Federal Court Rules Connecticut Can’t Suspend Gun Permit Processing During Emergency

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A win in Connecticut. A US District Court has issued a preliminary injunction blocking the Governor of Connecticut’s executive order allowing the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection to suspend taking fingerprints (necessary to purchase a firearm) during the declared coronavirus emergency.

In Connecticut, you cannot acquire, possess, or carry a handgun without a state permit or certificate. To get a permit or certificate, you must go to the local police or the Connecticut Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (“DESPP”) to have an officer there collect your fingerprints for purposes of a criminal background check.

Under Connecticut law, employees for the local police and DESPP may not refuse to collect the fingerprints of a person who seeks to apply for a handgun permit or certificate. In light of the exigencies of the COVID-19 pandemic, however, the Governor of Connecticut issued an executive order nearly three months ago that indefinitely suspends this law for so long as the COVID-19 emergency may continue.

The executive order leaves it to the discretion of state and local police whether to conduct fingerprinting, thus empowering the police to functionally deny the right of new applicants to acquire, carry, and possess a handgun. Consistent with the Governor’s order, DESPP and some unknown number of police departments have suspended all fingerprint collection activities that the law used to require them to do….

The Governor’s Executive Order No. 7E and the Commissioner’s implementation of the order plainly burden conduct protected by the Second Amendment. Because these actions result in the suspension of fingerprinting while not suspending the statutes that make fingerprinting necessary to issuance of a handgun permit or certificate, they categorically foreclose a person who does not already have a permit or certification from acquiring a handgun if the person’s fingerprints are not already on file. One cannot exercise the right to possess a handgun in the home for self-defense if one is prevented from acquiring a handgun in the first place….

US District Court opinion in Connecticut Citizens Defense League v. Lamont

comments

  1. avatar 2aguy says:

    People wonder how did Germany descend into the madness that it did in the 1930s….how did neighbors stand by as their friends were marched off…….well, you are watching it happen in real time……….. the fascists who burned cities are demanding more and more, and the politicians are giving in, the normal people are confessing to crimes they didn’t commit…….this madness needs to stop here because it doesn’t get better going forward when you give in to the fascists, one insane demand at a time…

    1. avatar Ian in Transit says:

      The long version of your summary for those with the time.

      https://www.stephenhalbrook.com/article-nazilaw.pdf

      1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

        Thank you. I’ll download this to read later this evening.

        1. avatar HoundDogDave says:

          As will I. (well, I won’t have time today, but I’ll read it tomorrow)

    2. avatar Miner49er says:

      “how did neighbors stand by as their friends were marched off”

      That’s easy, an autocratic dictator wannabe initiated a campaign of misinformation and deception, vilifying particular groups of people as “murderers and rapists” in order to divide the population and pit one group against another.

      A militaristic, supreme leader called for a ban on certain religions, exacerbating religious differences and promoting intolerance between people of faith.

      When the people protested, the supreme leader initiated a military crack down, using national army troops in a domestic situation, in violation of their own laws.

      Encouraging law-enforcement agents to be abusive to suspects, speaking ominously of employing massive weapons and tactics, and engaging in mass incarceration of citizens whose only crime is Assembling in the public spaces and Petitioning the government for a redress of grievances.

      Building concentration, er, ‘detention facilities’ to hold in rough conditions immigrants who seek asylum, denying them due process.

      Wow, how striking!

      1. avatar Ing says:

        Take a good hard look at what Big Tech is up to and who they favor politically. While you’re at it, look at what the progressive, intersectional wing of a certain political party is doing in the current climate of unrest and rioting. After you’ve done that tell me…where are the fascists, exactly?

        1. avatar Montana Actual says:

          I saw a video gaining popularity yesterday about a guy who was confirmed ANTIFA, and when he got in enough shit to federally fuck him, the one thing he used to defend himself was the constitution. lol. Oh the irony. Long story short, he’s no longer siding with the fascists.

          The craziest part about all this is how these people are actually fascists themselves, and they don’t even realize it.

