Friday, March 27, 2009

Massachusetts Courts and 2nd Amendment Incorporation


Massachusetts Trial Court Holds Gun Storage Law Unconstitutional:

After a police officer's 12-year-old son got access to the officer's handgun, the officer was prosecuted for violating Mass. Gen. Laws. ch. 140, § 131L:

It shall be unlawful to store or keep any firearm, rifle or shotgun ... in any place unless such weapon is secured in a locked container or equipped with a tamper-resistant mechanical lock or other safety device, properly engaged so as to render such weapon inoperable by any person other than the owner or other lawfully authorized user. For purposes of this section, such weapon shall not be deemed stored or kept if carried by or under the control of the owner or other lawfully authorized user.

Last month, the court held the statute was unconstitutional (Commonwealth v. Bolduc), and dismissed the prosecution. I only just now managed to get a copy of the opinion, and here's the relevant discussion:

Go read it on your own.


LeftCoastConservative said...

This is the first case I have heard of that cites Heller and declares a state law unconstitutional. I wish there was some more legal commentary available regarding the effect of this on the incorporation question.

Nylarthotep said...

There has been some discussions over at the Volokh conspiracy, but it hasn't been much anywhere else.

Most of what I've caught basically is opinion that there is no reason not to have 2nd Amendment incorporation since so many other of the basic Bill of Rights have found incorporation.

Unfortunately it will take a case actually getting to the SCOTUS for us to tell.