SCOTUS Gun Watch – Week of 4/19/21

  • Date:
  • April 19, 2021

At last Friday’s conference, the Supreme Court considered 5 gun cases—3 challenges to the felon prohibitor, 1 public carry case (for the third time), and 1 challenge to a firearm storage law. It was the most Second Amendment challenges the justices have considered all at once since last summer’s post­NYSRPA denial of all 10 then-pending cases. In today’s order list, the Court denied review in 4 of the 5 and did not act on other. It denied cert for all the felon prohibitor cases and in the firearm storage law, but declined to act again on Corlett, the challenge to New York’s concealed carry licensing law.

I have no special insight, but my best guess is that Corlett is less likely to get plenary review now that it has been relisted so many times. As veteran Court expert John Elwood helpfully explained here, the chances of full review decrease the more times a case gets relisted. It’s possible some justices are writing a per curiam opinion reversing the Second Circuit without oral argument or briefing—which the Court did after relisting Caetano 10 times(!) after the initial conference. But, unlike Caetano, the issues here are complex and nuanced, and it’s not clear where the Court would find the clear, undisputed error it did in Caetano. More likely, in my opinion, is that one or more justices is writing a dissent from the denial of cert. But that too is a little strange. Less than a year ago, the Supreme Court denied cert in (among other cases), Rogers v. Grewal, that raised almost the same constitutional question as Corlett about how these type of good cause laws cohere with the Second Amendment. Justice Thomas, joined partially by Justice Kavanaugh, already dissented from that denial. One wonders what more there is to say.

Petitions Pending

Case Ct. Below Pet. Filed Implicated Law/Issue Status
Fleury v. Massachusetts


App. Ct. Mass. 2-Nov-20 Challenge to Mass. firearm storage law Cert Denied
Holloway v. Barr


3d Cir. 3-Dec-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(1) Cert Denied
Mai v. United States


9th Cir. 9-Dec-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(4) distributed for 23-Apr-2021 conf.
Folajtar v. Barr


3d Cir. 11-Dec-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(1) Cert Denied
New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Corlett


2d Cir. 17-Dec-20 Challenge to New York’s good cause public carry regime distributed for 16-Apr-2021 conf.
Flick v. Rosen


11th Cir. 29-Dec-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(1) Cert Denied
Libertarian Party of Erie County v. Cuomo


2d Cir. 9-Feb-21 Challenge to New York’s pistol permit regime response due


Keahey v. Marquis


6th Cir. 16-Mar-21 Failure to give self-defense instruction response due 11-June-2021 (Court called for response)
Russell v. New Jersey


N.J. Superior Ct. 2-Apr-21 Challenge to New Jersey’s good cause public carry law response due 10-May-2021

Petitions Disposed

Case Ct. Below Pet. Filed Implicated Law/Issue Status
Greer v. United States


11th Cir. 8-Jun-2020 Scope of appellate review for Rehaif errors Cert Granted
Caniglia v. Strom


1st Cir. 10-Aug-20 Fourth Amendment challenge to gun removal Argument held on 24-Mar-2021
Hobbs v. United States


6th Cir. 13-Aug-20 Guilty plea under 922(g) without knowledge of disqualifying status


Likely being held pending Gary
United States v. Gary


4th Cir. 5-Oct-20 Guilty plea under 922(g) without being informed that knowledge is an element of the offense

(Govt is petitioner)

Cert Granted
Rodriguez v. San Jose


9th Cir. 21-Feb-20 Warrantless search and seizure of firearms under Fourth Amendment Cert Denied
Johnson v. United States


4th. Cir. 12-Jun-20 Vagueness challenge to the Armed Career Criminal Act’s elements clause Cert Denied
Zoie H. v Nebraska


Neb. Sup. Ct. 22-June-20


Second and Sixth Amendment challenge to jury-less conviction that can result in gun disqualifer for juveniles Cert Denied
Caldara v. City of Boulder


10th Cir. 24-Sep-20 Federal court abstention over Second Amendment claims being adjudicated in state court Cert Denied
Torres v. United States


9th Cir. 27-Aug-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(1) Cert Denied
E.H. v. Florida Dept. Ag. (Pro se)


Fla. Ct. App. 9-Oct-20 Challenge to firearm license denial based on prior mental health commitment Cert Denied
Porter v. United States


6th Cir. 16-Oct-20 Challenge to ACCA enhancement Cert Denied
McGinnis v. United States


5th Cir. 13-Oct-20 As-applied challenge to 922(g)(8) Cert Denied
Yoo v. United States


5th Cir. 21-Oct-20 Challenge to conviction based on misstatements on Form 4473 (req’d for purchase at a gun dealer) Cert Denied
Knowles v. Hart


11th Cir. 17-Dec-20 Fourth Amendment challenge to use of deadly force against person with holstered weapon Cert Denied