BELLEVUE, WA – Attorneys representing the Second Amendment Foundation and its partners in a lawsuit challenging New York State’s so-called “Anti-Carry Default” law have filed an appeals court brief in the case with the U.S. Second Circuit Court of Appeals, responding to the state’s appeal of its lower court loss. The case is known as Christian v. Nigrelli.
Joining SAF are the Firearms Policy Coalition and a private citizen, Brett Christian, for whom the case is named. They are represented by attorneys Nicolas J. Rotsko at Phillips Lytle LLP in Buffalo and David H. Thompson, Peter A. Patterson and John W. Tienken at Cooper & Kirk LLC in Washington, D.C. Defendants are New York State Police Supt. Steven A. Nigrelli, and Erie County District Attorney John L. Flynn, in their official capacities.
In their brief, plaintiffs note how Christian was able to legally carry his sidearm for personal protection prior to Sept. 1, 2022, the effective date of New York’s new gun control law. The law was hastily passed in reaction to the Supreme Court’s 6-3 ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, which nullified the state’s previous law requiring “proper cause” in order to obtain a concealed carry permit. The new law attempts to circumvent the high court’s Bruin doctrine regarding Second Amendment cases.
“Anti-carry Default” is the result; a general prohibition on carry in so-called “restricted locations.” Under the new law, all private property in the State is “a restricted location” where public carry of firearms for self-defense is unlawful—unless “the owner or lessee of such property” has “permitted” “possession by clear and conspicuous signage indicating that the carrying of firearms, rifles, or shotguns on their property is permitted or has otherwise given express consent.”
“This restriction is absurd,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Brett Christian’s dilemma exemplifies the problem, and very real threat of prosecution, all of our New York State members now face under this new law. Christian and others like him can’t even legally carry at a gas station or hardware store.”
“After the court granted our request for a preliminary injunction,” noted SAF Executive Director Adam Kraut, “the state appealed. However, as we note in our brief, the state has failed to demonstrate any historical justification for this restriction. We maintain that since the Anti-Carry Default is likely unconstitutional, the Court should affirm the preliminary injunction.”