        2. avatar Ed Schrade says:

          Instead of the insurgency ( laughingly called liberals ) taking over the media / big tech as Goebbles did, our media IS the insurgency. Or a branch of the insurgency.

      2. avatar Someone says:

        Used his party’s control of mass media to foment hate against certain race by blaming members of that race of crimes they have never commited and of causing the bad conditions of life of other race.

        Used indoctrinated violent groups of mainly dumb, young people mixed with carrier criminals to intimidate the political opposition, beat up and destroy property of anyone who didn’t support his ideology.

        Organized huge mass gatherings in the streets to energize his supporters and flex his political muscles, trying to scare his ideological opponents.

        Truly, how fitting!

      3. avatar Hydguy says:

        Yes, Obozo, your chocolate god, did that.

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      more and more…[and somewhat reluctantly]…it looks like we’re going to have to vote for Trump…the left is clearly out of control…..and we need more conservative judges….

  2. avatar Ransom says:

    Dogs and cats.. …Living together!…

    1. avatar DinWA says:

      Human sacrifice, mass hysteria!

  3. avatar Geoff "Guns. LOTS of guns..." PR says:

    Same problem in Florida. It took a threat from AG Moody to Ag. Sec. Nikki Fried to get her to resume issuing carry permits. Disgusting.

    Things are getting precarious on the freedom of speech arena. Read this, in case the WSJ firewalls it :

    “The purge of senior editors at progressive newspapers this weekend is no cause for cheering. Their resignations are another milestone in the march of identity politics and cancel culture through our liberal institutions, and American journalism and democracy will be worse for it.

    The long-time editor of the Philadelphia Inquirer, who’d seen the publication through difficult times, was pushed out over a headline, “Buildings Matter, Too.” It was atop a piece by architecture critic Inga Saffron, who worried that buildings damaged by violence could “leave a gaping hole in the heart of Philadelphia.” Staff members deemed the headline an offense to Black Lives Matter. They protested, and no amount of apologizing or changes to the headline were enough. Editor Stan Wischnowski didn’t last the week.

    At the New York Times, editorial page editor James Bennet resigned Sunday after a staff uproar over an op-ed by a U.S. Senator. Arkansas Republican Tom Cotton wrote that military troops should be sent to restore public order in American cities when the police are overwhelmed. A staff revolt deemed the piece fascist, unconstitutional, and too offensive for adults to read and decide for themselves.

    Our editorial last week opposed deploying active-duty troops, but the idea is legal under the Insurrection Act. George H.W. Bush deployed troops in 1992 to quell riots in Los Angeles after the Rodney King verdict, and other Presidents have done it too.

    Mr. Bennet defended the op-ed on Friday as part of his attempt to broaden debate in his pages, and at first so did publisher A.G. Sulzberger. But Mr. Sulzberger changed his mind the same day, suddenly declaring that the op-ed he had defended had not received proper editing and should not have been published. By Sunday Mr. Bennet, as true-blue a progressive as you can find, was out the door. James Dao, the opinion editor who had signed off on the Cotton op-ed, was reassigned.

    An ostensibly independent opinion section was ransacked because the social-justice warriors in the newsroom opposed a single article espousing a view that polls show tens of millions of Americans support if the police can’t handle rioting and violence. The publisher failed to back up his editors, which means the editors no longer run the place. The struggle sessions on Twitter and Slack channels rule.

    All of this shows the extent to which American journalism is now dominated by the same moral denunciation, “safe space” demands, and identity-politics dogmas that began in the universities. The agents of this politics now dominate nearly all of America’s leading cultural institutions—museums, philanthropy, Hollywood, book publishers, even late-night talk shows.

    On matters deemed sacrosanct—and today that includes the view that America is root-and-branch racist—there is no room for debate. You must admit your failure to appreciate this orthodoxy and do penance, or you will not survive in the job.

