A special federal appeals panel in San Francisco will rehear arguments in a long-running court battle that could dramatically loosen restrictions on carrying concealed firearms in California.
At issue Tuesday afternoon before an 11-judge en banc panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals are requirements by sheriffs in two counties that people applying for a permit to carry a concealed weapon in public show "good cause" beyond self-defense. Lawsuits against the San Diego and Yolo County sheriffs said that policy violated the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms.
"Had plaintiffs sought carry licenses in most states in this country - or even most counties in California - they would have gotten them because most jurisdictions do not require law-abiding, competent adults to provide documentary evidence that they have a unique need for a license to exercise their fundamental right to bear arms," attorneys for the plaintiffs in the San Diego case wrote in a court filing.
A smaller 9th Circuit panel agreed in a 2-1 decision issued last year, saying requiring applicants to show they were in immediate danger or otherwise had a "good cause" for a permit was too restrictive.