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Thread: CT Lawsuit Has Been Filed!

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    Regular Member Lenny Benedetto's Avatar
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    CT Lawsuit Has Been Filed!

    http://ccdl.us/blog/2013/05/22/lawsuit-filed/

    And the lawsuit is filed! Here is the official release:

    FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE May 22, 2013

    Contact: Scott Wilson
    President, CT Citizens’ Defense League
    860-235-7490

    Contact: Brian Stapleton, Esq.
    Goldberg Segalla, LLP
    860-760-3300

    Bridgeport, CT – Today, a widely-anticipated lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Connecticut, challenging the constitutionality of the new firearms law that was passed hastily by the Connecticut legislature in response to the tragic shooting in Newtown by a disturbed individual. The lawsuit seeks immediate injunctive relief and a ruling declaring the new law unconstitutional under the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution. It alleges that Connecticut’s new firearms law is not only unconstitutional but dangerous, since it makes both citizens and law enforcement less safe by depriving citizens of firearms that are in common use throughout the country. The very firearms and design features banned by the new law are commonly used in part because of safety, accuracy and ease-of-use features that make them effective in the hands of citizens who must defend themselves and their families against criminals and the mentally ill who do not obey such laws.

    Brought on behalf of individual gun owners, retailers, and citizen’s defense and sportsmen’s organizations, the lawsuit seeks to vindicate the constitutional rights of citizens who are harmed by the broad prohibitions and unworkable vagueness of the new law. The legal challenge focuses on Connecticut’s ban of more than 100 additional common firearms that the law now dubs “assault weapons” and on the ban of standard design features, including magazines that hold more than 10 round of ammunition, that provide improved safety, accuracy, and ease-of-use. The lawsuit also challenges the practical bans imposed by the new law on an even broader array of firearms due to the law’s vague language and interpretative confusion combined with severe criminal penalties.

    Plaintiffs bringing the lawsuit include individuals such as an elderly widow who lives alone in a rural area where the emergency response time of a lone resident trooper serving the area is 45 minutes, a rabbi whose synagogue in the Bridgeport area has been broken into by intruders, a young professional woman whose efforts to defend herself are made more difficult by the loss of an arm due to cancer, among other individuals.

    In addition, retailers whose businesses have been severely harmed by the law have joined the lawsuit, which was conceived and organized by fellow-plaintiff organizations the Connecticut Citizens Defense League, commonly known as CCDL, and the Coalition of Connecticut Sportsmen. Both organizational plaintiffs represent large numbers of Connecticut citizens whose rights to own the firearms of their choice for self-defense and other lawful purposes, such as sports shooting and hunting, have been harmed by the new prohibitions.

    Despite the new law being called “An Act Concerning Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety,” Connecticut’s new firearms law makes Connecticut citizens less safe. Among the individuals harmed by the law’s provisions are women, the elderly, and anyone of a smaller physical stature — individuals who typically lack the strength to operate older style, heavier, or difficult to use firearms and yet who need to be able to protect themselves in challenging home-invasion and other self-defense situations.

    CCDL’s President, Scott Wilson, who has seen his organization’s membership grow from 2,500 to 7,600 in just a few months, says “On behalf of our members and all of the plaintiffs, we wish to thank the National Rifle Association, whose vision and stalwart defense of citizens’ fundamental rights has helped make this important legal challenge possible.” Wilson says, “Connecticut’s new gun ban violates Second Amendment rights by depriving law-abiding citizens of firearms that are in common use throughout the country precisely because of their known effectiveness in the protection of citizens, their families, and homes. Criminals and the mentally ill will not abide by this terrible law, which means it has the perverse effect of actually making citizens and law enforcement officers less safe.”

    Bob Crook, Executive Director of the Coalition of Connecticut Sportsmen, says, “This law will do nothing to prevent a tragedy or solve the problem of crime committed with guns. Instead of violating constitutional rights, we need to get serious about addressing violence and mental illness.” He continued, “Two recent independent studies by Pew and the federal government have just revealed that gun homicides are down almost 40% and general crime involving guns has dropped a whopping 70% since 1993, which corresponds with the elimination of the federal assault weapons ban. In contrast, the few areas of the country where gun crimes have increased dramatically are the very places where local or state governments have banned or severely restricted gun ownership by law-abiding citizens.”

    Many of the design features now banned by Connecticut’s new law have long been standard in firearms design as they enhance safety, accuracy and ease-of-use, and include: design features that enhance a citizen’s ability to balance a firearm properly so that it can be shot safely and accurately based on the size of the owner – especially if the owner is smaller-sized like many women, the elderly, and youth shooters (retractable shoulder stock); design features that allow a long gun to be held more easily for accuracy and to be held onto by its owner if an attacker tries to take the gun from a victim (pistol grip and forward pistol grip); design features that allow those who are in stressful situations with multiple home-invaders or attackers to have sufficient bullets for meaningful self-defense without impractical situation of having to try to reload or access a second gun (standard magazine capacities over 10 rounds), etc. The specific firearms now banned by the law include some of the most commonly used and popular models in Connecticut and in America today, including the light and versatile AR-15.

