Wednesday, April 3, 2013

SAF Wins Preliminary Injunction In New Mexico Case

The Second Amendment Foundation was granted a preliminary injunction in their case challenging the state of New Mexico's requirement requiring US citizenship for the granting of a concealed carry permit. Chief Judge for the District of New Mexico M. Christina Armijo granted the preliminary injunction in Jackson et al v. King et al on Friday.

The decision published on Monday concluded:
The Court, applying the heightened standard applicable to disfavored injunctions, finds that Plaintiffs have satisfied each of the requirements for obtaining preliminary injunctive relief.

Defendant Hubbard has failed to establish that a legal permanent resident alien such as Mr. Jackson poses a greater risk of danger by virtue of his or her status alone, than do citizens, with respect to the carrying of concealed weapons.

The Court further concludes that the citizenship provision in Section 29-19- 14(A)(1) is severable from the remainder of the Concealed Handgun Carry Act.

IT IS THEREFORE HEREBY ORDERED that Plaintiffs’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction is GRANTED and Defendant Hubbard is preliminarily enjoined from enforcing the citizenship provision in Section 29-19-14(A)(1) of the Concealed Handgun Carry Act pending resolution of this action.
In a separate order, Chief Judge Armijo dismissed the case against NM Attorney General Gary King for failure to state a claim upon which relief can be granted and for lack of standing. She did allow the case to continue against Bill Hubbard in his official capacity as Director of the Special Investigations Section of the New Mexico Department of Public Safety. It was Mr. Hubbard that was enjoined in the above decision.

The Second Amendment Foundation released the following statement yesterday on the preliminary injunction:
BELLEVUE, WA — The Second Amendment Foundation has won a preliminary injunction against a part of the State of New Mexico’s concealed carry statute on the grounds that it violates the right of equal protection under the law.

The ruling, handed down by the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico, was signed by M. Christina Armijo, the chief district judge.

SAF filed the legal action on behalf of John Jackson, a permanent legal resident alien who could not obtain a concealed carry permit under existing New Mexico statute because he is not a U.S. citizen. SAF has challenged similar bans in other jurisdictions.

“We’re delighted with the outcome of this challenge,” said SAF Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb. “The right of self-protection should not be denied to people who are active and productive members of the community simply because they do not meet the citizenship requirement of a state statute.”

In reaching its ruling, the court applied a heightened standard of scrutiny and concluded that the citizenship provision of New Mexico’s law is severable from the remainder of the state Concealed Handgun Carry Act.

“While the law allowed Mr. Jackson to openly carry a firearm,” Gottlieb noted, “there are certain areas and circumstances when doing so would be imprudent or potentially in violation of other legal restrictions. This ruling will make it possible for Mr. Jackson and other legal resident aliens to exercise their right to bear arms.”

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