PHILADELPHIA (December 1, 2020) — This morning, counsel for Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) filed a motion for a preliminary injunction and expedited trial on the merits in a federal court case, Lara v. Evanchick, challenging Pennsylvania’s ban on handgun carry as to adults under the age of 21. The motion can be found at FPCLegal.org.
The brief, filed by Cooper & Kirk, Joshua Prince, and FPC Director of Legal Strategy Adam Kraut, argues that Pennsylvania’s laws not only criminalize the carry of loaded, operable firearms by the plaintiffs, it prevents them from acquiring a license to carry, completely foreclosing their exercise of the fundamental right to bear arms. That policy, they say, is flatly unconstitutional, foreclosed by the Second Amendment and the Supreme Court’s precedents, and must be enjoined.
“The constitution guarantees the right of all law-abiding, adult citizens to carry firearms for self-defense,” explained Pete Patterson of Cooper & Kirk. “Pennsylvania's flat denial of this right to 18-20-year-old adults cannot be squared with this constitutional guarantee.”
“Our law-abiding adult clients, and all young adults in the Commonwealth, have a fundamental constitutional right to carry and transport firearms, but Pennsylvania’s discriminatory law prevents them from getting a license to carry. And especially now, in the state of emergency declared by Governor Wolf, they cannot carry in any manner at any time whatsoever. That is unconstitutional and offensive to our founding principles,” said attorney Joshua Prince of the Civil Rights Defense Firm.
“The Commonwealth’s criminal laws, combined with the State’s ban on applying for and acquiring a license to carry, amount to a total ban on the right and ability of our law-abiding adult clients to carry a firearm outside of their home for self-defense,” said FPC’s Adam Kraut. “The destruction of the right to bear arms outside the home for individuals who are over the age of eighteen but not yet twenty-one defies logic and squarely flies in the face of the Second Amendment.”
“This case and our other lawsuits challenging age-based bans are about fighting for the rights of America’s young adults, protecting the rights and liberties of future generations, and restoring the Second Amendment for all individuals,” said FPC President Brandon Combs. “The rights of young people are incredibly important to FPC, and that is why we have made fighting for them a priority in our broader strategy to advance individual liberty and freedom.”
Recently, Firearms Policy Coalition has filed several major federal Second Amendment lawsuits, including challenges to the State of Pennsylvania’s and Allegheny County’s carry restrictions (Cowey v. Mullen), Philadelphia’s Gun Permit Unit policies and practices (Fetsurka v. Outlaw),California’s Handgun Ban and “Roster” laws (Renna v. Becerra), Maryland’s carry ban (Call v. Jones), New Jersey’s carry ban (Bennett v. Davis), New York City’s carry ban (Greco v. New York City), the federal ban on the sale of handguns and handgun ammunition by federal firearm licensees (FFLs) to adults under 21 years of age (Reese v. BATFE), and others, with many more cases being prepared today. To follow these and other legal cases FPC is actively working on, visit the Legal Action section of FPC’s website or follow FPC on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, YouTube.
The Lara v. Evanchick case is another important lawsuit filed as part of FPC’s comprehensive strategy to defend freedom, advance individual liberty, and restore the Constitution and its guarantees for individuals throughout the United States. Individuals who wish to support the lawsuit can do so at JoinFPC.org and www.firearmspolicy.org/lara.
NOTICE -- POTENTIAL PLAINTIFFS NEEDED!
FPC is urgently seeking individual and FFL plaintiffs for a number of lawsuits that are being prepared to challenge laws and policies that infringe on fundamental rights, including (but not limited to):
- Laws and policies that prevent individuals from purchasing and/or possessing so-called “assault weapons” (semi-automatic firearms with standard characteristics) and “high-capacity” magazines (standard magazines that hold more than 10 rounds)
- Laws and policies that prevent 18-20-year-old young adults (under age 21) from obtaining handguns from FFLs and carry loaded, operable arms in public for self-defense
- Laws and policies that prevent individual adults (over the age of 18) from carrying loaded handguns and other arms outside of their home
- Laws and policies that prevent individuals from acquiring and/or possessing handguns and other arms without first acquiring a “purchase permit”
- Laws and policies that prevent individuals from acquiring or possessing firearms due to a conviction for a non-violent crime, or mental health adjudication that did not involve an involuntary commitment
- Laws that prevent honorably discharged veterans from acquiring or possessing firearms because they have been classified as “a mental defective” due to the agency’s determination that they “lack the mental capacity to contract or manage his or her own affairs” because they need assistance managing VA benefits and have a fiduciary
If someone you know meets the criteria above, or if you would be interested in participating in litigation as a supporting FFL, please contact us:
- On the web at www.firearmspolicy.org/hotline
- By email at potentialplaintiffs[at]fpchq.org
- By phone at (855) 252-4510 (FPC Legal Action Hotline available 24/7/365)
If you would like to support FPC’s Fetsurka case and many other pro-Second Amendment lawsuits, legal action, and research, please chip in $5, $10, $25, or whatever you can at https://www.firearmspolicy.org/donate or Join the FPC Grassroots Army at JoinFPC.org.
Firearms Policy Coalition (firearmspolicy.org) is a 501(c)4 nonprofit organization. FPC’s mission is to protect and defend constitutional rights—especially the right to keep and bear arms—advance individual liberty, and restore freedom through litigation and legal action, legislative and regulatory action, education, outreach, grassroots activism, other programs. FPC Law is the nation’s largest public interest legal team focused on Second Amendment and adjacent fundamental rights including freedom of speech and due process, conducting litigation, research, scholarly publications, and amicus briefing, among other efforts.