The Calguns Foundation Issues Statement Regarding Ninth Circuit Decision in Right-to-Carry Second Amendment Litigation

SAN FRANCISCO – In response to the August 15, 2016, Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals decision in the consolidated cases of Peruta v. San Diego and Adam Richards, et al. v. Yolo County Sheriff Ed Prieto, The Calguns Foundation issued the following statement:

While the Ninth Circuit’s decision to deny reviewing its wrongly-decided opinion is disappointing, it is far from surprising.
And though the outcome of Richards v. Prieto is disappointing, CGF is absolutely committed to advancing Second Amendment rights.
The Calguns Foundation is already hard at work updating our Carry License Sunshine and Compliance Initiative research and working on pre-litigation planning.
And as part of our important ongoing program to help law-abiding Californians carry for self-defense, we are currently acquiring and reviewing the policies of all California sheriffs and major city police chiefs for unlawful or unconstitutional carry license policies to cooperatively remedy or litigate.
The Richards v. Prieto right-to-carry litigation was always about securing a meaningful and accessible way to lawfully carry handguns for self-defense in public, and The Calguns Foundation will continue doing just that in and out of the courts.

The Calguns Foundation ( is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that serves its members, supporters, and the public through educational, cultural, and judicial efforts to advance Second Amendment and related civil rights.

Judge Rules 2nd Amendment Rights are Not Second Class Rights, State of CA Fights Back

The Calguns Foundation scored a major victory earlier this year in Teixeira v. Alameda County in which the Court held that the Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms extends to protect gun retailers from being shut out of an area by government zoning ordinances.
But now that ruling is at risk.
Alameda County and the State of California are petitioning the court to rehear the case.
They didn’t like the ruling of the three-judge panel, so they want even more judges to weigh in on the issue.
Under the challenged Alameda County ordinance, a new gun store must be located at least 500 feet away from any residentially zoned district, elementary, middle or high school, preschool or day care center, another firearms sales business, or places where liquor is sold or served.
But, according to a scientific study conducted by CGF and other plaintiffs, which included a geographic study of the entirety of Alameda County, there are no parcels within the county that meet the ordinance’s requirements.
Writing for the majority, Judge O’Scannlain held:

“[The] right of law-abiding citizens to keep and to bear arms is not a second-class right, subject to an entirely different body of rules than the other Bill of Rights guarantees…”

“If the right of the people to keep and bear arms is to have any force, the people must have a right to acquire the very firearms they are entitled to keep and to bear. Indeed, where a right depends on subsidiary activity, it would make little sense if the right did not extend, at least partly, to such activity as well….Alameda County has offered nothing to undermine our conclusion that the right to purchase and to sell firearms is part and parcel of the historically recognized right to keep and to bear arms.” If you can’t tell already, this case is integral to our fundamental rights. We have already won once, but we need to be prepared to fight again if the court grants the wishes of Alameda County and the State.
Please make a tax-deductible donation to support Texeira v. Alameda County.
Help ensure that we have the resources to fight back against an ordinance that drove the ability to exercise gun rights out of an entire geographic area. 
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Civil Rights Groups File Appeal to Ninth Circuit in Fourteenth Amendment Equality Lawsuit Challenging Retired Government Employee Special Exemptions to California Gun Control Laws