    Some of our friends on the right are pleased because they say all of this merely exposes what has long been true. But this takeover of the Times and other liberal bastions means that there are ever fewer institutions that will defend free inquiry and the contest of ideas that once defined American liberalism.”

    https://www.wsj.com/articles/cancel-culture-journalism-11591658340

    1. avatar SAFEupstateFML says:

      Well that’s terrifying and the parallels between brown shirts and antifa/cancel culture/occupy/BLM/other various names of the same cult continue to grow.

    2. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      Geoff,

      A large part of the problem facing the publishers that just forced out their editors: they are struggling to make a profit and fear losing what few readers they already have because of contentious content.

      Of course they are struggling to make a profit because they produce garbage content in a venue that is not competitive. If they ever get around to fixing that core problem, they will be able to produce contentious content once again.

      1. avatar Geoff "Guns. LOTS of guns..." PR says:

        ” If they ever get around to fixing that core problem,…”

        “Cancel-Culture” is the fix, and dissent will not be tolerated.

        Welcome to the ‘new normal’. Strap in, it’s gonna be a bumpy ride on the road to totalitarianism…

        1. avatar Rusty - Molon Labe - Chains says:

          The Socialist Left (communists in all but name) are on the attack.

          Think they are only going after statues of Robert E. Lee or Christopher Columbus?
          https://www.breitbart.com/entertainment/2020/06/10/nolte-hbo-max-blacklists-gone-with-the-wind/
          Check out the list of old and not so old movies they will be vandalizing.

          You are in their sights as well, imagine what will happen when Facebook, YouTube and all the rest start collecting your information and giving it to the BLM approved group that will replace your local police. Watch too many gun videos? Like too many disapproved items? Display the US flag at your home? Coming first to Minneapolis and then a city near you, the Stasi will be watching!

        2. avatar Someone says:

          Commies are on the offensive, but that doesn’t mean they will necessarily win in the end. Once their opposition finally realizes that there is no peace to be had by bowing to the enemy, we may see some pushback. It took better part of the century to kick commies to the curb in Russia and about 40 years in Eastern Europe. It cost countless lives in the meantime. We need to fight communism and it’s pre-stage socialism now, before it’s too late.

      2. avatar Mark N. says:

        It has more to do with the fact that more and more people get their news on line, and as a result, advertising revenues have drastically fallen for print news. Subscription prices and individual sales alone cannot support a print newspaper.

        1. avatar Someone says:

          News papers are financed by advertising. (And propaganda spewing billionaires) Price of subscription doesn’t even cover the paper, ink and distribution. No eyes to catch, no money to make.

    3. avatar MouseGun says:

      I love the fact that after all everything, they’re still trying to pretend like they’re the good guys.
      They were the ones who flung the city gates open and welcomed the barbarian hordes in with open arms, and now, amidst all the raping and pillaging, they’re trying to convince us that they only had good intentions.

      1. avatar Someone says:

        The road to Hell is paved with such trash.

    4. avatar Rusty - Molon Labe - Chains says:

      Sent this this morning to both of my US Senators:

      As my Senator, I need you to stand firm in support of the police. While there are some problems in local law enforcement, body cams and training are slowly clearing away those issues. Trump is right about standing up to the mob that has been rioting in the big cities.

      The mob has run wild in many of our major cities and many seeming cowardly politicians are talking about defunding the police in an attempt to appease these mobs. Though in reality what they really want to do is replace the police with something resembling the East German Stasi. We see Big Tech is completely on board with this concept as they are already censoring unapproved thought, it would be a simple software update for them to go from just deleting your post to reporting your thought crime to the authorities. We have seen what this mob thinks justice is and how ready they are to hand it out to anyone within their reach.

      I expect this kind of behavior from BLM, and the Democrats since they grabbed that tiger by the tail and are forced to hold on tight. I do not expect to see this from Republicans, yet I saw Mitt Romney marching with BLM in what appears to be a cowardly attempt at appeasement. While I was never a fan of his this seems another craven attempt to keep them from denouncing him for some thought crime. Please stand up to the mob and the Democrats who are trying to ride that mob into power, only by standing up to them can we hope to hold on to the things that make America a great country.

