Federal appeals courts rule people do not have constitutional right to carry concealed weapons

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) — People do not have a constitutional right to carry concealed weapons in public, a federal appeals courts ruled Thursday in a case brought by a part-time San Diego resident and other gun owners.

An 11-judge panel of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals took up the case after state Attorney General Kamala Harris appealed a ruling by a smaller 9th Circuit panel that struck down a policy by the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department. The department had required applicants to show "good cause” why they needed a concealed weapons permit.

Harris issued a statement on today’s 9th Circuit decision:

"The devastating impact gun violence has on our communities underscores the need for common sense gun safety laws,” Harris said. "The court’s decision is a victory for public safety and sensible gun safety laws. The ruling ensures that local law enforcement leaders have the tools they need to protect public safety by determining who can carry loaded, concealed weapons in our communities.”

In its ruling, the 11-judge appeals panel said California counties may require people seeking permits for concealed guns to state specific reasons why they need the weapons.

"We hold that the Second Amendment does not preserve or protect a right of a member of the general public to carry concealed firearms in public,” according to the opinion.

The case stems from a 2009 lawsuit filed by Edward Peruta and other gun owners who were denied concealed-carry permits.

Categories: Local San Diego News