The state of New York passed a gun control law allowing law enforcement officers to seize firearms without having a warrant. The Secure Ammunition and Firearms Enforcement Act (nicknamed the SAFE Act), was designed to prevent criminals and those with dangerous mental illnesses from buying guns, according to New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo. However, an amicus brief recently filed by the attorneys general of 22 states claims that the law is unconstitutional based on the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution:
- The brief asks the court to examine the ban of some types of semiautomatic weapons, which are often used for hunting, arguing that the text of the law has failed to demonstrate how it can effectively decrease gun violence or improve public safety.
- In addition, a separate lawsuit filed in U.S. District Court’s New York Eastern District argues that the law’s registry process is likely to result in mandatory and warrantless gun removal visits from police officers across the state.
- The lawsuit also claims Fourth Amendment violations that could foreseeably occur under the Act, and argues that because the New York Department of Criminal Justice is intended to oversee the registry database, the department might prevent a person from owning a weapon without any formal judicial process.
The lawsuit has received support from many pro-Second Amendment groups, who agree that the measure violates numerous constitutional protections.
Some updates to the SAFE Act include:
- Permitting the purchase of magazines that can hold 10 rounds.
- Active police officers are still legally allowed to possess high-capacity magazines, assault weapons, and carry more than 7 rounds within a magazine, and are allowed to carry on school property.
For gun owners in New York, the SAFE Act is likely to place some limits on their right to own firearms. If you believe that your gun rights have been violated in Florida, speak with a knowledgeable Tavares criminal defense lawyer.