Heller Foundation gets settlement from DC

Gerald Herbert

Ghost guns are everywhere! The latest assaults on the civil liberties have yet to fully manifest from the Biden-Harris administration, but we know that the matter of homebuilt firearms are in the crosshairs of the anti-freedom caucus. Regardless to what the Feds have in store for us, people are dealing with local level infringements. Back in November I reported on Dick Heller suing the District of Columbia, again. And getting a win, again. What was the suit about? Homemade firearms and so-called ghost guns. The lawsuit against the District did yield the result of some temporary and emergency rule changes to the laws, however nothing final has been implemented to date. Also wrapped up in the suit was DC seeking to settle with Heller in the form of monetary damages for his rights being usurped. A recent announcement talked about some of that settlement being fulfilled.

The Heller Foundation formally announces a settlement with the city of Washington, DC in his Second Amendment challenge of their infringement on citizens’ Firearms Freedom Civil Rights. Consequently, there was a small financial award to the foundation and the retraction of the unlawful restrictions.

The case was initially filed by George Lyon, Esq. and plaintiffs Dick Heller, Elby Godwin, and others, were told they could neither construct nor own any partial-polymer firearm kits, the so-called Ghost Guns, within the DC city limits. Heller’s gun kit was forcibly returned-shipped to the retailer, Stephen Bozich, President of Bare Arms in Robbins, North Carolina.

The regulations would have also outlawed all police firearms and made individuals’ possession of Glocks illegal. In a Free Country, paid for with the Blood of Patriots, citizens may construct a boat, airplane, or bow & arrow, or a firearm. However, even though residents of DC may purchase or own most types of firearms, they were not allowed, themselves, to construct a firearm within the city limits for private use in the defense of self or one’s household, or any other lawful purpose.

More legal challenges to government’s overzealous and whimsical overreaching Infringements on our Second Amendment Rights are underway. Typical court challenges to these radical state infringements usually start in the $100,000 range. Patriots can support HellerGunCase.org (aka HellerFoundation.org). Losing these cases means we must prepare for the slow erosion of our Second Amendment Rights and for government confiscation of our guns.

I had a chance to catch up with  George L. Lyon, Jr. from Arsenal Attorneys, Heller’s attorney, and talked with him about the settlement. As part of the agreement, the District agreed to pay out to Heller five thousand dollars for the usurpation of his rights. While this is a big step towards having the lawsuit dropped, the settlement has yet to be fully executed. The District still owes about $81,000.00 in attorney and legal fees. Lyon had the following statements to add:

Mr. Heller ordered a Polymer 80 kit and had the kit sent to one of the District’s FFLs in anticipation of registering it. The FFL in turn inquired of the Metropolitan Police Department as to how to handle the matter and was told that the kit was illegal and to send it back to the vendor.

In response, Mr. Heller sued in Federal District Court for the violation of his constitutional rights. Two other District residents who own polymer frame handguns sued as well in light that the District law appeared to criminalize their possession of their legally acquired and registered polymer framed pistols.

In response, the District, concluding that the law was indefensible, enacted temporary legislation to address the plaintiff’s claims. Among the changes the District made to its law was a provision allowing District residents to make their own firearms subject to registration and placing a serial number on the self-made firearm. In addition, the District repealed the ban on unfinished receivers, and amended its definition of “undetectable” firearm to avoid criminalizing the possession of polymer frame receivers.

As compensation for the denial of Mr. Heller’s civil rights, without admitting liability, the District paid the Heller Foundation $5,000.

While the attorney and legal fees have yet to be paid out, Lyon is confident there will be full financial amelioration. I asked Lyon “What’s next?” He did not give me specifics but did note that he and his firm plan on continuing to go after all unconstitutional laws in the District of Columbia, adding that if someone from DC is interested in being a plaintiff, to reach out to the firm as well as keep their eyes peeled for any upcoming suits.

Anytime there’s an opportunity to bring forward news about Heller and these patriots is welcomed. The work that’s getting done in the District of Colombia has a huge impact on the rest of the country, as indicated by the original Heller case. DC is a great petri dish of progressive and unconstitutional laws which are ripe for challenge and poised to be overturned by the judicial system. We’ll be following the progress of this settlement as well as any other cases brought forward by Heller and his representation Lyon.

Jun 27, 2022 11:30 AM ET