A federal judge ruled Monday there is no constitutional right to carry a hidden gun in public – a decision that dealt a setback to gun-rights advocates who had challenged how much discretion California law enforcement officials have in issuing concealed weapons permits.
U.S. District Court Judge Morrison England Jr. in Sacramento supported a policy by Yolo County Sheriff Ed Prieto that says applicants must have a reason, such as a safety threat, to legally carry a concealed weapon in his county northwest of Sacramento.
Prieto was sued by opponents claiming sheriffs, who issue most concealed weapons permits, must give the documents to all applicants as long as they are not mentally ill, do not have a criminal background and complete a training course.
England signed the ruling Friday and it was filed in court on Monday.
Gun rights groups have filed similar lawsuits in Maryland, Massachusetts and New York, but Alan Gura of Alexandria, Va., an attorney for the gun groups, said none of the cases has been resolved.
Gura filed a notice Monday saying the groups will appeal Judge England’s decision to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.
Read on at Lake Wylie Pilot