By now, anyone who is shocked by the anti-gun actions of a California politician either hasn’t been following the anti-Second Amendment politics of the state for very long or has deluded themselves. It’s not pleasant for gun owners in the least.
However, a new law apparently is going to make it even less pleasant going forward and the Firearms Policy Coalition is trying to do something about it.
On the last day of the State of California’s 2017 legislative year, civil rights advocacy organization Firearms Policy Coalition (FPC) is once more calling for an immediate repeal of dangerously unconstitutional laws passed by the California Legislature in Assembly Bill 103 (AB 103), an “urgency” public safety omnibus bill that took effect immediately after it was signed into law on June 27.
AB 103 changed California Penal Code sections 29805 to say that even someone who “has an outstanding warrant for” an alleged violation of other codes and who “owns, purchases, receives, or has in possession or under custody or control, any firearm” is guilty of a crime that is “punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or in the state prison, by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine.”
“AB 103 created a serious new, and potentially felony crime for merely being accused of committing some crime and having a gun,” explained FPC’s California lobbyist and spokesperson, Craig DeLuz. “These are the kind of laws that books about dystopian futures are inspired by.”
“I was taught in school that, in America, people are innocent until proven guilty,” DeLuz continued. “Apparently, the California Legislature thinks that all gun owners are guilty of a crime in all cases and must be punished, period. But my copy of the Constitution doesn’t have any ‘gun owner’ exception to fundamental, individual rights like due process and the right to keep and bear arms.”
After communicating their concerns several times, it certainly looks to me like California politicians just don’t give a flip.
Just to be clear here, what this looks like from a non-legal mind is that if you are charged with a crime, regardless of how flimsy the evidence, and you have access to your guns in any way, shape, or form, then you’re going to be guilty of an additional charge. For example, if an ex-girlfriend decides to claim that the bruise on her face is from you punching her, and the police decide to charge you, you’re guilty of an additional crime that you may not even realize you’re guilty of until it’s too late.
This is a terrifying concept, and one that I’d like to believe wouldn’t withstand legal scrutiny, but I’m not sure anyone is particularly eager to be the test case on this.
The FPC wants anyone who is arrested and charged with this draconian nonsense to reach out and contact them.
FPC is also encouraging anyone affected by these unconstitutional laws, and attorneys representing clients affected by the laws, to contact them for potential legal or other support by email at engage[at]fpchq.org or by calling (855) 372-7522.
I highly recommend California gun owners keep this information in the cell phones and wallets, just in case it’s needed. After all, people get charged for things they didn’t commit far too often for anyone to be particularly comfortable with this. That’s why it’s surprising that people actually voted for this law.
In the meantime, California readers, please keep your heads down.