SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 3/2/20

  • Date:
  • March 02, 2020

There was some thought after oral argument in NYSRPA that, given the tenor of questioning, a per curiam opinion on mootness would issue not too long after argument. As the case stretches out into the term, there may be some hope yet for the challengers to get a ruling on the merits. At the same time, it’s at least equally likely that a majority will rule on mootness grounds and that the delay is the result of one or more justices writing separate concurring/dissenting opinions addressing the merits. Only time will tell. And it is unlikely we’ll hear more news on the pending petitions until NYSRPA is dealt with (with the exception of non-Second Amendment firearms cases, like Guedes v. ATF below).

The Court today declined to take Guedes, the challenge to the Trump administration’s ban on bump stocks. Justice Gorsuch wrote separately, and only for himself. He argued that Chevron deference should have had no effect on the lower courts’ decisions upholding the ATF’s reinterpretation of what the term “machinegun” covers. As he says of the agency’s changing positions, “[W]hy should courts, charged with the independent and neutral interpretation of the laws Congress has enacted, defer to such bureaucratic pirouetting?” Though he ultimately agreed with the other justices that this case (in its current posture) was not a good vehicle for cert, he noted the other cases percolating in the lower courts and cautioned that “waiting should not be mistaken for lack of concern.”

Case Ct. Below Pet. Filed Implicated Law/Issue Status
Mance v. Barr  5th Cir. 19-Nov-18 Federal ban on out-of-state handgun purchases distributed

12-Apr-19 conf.

Rogers v. Grewal  3rd Cir. 20-Dec-18 NJ “may issue” public carry regime distributed

23-May-19 conf.

Pena v. Horan  9th Cir. 28-Dec-18 California’s Unsafe Handgun Act (microstamping, etc.) distributed

12-Apr-19 conf.

Gould v. Lipson  1st Cir. 1-Apr-19 MA “may issue” public carry regime (as implemented locally) distributed

6-June-19 conf.

Cheeseman v. Polillo N.J. 28-June-19 NJ “may issue” public carry regime distributed

18-Oct-19 conf.

Ciolek v. New Jersey N.J. 18-July-19 NJ “may issue” public carry regime distributed

1-Oct-19 conf.

Daniel v. Armslist Wisc. 29-July-19 Scope of immunity for gun-broker website under Communications Decency Act Cert Denied
Remington Arms v. Soto Conn. 1-Aug-19 Scope of  gunmaker immunity under the Protection for Lawful Commerce in Arms Act Cert Denied
Guedes v. ATF D.C. Cir. 29-Aug-19 Ban on bump stocks Cert Denied
Medina v. Barr D.C. Cir. 30-Aug-19 Ban on felon possession under 922(g)(1) (as applied) Cert Denied
Worman v. Healey 1st Cir. 23-Sep-19 Ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines distributed

10-Jan-20 conf.

Malpasso v. Pallozzi 4th Cir. 26-Sep-19 MD “may issue” public carry regime distributed

24-Jan-20 conf.

Pennsylvania v. Hicks Penn. 27-Sep-19 How a firearm can factor into reasonable suspicion under the Fourth Amendment Cert Denied
Culp v. Raoul 7th Cir. 10-Oct-19 IL refusal to grant carry permits to most non-residents distributed

21-Feb-20 conf.

Matsura v. United States 9th Cir. 25-Oct-19 Unlawful possession of a firearm by a prohibited person Cert Granted; vacated and remanded
Baker v. City of Trenton, MI 6th Cir. 26-Nov-19 Reasonableness of warrantless search in light of the Second Amendment Cert Denied
Wilson v. Cook County, IL 7th Circ. 27-Nov-19 Assault weapons and high-capacity magazine ban distributed for

6-Mar-20 conf.

Beers v. Barr 3rd Cir. 9-Jan-20 Unlawful possession of a firearm by a prohibited person (involuntarily committed) resp. due 11-Mar-20
Rodriguez v. San Jose 9th Cir. 21-Feb-20 Warrantless search and seizure of firearms under Second & Fourth Amendments resp. due 26-Mar-20