The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) filed suit Monday against New Jersey’s restrictive carry laws, suggesting they “effectively prevent average law-abiding citizens from legally carrying loaded sidearms outside of their homes for personal protection.”
The Firearms Policy Coalition, the New Jersey 2nd Amendment Society, and private citizen Stanley Davis, are Plaintiffs with SAF.
The suit, Bennett vs. Davis, was filed in United States District Court, District of New Jersey. It states that “individuals who are legally eligible to possess and acquire firearms, have a fundamental, constitutionally guaranteed right to carry loaded, operable handguns on their person and outside their homes, including in their vehicles, places of business, and otherwise in public, for the purpose of self-defense.”
However, the Plaintiff contends that NJ law has “criminalized the carry of handguns by subjecting those who unlawfully do so — even if by an otherwise law-abiding person who carries a handgun to exercise their fundamental right to bear arms in public for self-defense — to punishment for a crime of the second degree,” making the carry of a gun outside the home for self-defense a felony on the level of “aggravated assault resulting in serious bodily injury, aggravated arson, robbery, and sexual assault.”
The Plaintiff alleges the state has criminalized carry to the degree that if an “unlicensed person” is “convicted for exercising his rights by carrying a handgun in public, he would lose his Second Amendment rights.”
NJ.com reports, “Currently in New Jersey, gun owners without a permit can only possess handguns in their homes or places of business, or while traveling to and from target practicing, in which the gun must be unloaded and locked in a container throughout the entire trip.” Those who are caught carrying a gun for self-defense outside the home are “subjected to a second-degree felony and up to 10 years of imprisonment.”
Previous lawsuits against NJ’s carry laws have failed to accomplish their end, but SAF’s Alan Gottlieb says, “The Second Amendment absolutely applies in New Jersey. We will continue to sue whoever we need to as we restore the Second Amendment one lawsuit at a time.”
AWR Hawkins is an award-winning Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and the writer/curator of Down Range with AWR Hawkins, a weekly newsletter focused on all things Second Amendment, also for Breitbart News. He is the political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him at email@example.com. You can sign up for Down Range at breitbart.com/downrange.