Supreme Court Ruling May Lead to Increased Gun Violence in the U.S.

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connecticut-weapons-crimes-defense-attorney.jpgPeople in the United States rely on multiple types of laws that are meant to protect their safety. These laws address dangerous behavior, criminal actions, and products that can cause people harm. Unfortunately, many feel that a recent decision by the U.S. Supreme Court has weakened some of these laws, which may put more people at risk of being injured or killed by guns. This ruling seemed to come at the worst possible time, as the nation is still reeling from multiple cases involving mass shootings of innocent people, including children, by people who had obtained guns legally. 

Court Strikes Down New York Concealed Carry Law

In June of 2022, the Supreme Court ruled on the case of New York State Rifle & Pistol Assoc. v. Bruen, which addressed a state-level law in New York that limited the situations in which people could obtain licenses allowing them to carry concealed firearms. Unlike most other states, New York’s law had required people who applied for concealed carry licenses to demonstrate “proper cause” for why they should be allowed to possess and use concealed firearms in public. The Supreme Court struck down this law, and the majority opinion written by Justice Clarence Thomas stated that the law violated both the Second Amendment and the Fourteenth Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. 

This ruling deviates from other recent rulings in federal courts, which had tried to balance people’s individual rights with the need to protect public safety. The individual right to own firearms had only been addressed by the Supreme Court relatively recently. In a 2008 case, the Supreme Court ruled that individuals could own firearms for self defense and to protect their homes. When addressing the issue of carrying firearms in public, several lower courts had found that the rights of society were also important, and to protect public safety, states were allowed to pass laws limiting people’s rights to carry guns. However, Justice Thomas’s opinion stated that when addressing these issues, the “history and tradition” of the United States is the primary factor that should be considered, rather than public safety.

Unfortunately, this ruling has limited states’ rights to put laws in place restricting the carrying of firearms. While Justice Thomas stated that there are certain “sensitive places” where restrictions may be allowed, the ruling did not provide any guidance on how to determine what locations may be considered sensitive. While it is expected that firearms may be prohibited in schools, churches, government buildings, or other similar locations, the question of whether laws can restrict concealed carry in this manner is still open. At a time when many Americans are concerned about gun violence, this uncertainty is likely to result in decreased safety, and more people may be wounded or killed as lawmakers and courts attempt to address the issue in a reasonable manner.

Contact Our Connecticut Weapons Crimes Attorney

As state laws continue to address concerns about gun safety, there are a number of situations where people may face criminal charges related to the possession or use of firearms or other weapons. Regardless of how the laws change, those who are accused of crimes have the right to be represented by an attorney as they defend against criminal charges. Woolf Law Firm, LLC can help defendants determine the best defense strategies in these situations, ensuring that they will be able to resolve their cases successfully. Contact our Hartford weapons charges lawyer at 860-290-8690 to schedule a complimentary consultation.

Sources:

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2022/06/23/bruen-supreme-court-gun-rights-dangerous/

https://www.supremecourt.gov/opinions/21pdf/20-843_7j80.pdf

 

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