Could be a big day for gun rights in the Land of Lincoln:
â€œWe have a very strong case,â€ Todd Vandermyde, a NRA lobbyist, said. â€œWhen you look at some of the briefs that have been filed by the state and attorney general and some of the arguments they are trying to make, I think it is clear they are very, very nervous.â€
Vandermyde specifically pointed to an argument made Madiganâ€™s office that since the state doesnâ€™t outlaw openly carrying a loaded gun outside of cities, towns and other incorporated parts of counties, there is not full scale prohibition.
Madigan’s argument would appear to be very weak here, as I don’t think it’s ever been considered that Illinois law allows carry outside the home under any circumstances. Even if it did, it seems odd to argue there’s a right to carry outside of cities and towns, but no concurrent right to carry in them. What other constitutional right is interpreted to work that way?
4 thoughts on “Illinois Carry Case Being Heard Today”
Given the way the court reacted to the exact same argument regarding Chicago’s prohibition on shooting ranges I’d say they’re in deep trouble.
I spent the day with Jon Maier, one of the listed plaintiffs. We were working with the newly created 4-h shooting sports program in Illinois. Jon is a great guy and was a perfect addition to this suit. I’m cautiously optimistic…
A very reasonable article. Gave only token coverage to the opposition, and pointed out the hypocrisy of the Chicago range ban.
The full explanation of why Vandermyde “pointed to that argument” didn’t make it into the article, I imagine.
Everything Sebastian says about the argument is right, but more than that, Madigan’s office is flat wrong on a factual basis. It’s an internet urban legend that Illinois law doesn’t prohibit carry in unincorporated areas, and rather than check the statutes, Madigan’s people bought into it and threw it out there to defend the current statutes . . . . I’m sure it was unintentional, but they did resort to a falsehood to try to defend Illinois law, and as Sebastian points out, it wasn’t even a very strong falsehood. If it were true, it still wouldn’t help them much . . . . . but it’s not true.
The statute Madigan’s office checked was probably the Unlawful Use of Weapons ()
(10) Carries or possesses on or about his person, upon any public street, alley, or other public lands within the corporate limits of a city, village or incorporated town, except when an invitee thereon or therein, for the purpose of the display of such weapon or the lawful commerce in weapons, or except when on his land or in his own abode or fixed place of business, any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm, except that this subsection (a) (10) does not apply to or affect transportation of weapons that meet one of the following conditions:
(i) are broken down in a non?functioning state; or
(ii) are not immediately accessible; or
(iii) are unloaded and enclosed in a case, firearm carrying box, shipping box, or other container by a person who has been issued a currently valid Firearm Owner’s Identification Card.
That bolded portion makes people think you can’t be convicted of Unlawful Use of a Weapon if you were in an unincorporated area. However, Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon is defined in its own separate statute, and it’s missing a bunch of those qualifiers:
(a) A person commits the offense of aggravated unlawful use of a weapon when he or she knowingly:
(1) Carries on or about his or her person or in any vehicle or concealed on or about his or her person except when on his or her land or in his or her abode or fixed place of business any pistol, revolver, stun gun or taser or other firearm; or . . .
See what’s missing there? if you’re arrested for UUW in an unincorporated area, as I read it, all a prosecutor has to do is drop the UUW charge and bring an Aggravated UUW charge. Maybe you could argue to the judge that the statute can’t be applied that way, since it boggles common sense that you could be charged with an aggravated crime but not for the simple crime itself . . . . .but I wouldn’t count on it.
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