Comm2A files Amicus in Important Safe Storage Case

Comm2A

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For Immediate Release: 9/26/2012

NATICK, MA – Commonwealth Second Amendment, Inc. (Comm2A) has filed an amicus brief in the Massachusetts SJC in a criminal case where the defendant was convicted of both a safe storage violation (§131L) and a violation of the transportation statute (§131C(a)) for a gun found in the glove box of his locked car. This case is of great importance to law abiding gun owners in this state because the Commonwealth seeks to justify these convictions based on not only an erroneous reading of MA law as written, but an unconstitutional reading as well. If this conviction is allowed to stand, not only will gun owners be facing even more onerous deprivation of their liberty, they will have no idea what requirements prosecutors will make up next in order to gain a conviction.

The Commonwealth argues on appeal that since the gun was found in the glove box, it must have been there when the defendant was traveling to work in violation of the transportation statute because the gun was outside his direct control. Besides not offering any evidence that the gun was there when the defendant traveled to work despite the defendant testifying that it was on his waist when he travelled to work, the Commonwealths interpretation of under direct control means that woman who carry in purses are violating the transportation statute even if they have no one else in their car. With regards to storage, the law clearly states that the purpose is to prevent accidents (no mention of deterring the criminal actions of adults) but yet a locked automobile is not sufficient to prevent a child from stumbling upon a firearm. In order to get access to the gun, a subject would have to break the glass of the automobile. Better yet, the Commonwealth argues that the trunk is sufficient. But the problem is, the trunk is accessible to anyone who breaks the glass because of the very common trunk release mechanism found on most cars.

Although the US Supreme Court noted in Heller that safe storage laws meant to prevent tragic accidents are not unconstitutional, the Commonwealth argues that even when safety is not in question, they can hold firearms owners to requirements not expressly in the law and the requirements they offer up are not only arbitrary, but which are unconstitutional in their breadth and scope. For these reasons Comm2A felt it was imperative to file an amicus in the case.

The brief can be found here and the SJC docket can be found here.
 

jasons

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Where is the "Like!" button?

The amicus brief is a great read that accurately and logically lists the issues. It will be hard even for one of our moonbat judges to ignore it.
 

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Where is the "Like!" button?

The amicus brief is a great read that accurately and logically lists the issues. It will be hard even for one of our moonbat judges to ignore it.

Lets hope. And also, for folks who read Section I, realize the supreme court has already stated that a CT style safe storage law is OK. What they didn't say is OK is what we have in MA as it is applied. It is our hope we can scope §131L down to what CT has which only applies when children are in the home.

Also, one last thing. Check out this dog here http://www.ma-appellatecourts.org/search_number.php?dno=sjc-11076. This is going to screw us and make it harder to get the law down to where it needs to be. We did not file an amicus here because we didn't know about the case and frankly the woman sounds disturbed. It would not have made a great case.
 

jasons

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As I've said before, sometimes we are our own worst enemies. This guy's lawyer is a moron if he thinks that won't be (and hasn't been) used against us.

Has someone reached out to this guy to try to make him see the light?
 

jar

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Nice job Comm2A. Good to see another lawyer working for you guys. With the sheer number of laws that need to get fixed, it'll be good to have all of this attorney bandwidth when the fee awards start rolling in.
 

TayNinh_66

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Well written brief. I keep everything in the trunk, and there is a trunk release button on the door. The glove box has a separate lock, thus making it twice as secure. At least on my vehicle.
 
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I'm very optimistic about this case just because the conviction is full of fail on procedural grounds alone (although my optimism has often been misplaced).

I do A LOT of basic firearm safety instruction and some of the most common questions I get (and don't have good answers for) are:
+What does "direct control" mean?
+What qualifies as a "secure container"?
+What can I use for a "locked case"?

If this conviction stands as is, the answer to all these questions will be: "Whatever a prosecutor wants it to be" and any of us could be next.
 

M1911

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I think you underestimate the depths to which a moonbat will stoop.

This.

- - - Updated - - -

I do A LOT of basic firearm safety instruction and some of the most common questions I get (and don't have good answers for) are:
+What does "direct control" mean?
+What qualifies as a "secure container"?
+What can I use for a "locked case"?

If this conviction stands as is, the answer to all these questions will be: "Whatever a prosecutor wants it to be" and any of us could be next.

Which is just how they want it.
 

cekim

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Well written brief. I keep everything in the trunk, and there is a trunk release button on the door. The glove box has a separate lock, thus making it twice as secure. At least on my vehicle.
The illusion of security there is part of the problem.

Unfortunately, the speed with which a trunk break-in can be done is roughly the same as popping a window.

I know this because I am the proud owner of a care violated in both ways in separate incidents many years ago...
 

jasons

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Given some of the other rulings from the Supreme Judicial Court, I don't share your optimism.

The SJC is not the end-all be-all. Besides, they went the right way on Fletcher v. Haas so there is some hope. Granted Hightower has been disappointing, but it's not over yet.
 
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jasons

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The illusion of security there is part of the problem.

This. As the amicus brief highlighted, the obvious intent of the laws is not to provide security against theft but rather to dissuade unauthorized use.
 
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This.

- - - Updated - - -



Which is just how they want it.
And that would leave the defendant here with additional options......

The SJC is not the end-all be-all. Besides, the went the right way on Fletcher v. Haas so there is some hope. Granted Hightower has been disappointing, but it's not over yet.
The SJC was not involved in anyway with either Fletcher or Hightower. Both were federal cases.
 

jasons

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Wasn't Fletcher v. Haas in federal court?

Hmm, yeah you're right. Oops.

Still, Reyes is a pretty sympathetic defendant and it's hard to overlook the screwing that he got in court or the clear logic in the amicus brief. I'm optimistic on this one.
 
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[rockon]



Incoming donation. Hightower was tough from the get-go, this seems solid, kick them in the face with it.
 
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