District of Columbia
Dick Anthony Heller
Opinion of the Court- Justice Scalia
Vote was 5-4
Dissenters : stevens , breyer
VIOLATION OF 2nd AMENDMENT
-1976, district of columbia passed the most restrictive gun control ordinance. -banned the private possession of handguns.
-shotguns and rifles could be owned but only if weapons were registered, kept unloaded and dissembled or restricted trigger locks. -this law allowed the chief of police to issue a one ear certificate to carry a handgun -Dick Anthony Heller, washington dc security officer had been granted a license to carry a handgun while on duty providing security at the federal judicial center. -Heller applied for permission to own a handgun for self defense but was refused. -Heller said it violated the second amendment (right to bear arms) so he brought the case to the city. -district court dismissed the case, but us court of appeals took the case and said that the 2nd amendment protected hellers right to possess a firearm for self-defense. -ROBERT LEVY sponsored and planned the case himself and also funded the litigation out of his own pocket
DETAILS OF OPINION:
-2nd amendment divided into 2 parts. Prefatory clause and operative clause.
“because a well regulated militia is necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed” -1.operative clause : “right of the people”
-rights of individuals not to be confused with “collective rights” or rights under a corporate body
-right to bear arms “ means right to have and carry weapons”
-right of the people was to individual citizens and not to those only within a militia
-the point of this clause is that “ it guarantees the right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation” Prefatory clause: “a well regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free state”