  4. avatar Shire-man says:

    Meh. CT departments will just put one officer on it and set office hours for the 5th Tuesday of every month morning 9-9:15.

    CT’s permit review board is notorious for shenanigans like that. At one time you had to wait close to 7 years for a hearing. No idea what it’s like now.

    The ability of bureaucracy to wiggle around law or ruling it doesn’t like is infinite and when it takes the law months, years or decades to getting around to slapping that bureaucracy down the damage is already done.

    1. avatar SAFEupstateFML says:

      Didn’t realize Connecticut was as bad (maybe worse) than New York. Don’t they have laws against normal people owning body armor as well?

      1. avatar MrMax says:

        It can be sold, but it has to be face-to-face. Eliminates buying online. I guess you have to be man (or woman) enough to look people in the eye when you’re purchasing body armor. And that law solves what? If someone bent on self-destruction wants to wreak havoc and wear armor to last long enough to do more damage, you think they might send a friend, or relative, or paid purchaser to pick up the armor? Like most of these so-called “laws”, there is a big difference between establishing what is right in a society and what is wrong and attempting to legislate “safety”. You can’t enact “safety laws” without sacrificing freedom.

    2. avatar Hannibal says:

      That’s how NY and MD do things. It doesn’t say anything is impossible, but it makes it practically so. Hell, even NJ “technically” issues carry permits (on ‘good cause’).

  5. avatar MrMax says:

    Fingerprints – yet another hoop to have to jump through to exercise our 2A right. What, our driver’s license or passport isn’t enough? They want our fingerprints to do a trace through a criminal database to see if you match up? Or to keep you on file “just in case” you commit a crime with your new firearm? It was enough that I had to do not only this, but submit to, yet another, background check for my CCW permit. Again, so the government gives me “permission” to exercise my 2A right to defend myself? The only redeeming part was the 2 hour long class required for the CCW permit that was taught by an instructor thoroughly informed on the law, using firearms safely, and the responsibility one has when using a firearm. Sorry, guys…just venting

    1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

      Exactly this. ^^

      You know what would have been even better news? That this court decision stated BGCs are unconstitutional altogether.

      I know we keep harping on this same point, but it must be said over and over and over. There has been too much “compromise” over the decades in the area of gun rights for the sake of appeasing the Left (just look at how many politicians are tripping over themselves today out of a sudden “agreement” with #blacklivesmatter and #defundthepolice). We need to hammer the issue of “permission vs. rights” to the point where we begin winning court battles. After all, 16 States have now seen the light.

    2. avatar Montana Actual says:

      Start building now.

      Stop asking permission.

  6. avatar NavyLDO73 says:

    For clarification, in CT (where I live) you MUST have a state-issued permit to purchase a handgun, a long gun(rifle or shotgun), or ammunition. By not processing any permits due to the Executive Order the state stopped anyone (who previously didn’t have a permit) from being able to even get a box of shells for their previously-purchased shotgun. I work in a gun store and that was a rude awakening to folks who had never previously considered buying a firearm.

    1. avatar Roh-Dog says:

      Had to plus-up friends and family without ‘permission slips’ due to this stupid law, like a modern day Johnny Appleseed but with ammo.
      I’ve been dollar cost averaging since Sandy Hook and the last two years had been great, but with many ranges shutdown the usage has fallen off a cliff.
      My forethought, others’ gain.

      1. avatar I Haz A Question says:

        I did the same with some co-workers and family relatives who all had allowed themselves to run out of ammo before the riots started (surprising how many ‘former Fudds’ were in the habit of buying ammo for the rare trip to the range and consuming it all with none to spare). Gave them each a box, and they all commented that they need to improve their preparedness for the future.

        Eyes are being opened. That’s a good thing.

  7. avatar Jim Bob says:

    “In Connecticut, you cannot acquire, possess, or carry a handgun without a state permit or certificate”. I’m pretty sure you CAN, but you MAY not – at least, not legally. Words printed on paper don’t stop violent criminals.

  8. avatar burley says:

    Great! Now if we could just get a court to prosecute every state that has permit requirements for the exercize of 2A rights.

