US District Court strikes down Washington DC’s Conceal Carry Ban
US NEWS- Paul Gordon Collier – Federal Senior District Judge Frederick J. Scullin, Jr, out of Syracuse NY, struck down Washington DC’s ban on carrying guns in public this past saturday. The ruling came in the case of Palmer v. District of Columbia.
Washington, DC, the nation’s capital, had the last outright ban on carrying guns in public in the country. The ruling follows last year’s Supreme Court ruling in District of Columbia v Heller that the Second Amendment provides protections for citizens to have guns in their own homes.
The issue of whether the 2nd Amendment also covers carrying weapons outside of the home has never been taken up by the Supreme Court, despite discrepancies in lower court decisions
The Federal Judge in this case Judge Scullin, applied the protections to extend beyond the home. His ruling prevents city officials from enforcing the ban/ The city council, in December 2008, stripped the city police chief the authority to issue licences for individuals to carry handguns. Judge Scullin observed, “the District of Columbia lacks any mechanism to issue handgun carry licenses to individuals.”
The Judge cited cases by US Courts of Appeals in both the Seventh and Ninth districts that struck down similar bans on carrying handguns in Illinois and San Diego County.
In his final ruling, Judge Scullin declared that the Second Amendment right to carry a gun outside the home applies not only to residents of Washington, D.C., but also to visitors to the city. One of the individuals who sued was not a resident. The ruling applies both to open and concealed carrying of handguns in public.
The ruling makes it effective immediately that the District of Columbia can no longer enforce the ban on carrying handguns in public.