New York’s Gun Law Gets Reprieve From Federal Appeals Court

FILE – John Deloca, owner of Seneca Sporting Range, prepares to fire his 9mm semi-automatic handgun during a shooting demonstration at his gun range. (AP Photo/Bebeto Matthews, File)

NEW YORK (AP/Hamodia) — A federal appeals court on Wednesday allowed New York to continue enforcing its new gun law as it considers a lower court ruling that would block key provisions.

The decision from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals came six days after a federal district judge in Syracuse declared multiple portions of the law unconstitutional and placed a temporary hold on them.

The state promptly appealed the order. The decision puts a hold on U.S. District Judge Glenn Suddaby’s order until a three-judge appeals panel can make a decision on the state’s motion.

Suddaby on Thursday put a hold on several of the state’s new licensing rules for carrying handguns in public, including one that made applicants turn over information about their social-media accounts.

The judge also chipped away at the list of “sensitive” locations where people cannot carry guns. He said the state couldn’t ban people from carrying guns in New York City’s subway system or Times Square.

Attorney General Letitia James said she was pleased the law would stay in effect.

“My office will continue our efforts to protect the safety of everyday New Yorkers and defend our common-sense gun laws,” she said in a prepared release.

George Mocsary, a gun-rights advocate, and a Second Amendment professor at University of Wyoming College of Law, told Hamodia the ruling is “what’s to be expected from the Second Circuit when it comes to rights that it doesn’t like, even in the face of constitutional violations as extreme as those enacted by New York. That’s why other U.S. Courts of Appeals take Second Circuit precedents with a grain of salt, if they take them seriously at all.”

Gov. Kathy Hochul and lawmakers rewrote the state’s handgun laws this summer after a Supreme Court ruling invalidated New York’s old system for granting permits to carry handguns outside the home. The high court struck down the state’s longstanding requirement that people demonstrate an unusual threat to their safety to qualify for such a license.

Once the Supreme Court struck down the restrictions on who could carry guns, the state instead enacted this long list of restrictions on where guns could be carried.

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