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Summary: Federal Second Amendment lawsuit challenging California’s ban on so-called “assault weapons”

Plaintiffs: James Miller; Wendy Hauffen; Neil Rutherford; Adrian Sevilla; Ryan Peterson; Gunfighter Tactical, LLC; John Phillips; Poway Weapons and Gear; San Diego County Gun Owners PAC (SDCGO); California Gun Rights Foundation (CGF); Second Amendment Foundation (SAF); Firearms Policy Coalition, Inc. (FPC)

Defendants: California Attorney General Xavier Becerra; DOJ Bureau of Firearms Director Brent Orick

Litigation Counsel: John Dillon, Gatzke Dillon & Ballance LLP; George M. Lee, Seiler Epstein LLP


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Key Events & Filings:

2020-1-15: NOTICE of Change of Motion Hearing as to [16-1] MOTION to Dismiss for Lack of Jurisdiction Certain Claims in First Amended Complaint, [16-2] MOTION to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim, [22-1] MOTION for Preliminary Injunction and Declaratory Relief: Motion Hearing reset for 2/6/2020 02:00 PM in Courtroom 5A before Judge Roger T. Benitez. Opposition briefs are to be filed no later than 1/23/2020. All reply briefs are to be filed no later than 1/30/2020. (no document attached) (gxr) (Entered: 01/15/2020)

2020-1-15: Minute Order issued by the Honorable Roger T. Benitez: DENYING 25 Motion to Stay Proceedings Pending Resolution of Related Appeals; DENYING 27 Ex Parte Motion to Stay re 16 Motion to Dismiss for Lack of Jurisdiction Certain Claims in First Amended Complaint Motion to Dismiss for Failure to State a Claim, 22 Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Declaratory Relief Pending Ruling on Defendants' Motion to Stay. (no document attached) (gxr) (Entered: 01/15/2020)

2019-12-23: Plaintiffs' Opposition to Defendants' Ex Parte Application to Stay 

2019-12-19: ORDER Granting Joint Motion (26), Continuing Hearing on Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Motion to Dismiss. Motion Hearing continued for 1/29/2020 10:00 AM before Judge Roger T. Benitez. Defendants opposition to the preliminary injunction motion is due by January 16, 2020, Plaintiffs reply in further support of the preliminary injunction motion is due by January 23, 2020, and Defendants reply in further support of the motion to dismiss is due by January 23, 2020. Signed by Judge Roger T. Benitez on 12/19/2019. (mme) (Entered: 12/20/2019)

2019-12-19: Defendants' Ex Parte Application for Stay

2019-12-18: Joint Motion to Continue Hearing on Plaintiffs Motion for Preliminary Injunction and Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Certain Claims

2019-12-13: Defendants' Motion to Stay Proceedings

2019-12-13: Notice of Errata RE: Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction (PDF 21) (Attachments: #1 Notice of Motion and Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #2 Memo of Points and Authorities in Support of Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #3 Declaration of Ashley Hlebinsky in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #4 Declaration of James Miller in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #5 Declaration of Wendy Hauffen in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #6 Declaration of Ryan Peterson in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #7 Declaration of John Phillips in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #8 Declaration of Neil Rutherford in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #9 Declaration of Adrian Sevilla in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction, #10 Declaration of John Lott in Support of Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction)

2019-12-6: Plaintiffs' Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support of Motion for Preliminary Injunction; Declarations of plaintiffs and experts (PDF 44MB); Video of Comparison of California "Featureless" AR-15 vs. Standard AR-15 (Adam Kraut)

  • Plaintiffs: James Miller; Wendy Hauffen; Neil Rutherford; Adrian Sevilla; Ryan Peterson and Gunfighter Tactical, a firearms dealer; John Phillips and Poway Weapons and Gear, a training facility, firearms dealer, and NSSF 5-Star shooting range; advocacy organizations San Diego County Gun Owners (SDCGO) PAC; California Gun Rights Foundation (CGF); Second Amendment Foundation (SAF); and Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC);
  • Experts: Law professor and scholar, George Mocsary; arms, tactics, militia, and history expert Major General D. Allen Youngman (ret.); historian and firearm technology expert Ashley Hlebinsky; firearms, tactics, use of force, ballistics, and training expert Emanuel Kapelsohn; James Curcuruto, National Shooting Sports Foundation’s Director of Research and Market Development; and economist and crime researcher Dr. John Lott, president of the Crime Prevention Research Center; and attorney, modern firearms expert, and FPC Director of Legal Strategy, Adam Kraut); 

2019-12-4: Plaintiffs' Opposition to Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Certain Claims

2019-11-20: Hearing on Defendants' Motion to Dismiss (doc. 16) set for 12/18/2019 10:30 AM in Courtroom 5A before Judge Roger T. Benitez

2019-11-20: MINUTE ORDER issued by the Honorable Roger T. Benitez: Granting 17 Joint Motion for Leave to File Excess Pages of Briefs Regarding Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction

2019-11-19: Joint Motion to Exceed Page Limit of Briefs Regarding Plaintiffs' Motion for Preliminary Injunction

2019-10-25: Defendants' Motion to Dismiss Certain Claims

2019-9-27: First Amended Complaint

2019-8-20: ORDER OF TRANSFER PURSUANT TO LOW NUMBER RULE. Case reassigned to Judge Roger T. Benitez and Magistrate Judge Jill L. Burkhardt for all further proceedings. Judge John A. Houston, Magistrate Judge Andrew G. Schopler no longer assigned to case. Create association to 3:17-cv-01017-BEN-JLB. The new case number is 19-cv-1537-BEN-JLB. Signed by Judge Roger T. Benitez on 8/16/2019. Signed by Judge John A. Houston on 8/20/2019. (tcf) (Entered: 08/20/2019)

2019-8-15: Complaint

Related News Releases:

2019-8-15: Second Amendment Lawsuit Challenging California “Assault Weapon” Ban Filed in San Diego Federal Court