For Immediate Release: 6/29/2010
BELLEVUE, WA – The Second Amendment Foundation on Monday filed a federal lawsuit in North Carolina, seeking a permanent injunction against the governor, local officials and local governments from declaring states of emergency under which private citizens are prohibited from exercising their right to bear arms.
Joining SAF in this lawsuit are Grass Roots North Carolina – the state’s leading gun rights organization, and three private citizens, Michael Bateman, Virgil Green and Forrest Minges, Jr. Named as defendants in the federal lawsuit are North Carolina Gov. Beverly Perdue; Reuben Young, secretary of the Department of Crime Control and Public Safety; Stokes County and the City of King. The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of North Carolina.
The lawsuit contends that state statutes that forbid the carrying of firearms and ammunition during declared states of emergency are unconstitutional. Plaintiffs also contend that a North Carolina law that allows government officials to prohibit the purchase, sale and possession of firearms and ammunition are also unconstitutional because they forbid the exercise of Second Amendment rights as affirmed by Monday’s Supreme Court ruling in McDonald v. City of Chicago, the landmark Second Amendment ruling that incorporated the Second Amendment to the states.
SAF and the Illinois State Rifle Association took the McDonald Case to the Supreme Court.
“Through this lawsuit in North Carolina,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb,” we intend to show that state emergency powers statutes that allow government officials to suspend fundamental civil rights, including the right to bear arms, are unconstitutional and therefore should be nullified. Citizens do not surrender their civil rights just because of a natural or man-made disaster.”
SAF is once again being represented by attorney Alan Gura, who led the legal effort in the McDonald case and also won the historic Heller ruling that overturned the District of Columbia handgun ban in 2008. Local counsel are Andrew Tripp and Kearns Davis with the firm of Brooks, Pierce, McLendon, Humphrey & Leonard, LLC in Raleigh.
The Second Amendment Foundation (www.saf.org) is the nation's oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 650,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control. SAF has previously funded successful firearms-related suits against the cities of Los Angeles; New Haven, CT; and San Francisco on behalf of American gun owners, a lawsuit against the cities suing gun makers and an amicus brief and fund for the Emerson case holding the Second Amendment as an individual right.