#ABKLaw BLOG by Michael Jaccarino: New York Can Continue Its Enforcement of New Gun Restrictions


A federal appeals court panel said New York can continue enforcing a new state law banning guns from “sensitive” places like parks and theaters while the judges consider a legal challenge.

The temporary stay from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals on Wednesday puts on hold most of a ruling last month from U.S. District Judge Glenn Suddaby.

Suddaby found constitutional issues with multiple portions of the law related to carrying firearms in public places and to licensing requirements. He issued an injunction halting the law. The appeals court overruled him Wednesday.

New York adopted the new gun law this summer after a U.S. Supreme Court ruling invalidated the state’s system for granting permits to carry handguns outside the home. The high court said Americans have the right to carry arms outside of the home and in public.

The new state law expanded who could get a handgun license and added new licensing requirements and created a long list of places where firearms would be banned.

Based on the Supreme Court’s ruling, the government must justify its regulation by demonstrating its consistent with the “Nation’s historical tradition of firearm regulation.” The county judge in Oregon will hear arguments Tuesday on the gun owners’ motion for a preliminary injunction.

Among the new licensing rules Suddaby found constitutionally flawed was a provision requiring applicants to be of “good moral character,” and another that made applicants turn over information about their social media accounts.

New York, historically, has been one of the toughest states to enforce firearm restrictions, as well as the penalties for those caught in possession of a firearm.  New York county prosecutors notoriously forced New York Giant Super Bowl hero Plaxico Burress to serve a year in prison after he was arrested for possession a gun in a Manhattan night club.

In 2013, in an effort to toughen its already tough gun laws, New York created a law enabling police and prosecutors to file lower-level illegal gun possession charges as either a misdemeanor or a felony. Of course, prosecutors almost always charge these cases as felonies, meaning what was recently had been only a misdemeanor, became a Class E felony in New York under N.Y. Penal Law 265.01-b(1).

Penalties for a felony conviction of Criminal Possession of a Firearm include one to four years in prison and a fine of up to $5,000. (The maximum penalties for a misdemeanor are one year in jail and a fine of $1,000.) These days, as violence has risen, gun possession cases have become a priority of prosecutors and judges throughout the city.  Generally, only first-time offenders are the only people fortunate enough to face misdemeanor gun possession charges.  For all others, it is imperative to retain counsel with experience in the issues surrounding these cases, particularly when the recovery of the gun centers around 4th Amendment/search and seizure issues that Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins Partner Barry Kamins specializes in.  Filing a motion to successfully suppress the recovery of the firearm may be the defendant’s only hope at avoiding jail time.  Contact one of the criminal defense attorneys at Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins immediately if you or a loved one is facing serious criminal possession of a firearm charges.  


Source: Newsday


At Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins, our criminal defense lawyers have a wealth of experience in both Federal and State Court, and have defended some of the most high profile cases in the country.  Contact us today if you or someone you know is facing criminal charges of any kind.

Michael Jaccarino, and the criminal defense attorneys at Aidala, Bertuna & Kamins, PC, have decades of experience. 

For more information or more fact-specific discussions, call our office and ask to speak with attorney Michael Jaccarino.


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