This is the first post-Heller casewhere the Supreme Court may explore what a fundamental and individual 2A right means:
In its brief to the Court, the Second Amendment Foundation explains:
"That the Government seeks to find an individual’s fundamental, enumerated rights extinguished by a guilty plea is also significant. Like other enumerated fundamental rights, Second Amendment rights may be relinquished only upon a voluntary, knowing, and intelligent waiver. Respondent cannot now be deprived of a fundamental right as a consequence of his voluntary plea, where such loss could not have been contemplated at the time he pled guilty."
Says the Sentencing Law and Policy blog:
"Here are the basics from this post at SCOTUSblog:
Though it appears that Hayes is only about a technical statutory issue, the case could end up being about a lot more if Heller declares that there is an enforceable individual right to keep a gun. Here are the key facts in Hayes from the Fourth Circuit opinion on which cert was sought by the Justice Department:
In the second grant Monday, the Court agreed to hear a Justice Department appeal in U.S. v. Hayes (07-608), urging it to clarify the federal law that makes it a crime to have a gun after being convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence. The specific issue is whether the federal ban at issue requires that the convicted individual and the victim in the underlying crime have a domestic relationship — that is, as a spouse, parent or guardian.
This fascinating little case should help everyone understand why Solicitor General Paul Clement is justifiably concerned about a broad pro-gun constitutional ruling in Heller. If the Second Amendment truly protects an individual right to domestic self protection, prosecuting Randy Edward Hayes for having a Winchester in his home seems very constitutionally troublesome. And, at the very least, if Heller says anything nice about the constitution and gun possession, the doctrine of constitutional doubt ought to impact how the statutory issue in Hayes plays out."
In 1994, [Randy Edward] Hayes pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor battery offense under West Virginia law, in the magistrate court of Marion County, West Virginia (the "1994 State Offense"). The victim of the 1994 State Offense was Hayes's then wife, Mary Ann (now Mary Carnes), with whom he lived and had a child. As a result of the 1994 State Offense, Hayes was sentenced to a year of probation.
Ten years later, on July 25, 2004, the authorities in Marion County were summoned to Hayes's home in response to a domestic violence 911 call. When police officers arrived at Hayes's home, he consented to a search thereof, and a Winchester rifle was discovered. Hayes was arrested and, on January 4, 2005, indicted in federal court on three charges of possessing firearms after having been convicted of an MCDV, in violation of 18 U.S.C. §§ 922(g)(9) and 924(a)(2).