Philadelphia Abusing Florida Permit Holders

Many thanks to the blog Vox Michaeli for covering this issue, which I didn’t notice on my vacation. The Philadelphia Daily News, to its credit, is covering the civil rights abuses of the City of Philadelphia on holders of Licenses to Carry from the State of Florida, which are legally recognized as valid by Pennsylvania, no matter the residency of the holder. The City confirms it’s handling eight, get that, eight civil rights suits on this issue. How many people have they harassed that haven’t sued:

Despite following the law, all of the men said that they were treated like criminals by city cops who either ignored their rights or didn’t know the laws.

Lt. Fran Healy, special adviser to the police commissioner, acknowledged that some city cops apparently are unfamiliar with some concealed-carry permits. But he said that it’s better for cops to “err on the side of caution.”

It’s time to get them familiar, because what they are doing is illegal, and it opens up the city, and its officers, to expensive civil rights lawsuits. I want the state to do more about this, not reward the city for this behavior by passing Lentz’s law. They need to follow the law. If they won’t follow the law, the state needs to make consequences for refusing to do so. I should note that one of these individuals got a Florida license because he was denied for unpaid parking tickets. That’s not a valid reason. We need to make some changes to the law, but not what Rep. Lentz has in mind.

10 thoughts on “Philadelphia Abusing Florida Permit Holders”

  1. We could give Philadelphia to New Jersey, where it belongs. Problem solved. (Before I get flamed, I’m just kidding.)

  2. “Too hard to keep track of other states’ permits” was one rationale used by Washington State for years to fend off calls to recognize other states’ permits. Among other weaknesses of this argument, you could easily print a guide to “Valid or not” on a business card-sized piece of card stock, for every LEO in the state to carry in his wallet for reference,.

  3. Thanks for the pointer, Sebastian.

    (Before I get flamed, I’m just kidding.)

    No flames from this New Jerseyan. We already have to put up with laws based entirely on Philly’s and NYC’s values–no reason all you good folks in nonpsychotic PA should have to deal with it. ;)

  4. I wrote a letter about this and they published it, but not before they snipped out all of the most important points. What’s worse is that mine was the only response. It seems that nobody cares in this whole city.

  5. Unfortunately (or fortunately) I do not see in the article that a Florida Citizen was abused. Otherwise Florida’s State Attorney could go after Philly with a decent lawsuit.

  6. FoxPhilly had an article the other day about the Florida “loophole”.

    I commented (See John B.)

    I think that it is long past time for Florida (and every other state with reciprocity) to sue the hell out of Philadelphia for refusing to honor these permits. Don’t forget the case of Gerald Ung. He is currently being charged with illegal possession of a firearm even though he had a Virginia permit. Can you sue the DA for charging you with a non-existent crime? I guess it is easier for the Philly PD and DA to prosecute law-abiding citizens rather that real criminals.

  7. Those charges against Ung were dropped. Generally speaking DA’s have absolute immunity from suit when acting in their roles, but there are some circumstances where prosecutors don’t have immunity, and I’m not sure whether something like that would be among them.

  8. I haven’t read that those particular charges were dropped. The fact that Ung was charged for possession and had to spend money to defend himself for a non-crime is outrageous. Seth Williams should have to pay for Ung’s legal bills out of his own pocket.

    I am of the opinion that we should remove qualified immunity from police and prosecutors. They have way too much leeway as it stands especially with regard to gun owners.

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