A group of gun owners filed a lawsuit in Los Angeles this week challenging state and county restrictions on carrying firearms for self-defense in public.
The lawsuit is supported by the National Rifle Association and names California Attorney General Kamala Harris and Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell as defendants because, the plaintiffs claim, their policies prohibit residents from exercising their Second Amendment right to bear arms.
According to the complaint, lodged in federal court on behalf of four county residents and the California Rifle and Pistol Association, “the Supreme Court has made clear that the right to bear arms cannot be completely foreclosed.”
The plaintiffs contend that because California law stops law-abiding citizens from openly carrying a firearm, they are “completely barred from exercising their right to bear arms—in any manner.”
The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals decided in June that county sheriffs may require applicants to show specific reasons, such a direct threat, to obtain a permit for a concealed gun. But the court on Monday rejected a request to reconsider that ruling.
Los Angeles and other large urban counties usually deny such permits, requiring residents to show “convincing evidence of a clear and present danger” to obtain a permit to carry a concealed gun, the lawsuit states.