The lawsuit, which challenges special exemptions to California’s “Gun-Free School Zone Act” for retired government employees, is being appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals
LOS ANGELES (August 8, 2016) – A civil rights lawsuit challenging a special, legislatively-created exemption to the “California Gun-Free School Zone Act” for retired government employees as unconstitutional under the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause is being appealed to the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals following Central District of California Federal District Court Judge Beverly Reid O’Connell’s August 5 order granting the State of California’s motion to dismiss.
The lawsuit, filed in April by 11 individuals and 4 nonprofit civil rights organizations, argues that the state’s many special statutory exemptions to gun laws for retired “peace officers” are a violation of their Fourteenth Amendment constitutional rights.
Judge O’Connell’s August 5 order held that the plaintiffs and retied peace officers are “sufficiently similarly situated to establish an equal protection claim” under the Equal Protection Clause. But, the Court held, review of “the Retired Peace Officer Exemption does not trigger heightened Scrutiny” because the “only group the Act treats differently is retired peace officers based on their status as former law enforcements officers.”
The Court’s order said that “the government interest here is one of private protection and self-defense” for the retired government employees, and, “[t]herefore, allowing retired peace officers an exemption from the general ban of carrying concealed weapons on school property is rationally related to the legitimate state interest of ensuring their protection.”
In its conclusion, the Court found that the Plaintiffs’ claim that the Retired Peace Officer Exemption is unconstitutional under the Equal Protection Clause cannot be cured by amendment because so long as the government has an interest in protecting retired peace officers, it will survive rational basis scrutiny.”
The Plaintiffs believe that, should the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause be so narrowly construed as to allow special exemptions like this one, millions of law-abiding people will be disenfranchised from their Second Amendment rights and continuously face political attacks with the support of government employee special interest groups like those who supported California Senate Bill 707, including the Association for Los Angeles Deputy Sheriffs, Fraternal Order of Police, California State Lodge, Peace Officers Research Association, Riverside Sheriffs’ Association, Sacramento County Deputy Sheriffs’ Association, Santa Ana Police Officers Association, and others.
According to institutional plaintiff Firearms Policy Foundation, the lawsuit’s purpose is to strike down as unconstitutional a number of exemptions that shield retired “peace officers” from the criminal provisions of California Penal Code Section 626.9, otherwise known as the “Gun-Free School Zone Act of 1995”, because retired “peace officers” and regular law-abiding people should be treated the same under the Equal Protection Clause.
More information about Garcia v. Harris, including relevant case filings, can be viewed or downloaded on the lawsuit’s Web site at

Ninth Circuit Hears Pro-Gun Haynie v. Harris

Yesterday, attorney Donald Kilmer once again represented law-abiding gun owners and The Calguns Foundation before the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals.
This time, Kilmer argued in the federal civil rights lawsuit Haynie v. Harris, which is aimed at forcing California Attorney General Kamala Harris to clarify what constitutes a so-called “assault weapon” so that innocent people don’t continue to be falsely arrested under vague and ambiguous terms.
Plaintiffs Mark Haynie and Brendan Richards were both arrested for being in possession of an unregistered “assault weapon,” even though their rifles were not.
At the time of his arrest in 2009, Plaintiff Mark Haynie’s firearm had a “bullet button” magazine locking device and was legal to possess.
Plaintiff Brendan Richards was jailed for an extraordinary six-day period before authorities realized that his seized weapons were not banned “assault weapons.”
The case was originally dismissed by U.S. District Judge Susan Illston, who held that there was no basis for either plaintiff to fear future arrest. Following that ruling, Plaintiff Richards was falsely arrested once more by a different law enforcement agency.
The underlying problem, Kilmer argued yesterday, is that Harris – the chief law enforcement officer in the State of California – and her Department of Justice have refused to promulgate any rules or guides to law enforcement on how to accurately identify an “assault weapon” since the Third Edition was published in 2001.
While there is no deadline for a decision, the Ninth Circuit usually issues its opinions in six to twelve months after oral arguments take place and the case is submitted.
Haynie v. Harris was filed in 2010.
Help us support this case and other pro-gun litigation by making a tax-deductible donation to the Calguns Foundation:
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UPDATE: 9th Circuit Orders Briefing on Peruta / Richards "Super En Banc" Request for Rehearing

On June 23, 2016, the Richards and Peruta plaintiffs/appellants requested that the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals re-hear their respective cases with a full en banc court rather than the limited en banc panel of eleven judges (ten plus Chief Judge Sidney Thomas) that recently overturned the original three-judge panel decision.
On June 24, 2016, the Chief Judge Sidney Thomas ordered that "Appellees [Yolo County Sheriff Ed Prieto and San Diego County Sheriff William Gore] and Intervenor [California Attorney General Kamala Harris] are directed to file responses to the petitions for full court rehearing en banc filed on June 23, 2016 by Appellants Peruta and Richards. The response to each petition shall not exceed 15 pages or 4,200 words, and shall be filed within twenty-one (21) days of the date of this order. The parties shall the briefs electronically without submission of paper copies."
Richards' request for a full en banc rehearing can be viewed here.
Peruta's request for a full en banc rehearing can be viewed here.
The Court's order can be viewed here.