    Some local retailers supporting the lawsuit say that in addition to the increased dangers created by the law, the law is vague and unworkable. Although they are knowledgeable about various types of firearms, many are having difficulty trying to determine which firearms are banned and which are legal to sell. If they decide incorrectly, they could be facing years in jail. Some say it is difficult for reputable dealers to continue serving the law-abiding citizens of Connecticut under these circumstances. If licensed dealers leave the state, it will become increasingly difficult for the people of Connecticut to acquire firearms to defend themselves. Meanwhile, these retailers say, the criminals will still be armed and in an even stronger position to harm and terrorize the people of Connecticut.

    The Connecticut lawsuit, like similar legal challenges in New York, Colorado and Maryland, is expected to better define the limits of a citizen’s right to own a commonly used firearm of personal choice for self-defense, defense of family, and other lawful purposes. Each of these states has enacted new firearms laws that make citizens and law enforcement less safe as they try to defend against criminals and the mentally ill who do not obey these laws.
    The Connecticut Citizens Defense League is a non-partisan, grassroots organization devoted to advocating rights affirmed by the Constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Connecticut. We are especially dedicated to protecting the unalienable right of all citizens to keep and bear arms, for the defense of both self and state, through public enlightenment and legislative action.
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    Regular Member romma's Avatar
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    Links to Press Release and the Filing.

    http://ccdl.us/aboutus/media/253-law...district-court

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    Anyone impressed with the filing?

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    Regular Member Lenny Benedetto's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Anyone impressed with the filing?
    If only you were our attorney!!!!
    Then we would have it in the bag!!!!
    ROFLMFAO!!!
    The Connecticut Citizens Defense League is a non-partisan, grassroots organization devoted to advocating rights affirmed by the Constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Connecticut. We are especially dedicated to protecting the unalienable right of all citizens to keep and bear arms, for the defense of both self and state, through public enlightenment and legislative action.
    Join Here: http://www.ccdl.us/membership

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny Benedetto View Post
    If only you were our attorney!!!!
    Then we would have it in the bag!!!!
    ROFLMFAO!!!
    Hmmmm.....

    What do you think the goal of the action should/should have been?

    here are your options (you can state another ~ after all its your opinion I am seeking):

    a) have the law stricken in its entirety
    b) have specific sections ruled to be unconstitutional

    Well, ya got (b) in the filing. No argument that the e-cert process was not done correctly which would strike the bill in its entirety; no argument that the law was the result of secret meetings in violation of CGS Chapter 14 (and the FIC just heard a case yesterday and noted that they can void output of such secret meetings) that may cause the law to be stricken in its entirety.

    Now, did not CCDL complain about the e-cert process?
    I'm really puzzled why this was not part of the complaint. Its a 2nd, 9th & 14th amendment issue.

    Now we have have a complaint of the (b) variety that does not address the registration requirements. Interesting because in our state the state has stated or already admitted that one party disclosing their arms to a second party creates a risk of death or injury to the disclosing party. What could be more of an infringement? You can keep your guns but you must expose yourself to the risk of death to do so?

    I did suggest that they post the complaint prior to filing ... they wanted to keep it a "secret". If they would have made the draft public then many people could have had suggestions. Believe it or not, a large populous can derive a great complaint as opposed to the minds of a few.

    And why is there no mention of the arms that local police have? They are not entrusted with guarding us from foreign invaders like the military is (See Art. IV, Section IV of US Const.). But they are useful for common defense and public defense .. one of the purposes of our 2nd amendment RKBA noted in Heller & other opinions. And CCDL members have lists of guns the PDs have and they are on the naughty list...why not list them in the complaint?

    And no mention of one of the reasons for the 2nd - to protect us from our gov't. Instead they focus solely on the criminal/personal protection aspect.

    The complaint must survive a motion to dismiss and a motion for summary judgment ... some points are very well plead and some are not and some points are absent.

    In reality, I think that the complaint could have been better.

    They can still amend and I hope that they do.

