was not supported by substantial evidence. He maintains, however, that the traditional standard of judicial review of a licensing authority’s denial of a firearm application in Massachusetts is no longer acceptable after the United States Supreme Court’s decision in the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association versus Bruin decision.

Remember, June of 2022. In addition, Westbrook contends that the suitability standard is impermissibly vague and overbroad and is therefore unconstitutional. Now, part of in Massachusetts, when you have a constitutional challenge, you have to also notify the attorney general’s office. He did that as well. But shockingly, the anti-gun, anti-American Communist Democrat Party AG in Massachusetts hasn’t done anything. So, yeah. Now, an evidentiary hearing was held on March 1st of 2023, and the chief was the only witness there. It was just the chief sticking up for himself. And the chief said that his decision was based on information contained in two police reports and in other police records that he reviewed and his 37 years of experience in law enforcement.

So the chief saying that because I’ve been on the job 37 years, I know if you’re allowed to have your rights in my fiefdom. Well, chief’s about to get kicked in the gonads on this one. In Bruin, you should know that the New York Firearm Licensing Statute, that is in question, in that case, included a provision that required an applicant to establish proper cause for a license to carry firearms. And after Bruin came out, Massachusetts, which was not a shell issue state, but was forced to be as a result, instituted a type of proper cause requirement for their licensing process.

They done screwed up. Now, the proper cause in the Bruin decision was interpreted as a special need for self-defense that was distinguishable from that of the general community. That’s what New York was saying. And after a lengthy historical analysis, the Supreme Court determined there was no historical tradition requiring a showing of special need before an individual could exercise the right to carry a firearm. Didn’t happen. Now, the Supreme Court held that the Second Amendment did not allow government regulation that relies on a discretionary assessment of somebody’s need or justification to carry a gun. So here’s the judge’s conclusion.

He said, the United States Supreme Court has decided that there is a fundamental right to carry a handgun in public for self-defense, and laws that regulate Second Amendment rights must be consistent with historical precedent and may not give licensing authorities more than the minimum amount of discretion necessary to determine whether applicants would present a danger to themselves or others if armed. Judges may no longer decide Second Amendment challenges based on traditional balancing tests, and the government has the burden of demonstrating a historical tradition that supports its restriction on the right to carry a handgun. And in this case, the judge found that as a matter of law, there is a historical tradition in this country of denying firearms to individuals who have demonstrated they would likely be dangerous if armed.

Now, the chief, however, did not demonstrate a historical tradition that would support a law like Massachusetts that is based on the probability or even reasonable inference, but on a suggestion, a hint, or an insinuation that there may be danger. The chiefs have too much power, it’s broad, it’s vague, is what he’s saying. Now, the Massachusetts law is inconsistent with what the United States Supreme Court stated in Bruin, concerning their rights protected by the Second and the Fourteenth Amendments. So the judge said, you know what, Massachusetts? For all the above reasons, the decision denying Westbrook a license to carry must be reversed, and an LTC is to issue.

The judge ordered the chief to give the guy his permit. Now, the judge in this case is Judge William Hadley of the Holyoke District Court, and this decision came down on May 20th of 2024, about 10, 12 days ago. And Mike Traveling got this caught in the stream of stuff I was putting out. But I did check right before the weekend, and the chief had not appealed this decision. So it appears as though Holyoke took this on the button, but we’ll see. This case, if they do appeal it, could be a case that could destroy licensing restrictions where there’s a bunch of vagueness by his chiefs.

I don’t think we should have licensing anyway, it’s unconstitutional. It doesn’t even pass the Bruin decision, but until somebody challenges that, pointedly, just chipping away, I guess, is based on how decisions come. So let me know what you guys think about this down below. Does your state have a permit requirement, and is it unconstitutionally vague, like Massachusetts was? The chief could say, I drink blackout coffee, and you drink something else, and you’re dangerous because of it, so therefore no Second Amendment for you. That’s kind of how Massachusetts was, until this chief got lambasted in court.

So, good on the judge. I’m glad that the chief got kicked in the gonads on this one, because 37 years in law enforcement doesn’t tell anybody if they can have their constitutional rights, because you don’t like it. So, yeah, guys, you are your own first responder, remember that. There’s no chief, there’s no officer, there’s no agent, there’s no governmental entity that will be there when evil decides that it’s going to try to harm you or even take you. You have to decide, at that moment, if you’re going to defend yourself. And if you don’t have a tool that you have a constitutional right to, you might be behind the eight ball.

So, be safe, stay vigilant, carry a gun to keep you, your friends, your family, your community safe. Appreciate each and every single one of you. See you on the next one. Take care. [tr:trw].

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