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Thread: NRA Lawsuit: New Orleans Gun Owners' Rights Violated During Katrina Firearm Seizures

  1. #1
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    http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,318478,00.html



    NEW ORLEANS— The National Rifle Association has hired private investigators to find hundreds of people whose firearms were seized by city police in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, according to court papers filed this week.

    The NRA is trying to locate gun owners for a federal lawsuit that the lobbying group filed against Mayor Ray Nagin and Police Superintendent Warren Riley over the city's seizure of firearms after the Aug. 29, 2005, hurricane.

    In the lawsuit, the NRA and the Second Amendment Foundation claim the city violated gun owners' constitutional right to bear arms and left them "at the mercy of roving gangs, home invaders, and other criminals" after Katrina.

    The NRA says the city seized more than 1,000 guns that weren't part of any criminal investigation after the hurricane. Police have said they took only guns that had been stolen or found in abandoned homes.

    NRA lawyer Daniel Holliday said investigators have identified about 300 of the gun owners and located about 75 of them. Some of them could be called to testify during a trial, he added.

    "Finding these folks has been a nightmare," Holliday said. "That is really the guts of our case — to establish that there was indeed a pattern of the police going out and taking people's guns without any legal reason to do so."

    /**/ In April 2006, police made about 700 firearms available for owners to claim if they could present a bill of sale or an affidavit with the weapon's serial number.
    An attorney for the city and a police department spokesman didn't return a reporter's telephone calls Wednesday.

    Alan Gottlieb, founder of the Bellevue, Wash.-based Second Amendment Foundation, said the police department has returned only about 100 of the 1,000 seized guns.
    "Obviously, we don't expect the city to find everybody. We only wanted to see a good-faith effort, and that's what the city didn't do," Gottlieb added. "It's a bad example to let them get away with it."

    In court papers filed Monday, NRA attorneys say finding the gun owners has been difficult because the storm has scattered so many residents.

    New Orleans had an estimated 455,000 residents before Katrina, but less than two-thirds of that number live there now.

    The NRA is asking for a delay in the trial, set to begin Feb. 19, saying they need more time to find gun owners. U.S. District Judge Carl Barbier had not yet ruled on the request Wednesday.

    Also http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2007/...cated-Guns.php

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    State Researcher dng's Avatar
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    You know what makes this story even better? The IACP (The International Association of Chiefs of Police) held their annual conference in...guess where...yep, New Orleans; in support of the "heroic" efforts of the New Orleans Katrina disaster. Enough to make my blood boil!

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    Long overdue - I hope someone gets justly racked over this. I've seen videos and read reliable reports of confiscations that contradict this "we only took stolen and abandoned guns" bit. How would they know whether a gun was stolen under the circumstances anyway? It's preposterous on its face.

    -ljp

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    Video of accostation:
    http://youtube.com/watch?v=-taU9d26wT4

    There was an argument in another forum about the officers involved in this taped incident. They were accused of being California Highway Patrol, and therefore would not be familiar with Louisiana laws.

    This still image:
    http://img179.imageshack.us/img179/9240/lspjd7.jpg
    teaches that the Louisiana State Police were directly involved in the incident. The officer on the right is CHP, though.

    (After all, if I was a LSP commander and started deputizing other states' officers I would assign at least 1 LSP officer to direct the groups in accordance with our laws)

    This article:
    http://www.reason.com/news/show/32966.html
    was written right after Katrina occured and explains the capabilities of the Louisiana government when in a state of emergency and that the governor may, in fact, impose gun regulations.

    Quote:
    "Louisiana statutory law does allow some restrictions on firearms during extraordinary conditions.One statute says that after the Governor proclaims a state of emergency (as Governor Blanco has done), "the chief law enforcement officer of the political subdivision affected by the proclamation may...promulgate orders...regulating and controlling the possession, storage, display, sale, transport and use of firearms, other dangerous weapons and ammunition." But the statute does not, and could not, supersede the Louisiana Constitution, which declares that "The right of each citizen to keep and bear arms shall not be abridged, but this provision shall not prevent the passage of laws to prohibit the carrying of weapons concealed on the person."

    The power of "regulating and controlling" is not the same as the power of "prohibiting and controlling." The emergency statute actually draws this distinction in its language, which refers to "prohibiting" price-gouging, sale of alcohol, and curfew violations, but only to "regulating and controlling" firearms. Accordingly, the police superintendent's order "prohibiting" firearms possession is beyond his lawful authority. It is an illegal order."



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    Accomplished Advocate color of law's Avatar
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    Out of my cold dead hands!!! Does that sound familiar?

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    color of law wrote:
    Out of my cold dead hands!!! Does that sound familiar?
    Sounds familiar, I like your style , Sir!

    TrueBrit.

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    I am opposing this action. I'm talking about the "Police Officer Disarmament Lawsuit."

    You cannot get me to support the actions of Negotiate Rights Away in passing what is clearly gun control legislation. If this lawsuit is successful, it may just set the precedent that police departments cannot acquire guns (from citizens) when they want to. Police officer disarmament is what it is.

    Clearly, the NRA should be focusing its efforts on making sure that people who are prohibited from owning guns can still purchase them. That is a much more worthwhile cause.



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