  9. avatar Survivordude1090 says:

    As a CT prisoner all I have to say is

    WHOOPY [email protected]#$ING DOO.

    They’ll still drag their feet to the point where this “win” is virtually meaningless.

  10. avatar Don from CT says:

    This is a symbolic victory. Rather than refusing to print applicants, the local PDs will instead take 1 applicant per week and claim they are in compliance.

  11. avatar Sam I Am says:

    I’m waiting to see what sort of mental jujitsu Connecticut tries to use in getting the appeal transferred to the 9th Circuit.

    1. avatar Roger J says:

      It’s my understanding the 9th Circus is one more Trump appointee away from being flipped conservative. If true this is very good news.

      1. avatar Ralph says:

        Yeah, and the Supreme Court is also one Biden appointee away from bending us over now that Roberts has succumbed to the lure of unbridled power.

  12. avatar Don from CT says:

    The difference between places like Florida and places like CT or MA is that you need a license just to buy a gun to keep in the home.

    In FL, you can still go out and buy a gun to keep in your home without any licenses.

    What difference does it make? You ask??

    Heller and MacDonald specifically addressed the right to buy a gun and keep it in your home.

    So while FL’s problem is a problem. Its not in violation of law created by a Supreme Court decision.

    1. avatar Ed Schrade says:

      Have to wonder when Supreme Court “opinion” became law, thought the legislature passed laws. If we go with the “letter of the law” scenario, then all permits and restrictions are a violation to our civil rights and are thus illegal. Wish we had honest constitutionalist judges on the court instead of political hacks.

  13. avatar Montana Actual says:

    If only there was a way to purchase parts and avoid the tyranny…

    1. avatar The Truth About I Will Not Comply says:

      It’s too bad there isn’t an affordable 3D printer and an easy electrochemical barrel making process.

      1. avatar Montana Actual says:

        You can buy parts without a paper trail if you know where to look. Especially at the “local” level.

  14. avatar Someone says:

    So not only are we treated like criminals when we decide to exercise our unalienable, constitutionally protected human rights, but now Governor can issue an executive order that indefinitely suspends a law that says the police has to bother to do it?
    Cradle of liberty, land of the free and home of the brave, what happened to you?

  15. avatar Debbie W. says:

    I decided to buy a firearm. No you cannot do that. We democRats say you can do without a firearm because we say so and we alone know what is best for the peasants. That is not how it works democRat dirtbags. You and your ilk cannot use your proven disdain for the 2A and concoct a sneaky rule that reeks discrimination against firearm purchasers. It’s like the way the democRat Party discriminated against Black Americans who wanted to enjoy a restaurant meal. Black Americans wanted something. Firearm buyers want something. Both denied by pompous democRat Ratbassturds with the same sick mindset.

  16. avatar AD of the Hinterlands says:

    There’s plenty of case law on this. The earliest that I’m immediately aware of is the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937. Since Congress had no authority to ban a plant outright, a tax was imposed. One could not possess any amount of the plant without the required tax stamps. One must also be in possession so that the proper number of stamps could be issued, thereby creating a legal “Catch-22.” Furthermore, none of those tax stamps were ever made.
    This was all declared unconstitutional which led to the Controlled Substances Act. The newly created DEA was now free to schedule anything as they pleased and “create” the law.
    Other executive agencies (ATF) took that precedent and ran with it. Bump stocks weren’t machine guns and now they are. Its all a very simple end-run around the Constitution, only now its on a state-by-state basis. Very nice! Isn’t it?

    1. avatar frank speak says:

      apparently congress has deemed that attitudes [and laws] regarding firearm’s ownership can vary dramatically from state to state and has chosen to keep out of the debate at the federal level…thus the great disparity…the SCOTUS could change this…but also seem reluctant…even when their rulings have been all but ignored and even defied……

    2. avatar Montana Actual says:

      And people wonder why the Tea Party still exists….

      Taxes are fucken illegal. What are we at now… 37-38% of income is taxed? Something like that… just ridiculous.

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