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    Thank you for your hard work CCDL

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    Regular Member WalkingWolf's Avatar
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    I'll say prayers for your success. But I have been praying for the good people of Illinois, and that does not seem to be working out.
    It is well that war is so terrible – otherwise we would grow too fond of it.
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    The patriot volunteer, fighting for country and his rights, makes the most reliable soldier on earth.
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    Regular Member Lenny Benedetto's Avatar
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    Looks like our high priced attorneys MISSED SO MUCH!
    DAMN!
    If only you were our attorney!!!!
    Then we would have it in the bag!!!!
    ROFLMFAO!!!
    The Connecticut Citizens Defense League is a non-partisan, grassroots organization devoted to advocating rights affirmed by the Constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Connecticut. We are especially dedicated to protecting the unalienable right of all citizens to keep and bear arms, for the defense of both self and state, through public enlightenment and legislative action.
    Join Here: http://www.ccdl.us/membership

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny Benedetto View Post
    Looks like our high priced attorneys MISSED SO MUCH!
    DAMN!
    If only you were our attorney!!!!
    Then we would have it in the bag!!!!
    ROFLMFAO!!!
    If you are happy with the complaint, that's fine. Yet you offer nothing of value in a review of the complaint.
    It appears as if you do not want the law stricken in its entirety.
    It appears as if you are happy with the registration requirements of PA13-3.
    It appears as if you are happy with the AWB sections that were not objected to in the complaint.
    It appears as if you are happy with the e-cert process.
    It appears as if you are happy with the secret meetings that produced PA13-3

    Does Lenny Benedetto = Sen. Williams ? You sure have many of the similar views on PA13-3 as Sen. Williams...

    You may wish to actually READ the complaint and PA13-3 ... prior to posting

    One does not have to be a high priced lawyer to read and present an analysis...your in-depth review is lacking so far.

    Try again.
    Last edited by davidmcbeth; 05-24-2013 at 01:01 PM. Reason: grammer

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    Regular Member Lenny Benedetto's Avatar
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    Then I suggest to you get off your ass and find an attorney that will take your case the way you feel it should be.
    You can certainly do that.
    I wish you better success than you have had at the BFPE!
    Oh and comparing me to Williams is nothing but childish on your part.
    Especially since I do more fighting for people rights in CT in a day then you have done in your entire life.
    The Connecticut Citizens Defense League is a non-partisan, grassroots organization devoted to advocating rights affirmed by the Constitutions of the United States of America and the State of Connecticut. We are especially dedicated to protecting the unalienable right of all citizens to keep and bear arms, for the defense of both self and state, through public enlightenment and legislative action.
    Join Here: http://www.ccdl.us/membership

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny Benedetto View Post
    Especially since I do more fighting for people rights in CT in a day then you have done in your entire life.
    I have gathered information showing the arms that local governments have in CT that demonstrate that ARs and other guns and mags that they now wish to ban of us have value for public defense and common defense. Yet the complaint does not provide the court with these facts and instead does not even mention this fact and its these facts that go to the heart of the Heller decision. I have provided a sampling of this information in my testimony to the task force earlier this year.

    I have forced the state to produce statements noting that the disclosure of a person's arms to another leads to a safety risk .. that can be used to argue infringement of 2nd amendment rights in the registration provisions of the act.

    Lets look at the complaint in some examples:

    Ex: P. 37 states "in common use" ... but no evidence to support this claim .. the court will not take judicial notice of this fact or legal conclusion IMO

    P. 43 .. rifles "commonly possessed" ... again no evidence to support this claim

    P. 53 also "commonly used" ...

    P. 105 also discusses "commonly used"

    P. 113 ... "commonly"

    P. 114 ... "commonly"

    P. 125 .... "common magazines"


    Plus others...the complaint talks about the effect of the previous federal AWB (no effect really) but fails to cite the FBI findings regarding this/these fact(s) that was issued several years ago.

    I offer a critical critique of the complaint and you responded in a manner that is inappropriate for a V.P.
    And now you don't like my response to your inappropriate response? Really?

    Connecticut is a fact pleading state and the complaint is written like we are a notice pleading state regarding some critical points IMO. You have the burden of providing facts that support the conclusions and I'm afraid that the current complaint will allow a judge to say that you did not state enough facts to have the case move forward.

    I hope that the complaint is amended ... if I can be of assistance please let me know.

    Regarding P 174 ... I called DESPP and the governor asking them for permission to purchase the now banned weapons so that I could compare them to see if they are copies or duplicates ... DESPP never even responded and the governor's office considered the query and then would not answer ... but the Benjamin v. Bailey case discussed this issue already ... I think that the B v. B case can be used against the state in the PA13-3 arguments when one looks at guns that local PDs own where one could say that its obvious that the guns being banned are copies, duplicates, or have similar capabilities as those now being banned... I don't mind P 174 though, alternate pleadings are fine in complaints.

    And I have filed pro se complaints in several states and federal courts and appeals too ... so I am no stranger to the pratfalls of the construction of civil complaints. I looked at the complaint as the defendants will....looking for reasons to get the case tossed. If one does not do this then you'll have trouble. And you don't have to be a lawyer to read a complaint and give an examination of it.

    You are free not to amend the complaint ... I predict that not amending it will result in all or several of the counts being stricken.

