Gun group sues NYC, Dermot Shea to loosen permit rules after SCOTUS ruling

A pro-gun group asked a federal judge Wednesday to order the NYPD to loosen rules on concealed firearms after last week’s Supreme Court decision striking down a state law that required citizens to demonstrate “proper cause” for carrying weapons.

The Firearms Policy Coalition, which filed a motion on behalf of two men denied permit renewals, has outstanding lawsuits in New York, New Jersey and Maryland challenging laws restricting concealed weapons.

If the judge grants the group’s request, the five boroughs could soon adopt new rules allowing people to get permits to pack heat as long as they meet objective criteria, such as being at least 21 years old with no felony convictions.

“They’re saying that the Supreme Court just found against the state’s capricious process for permit issuance … This is simply them taking the city [to court] to make sure that the city is moving to change their processes,” Warren Eller, associate professor of public management at the John Jay College of Criminal Justice in Manhattan, told the Post Wednesday.

Dermot Shea
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea is named in a lawsuit by a gun-rights group seeking to get the NYPD to loosen its rules on concealed firearms.
Stephen Yang
Supreme Court
Last week the Supreme Court voted to overturn New York’s law requiring citizens to demonstrate “proper cause” to carry guns.
Getty Images

Eller added that if the motion gets rejected, the NYPD could drag its feet to change its permit application policies following the landmark Supreme Court decision in New York Rifle and Pistol Association v. Bruen.

City rules on concealed weapons have been stricter than those in other areas of the state like Rensselaer County, where two men denied permits sued New York State Police Superintendent Kevin Bruen in federal court.

That effort eventually reached the high court, which struck down the century-old Sullivan Act.

“”[B]ut for Defendants’ use of the unconstitutional ‘proper cause’ standard, each Plaintiff would have a valid license to carry handguns in New York City right now,” reads the lawsuit, which names the city and NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea.

“[U]nder Bruen, the laws and rules at issue are plainly unconstitutional.”

The Firearms Policy Coalition told The Post in an email late Wednesday that it expects a ruling by the end of this year, though it added: “It’s still very possible that the City will try to settle the case before then.”

The NYPD did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

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