The Second Amendment Foundation filed a federal lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the state’s restrictive gun laws, alleging in a 28-page complaint that “New Jersey laws…unconstitutionally restrict the acquisition of firearms.”
SAF is joined by the Association of New Jersey Rifle & Pistol Clubs, Inc., the New Jersey Second Amendment Society, the Coalition of New Jersey Firearms Owners, the Firearms Policy Coalition, Bob’s Little Sport Shop, Inc., and three private citizens. They are represented by attorneys David H. Thompson, Peter A. Patterson and Joseph O. Masterman at Cooper & Kirk, PLLC in Washington, D.C., Daniel L. Schmutter at Hartman & Winnicki, P.C. in Ridgewood, N.J. and David D. Jensen at David Jensen & Associates, Beacon, N.Y.
The lawsuit is known as Kendrick v. Grewal.
Named as defendants in the complaint, which was filed in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey, are New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir S. Grewal, State Police Supt. Patrick J. Callahan, Bridgeton Police Chief Michael Giamari, Harrison Township Police Chief Ronald A. Cundey and Glassboro Police Chief John Polillo, in their official capacities.
“This legal action has been a long time coming, ever since Carol Bowne of Berlin Township was murdered in her own driveway in 2015 while waiting for her firearm permit to be processed,” said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “The hoops one must go through and waits one must endure, plus the fees attached has resulted in a complicated process that delays approval far beyond what existing state law allows.
“As we note in our lawsuit,” he continued, “such restrictions on firearm acquisition are unconstitutional on their face. No Garden State resident should be subjected to this kind of bureaucratic harassment. The idea that a law-abiding citizen must first obtain government permission before exercising a constitutionally-enumerated fundamental right is simply hostile to the right to keep and bear arms.”
SAF and its partners are asking the court to declare the provisions of current New Jersey statutes requiring citizens to obtain an identification card or permit in order to acquire a firearm are unconstitutional. They want an injunction prohibiting the defendants from enforcing those provisions and any related laws or regulations.