FedSoc Blog

Ninth Circuit Rules Lifetime Gun Ban Constitutional in Spousal Abuse Cases


by Publius
Posted November 20, 2013, 6:20 PM

Pamela A. MacLean reports at Trial Insider blog:

A federal appeals court upheld the constitutionality of a lifetime ban on gun possession for anyone convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence.

The 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals held Monday that a person convicted of domestic violence is disqualified from the core right of Second Amendment to possess firearms for defense of the home.

The only two exceptions are: if the conviction is expunged or set aside and if the offender is pardoned and has his or her civil rights restored.

Daniel E. Chovan, of San Diego, challenged the law as unconstitutional violation of the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

The U.S. Supreme Court decision recognizing a personal right to possess handguns found the core of the Second Amendment right “is to allow ‘law-abiding, responsible citizens to use arms in defense of hearth and home,’” the opinion states.

Chovan didn’t meet that requirement.

“Keeping guns from domestic violence misdemeanants is substantially related to the broader interest of preventing domestic gun violence,” wrote Judge Harry Pregerson.  Because the gun ban “is supported by an important government interest and substantially related to that interest, the statute passes constitutional muster…” he said.

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