    I was collecting all of the above information on my end to file a federal case to strike 52-202(a) AWB provisions and to overturn the B v. B case. With the passage of PA13-3 I thought that my efforts would not be needed.

    And interestingly, I filed several FOI requests including one to DESPP and one to the Capitol Police ... looking for records relating to arms that we now have to disclose via registration requirements of the act. They both responded that if they had to tell us the arms that they had that this would create a safety risk (ie risk of injury or death) to them. Well well well ... how interesting....seems like we have to expose ourselves to risk but they don't? The courts likely would not see a difference but would rule that party A disclosing to party B would create a safety risk and this risk would result in a conclusion that this risk would be an infringement under the 2nd amendment. IMO

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    Quote Originally Posted by Lenny Benedetto View Post
    Then I suggest to you get off your ass and find an attorney that will take your case the way you feel it should be.
    You can certainly do that.
    I wish you better success than you have had at the BFPE!
    Oh and comparing me to Williams is nothing but childish on your part.
    Especially since I do more fighting for people rights in CT in a day then you have done in your entire life.
    I have already filed cases that may get PA13-3 stricken ... well before you filed yours. Whaaaat? And did this pro se. There are advantages to doing things pro se v. having a lawyer outside of costs ....

    The loss at BFPE? I expected and hoped for this outcome. I was intending on creating a record for an appeal. I think that I highlighted almost all of the failings of the BFPE as many folks have noted over time. Some folks don't understand that a reviewing court would only see a written transcript ... so one can yell at the top of his lungs at a hearing...a transcript will not show this...one can wait 20 min. to answer .. the transcript will not show the time delay...etc.

    And its odd that CCDL has not offered any advice in respect to my two threads trying to get opinions of folks regarding what the local authorities and the BFPE can actually mandate in the DPS permit application form and BFPE questionnaire ...

    CCDL is not aggressive enough --- being a Libertarian...this is my opinion ... Recall earlier this year, CCDL was thinking about agreeing with some of the proposed bills to appear to be "sensitive" or "cooperating" after the Newtown killings? I was not, the Newtown killings did not alter the words or meaning of the 2nd amendment...the state has tried to use the Newtown shootings in some of my judicial cases too .. it did not generate the desired response. I think using the killings as a talking point is completely outrageous and I made that point clearly understood to the state. CCDL changed its position quickly to oppose many of the gun related bills. I applauded this stance.

    I do wish luck in the outcome of the complaint.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Ex: P. 37 states "in common use" ... but no evidence to support this claim .. the court will not take judicial notice of this fact or legal conclusion IMO
    First, that is not a "legal conclusion." It is a factual allegation. A legal conclusion would be something like "it is unlawful for states to ban firearms in common use." Second, this is a complaint, not a brief so the plaintiffs do not, at this stage, need to plead all evidence to support their factual allegations in the complaint. If the defendants want to dismiss some or all of the complaint at this stage, they can move under Federal Rule of Civil Procedure 12(b)(6) arguing that the plaintiffs have "failed to state a claim upon which relief can be granted." That is essentially saying that even if every fact alleged in the complaint is true, then the defendants still are not liable for any violation of law. When federal courts evaluate that motion, however, they assume all pleaded facts to be true.

    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Ex: P. 37 states "in common use" ... but no evidence to support this claim .. the court will not take judicial notice of this fact or legal conclusion IMO
    Connecticut is a fact pleading state and the complaint is written like we are a notice pleading state regarding some critical points IMO. You have the burden of providing facts that support the conclusions and I'm afraid that the current complaint will allow a judge to say that you did not state enough facts to have the case move forward.
    Connecticut state court rules require fact pleading. All federal courts -- including the district of CT -- require notice pleading only. See FRCP 8(a).

    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    You are free not to amend the complaint ... I predict that not amending it will result in all or several of the counts being stricken.
    See my comment above regarding 12(b)(6). This case should be decided on summary judgment but the plaintiffs are free to move for dismissal prior to discovery.
    Last edited by LibertyUberAlles; 06-04-2013 at 12:09 AM.

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    They will file a motion to dismiss for failure to state facts in respect to the counts ... some thing are missing though...like the lack of attacking the e-cert. I wonder why.

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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    They will file a motion to dismiss for failure to state facts in respect to the counts ... some thing are missing though...like the lack of attacking the e-cert. I wonder why.
    There is no such motion in federal court "to dismiss for failure to state facts in respect to the counts." They could, of course, file a motion for summary judgment under Rule 56(a) arguing that "there is no genuine dispute as to any material fact and the movant is entitled to judgment as a matter of law." The judge set a 90 day deadline for the defendants to file motions to dismiss under Rule 12. We have to wait until then to see what they do. They can, of course, move for an extension of time and they will get such an extension as of right so we may have to wait a bit longer.

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