Citizens Committee, SAF Sue To Halt Destruction Of Critical Gun Records


Jim March
December 31, 2003, 01:26 AM
My comments follow...

SACRAMENTO, CA-The Second Amendment Foundation (SAF) and Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms (CCRKBA) today joined in a lawsuit to prevent the California Department of Justice (DoJ) from destroying critical data that may show many sheriffs and police agencies have practiced blatant discrimination in the way they issue concealed pistol licenses to California citizens.

SAF and CCRKBA filed for a temporary restraining order against Attorney General Bill Lockyer and DoJ Director Randy Rossi and their agencies. The two organizations want to prevent destruction of records under the guidelines of AB 1044, a new law that allows the state to destroy permit applications.

"Normally," said SAF founder Alan Gottlieb, "we would fight to protect the privacy of gun owners, but this is not a normal situation. If those records are destroyed, it could prevent California gun owners from ever finding out whether they have been the victims of ethnic or gender discrimination in their attempts to secure concealed pistol licenses.

"This is an important issue," he added, "because there have already been indications of racial and gender imbalances in the issuance of concealed carry licenses."

CCRKBA Executive Director Joe Waldron said his organization joined in the lawsuit after having opposed the legislation for the very reasons Gottlieb stated.

"California gun rights activists advised us months ago that there appears to be a pattern of discrimination against some permit applicants," Waldron said, "There may be an even larger pattern of entire communities, with high minority populations, having been completely 'red-lined' by local sheriffs for blanket non-issue of permits to anyone living in those communities.

"We're asking for a temporary restraining order to stop implementation of the law," Waldron explained, "while the court has an opportunity to review our request for a permanent order. Ultimately, we would like to see this law overturned in favor of a law protecting the equal rights of all California gun permit applicants, regardless of race or gender."

The lawsuit was filed in the Superior Court of Sacramento County.

With more than 650,000 members and supporters nationwide, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is one of the nation's premier gun rights organizations. As a non-profit organization, the Citizens Committee is dedicated to preserving firearms freedoms through active lobbying of elected officials and facilitating grass-roots organization of gun rights activists in local communities throughout the United States. The Second Amendment Foundation is the nation's oldest and largest tax-exempt education, research, publishing and legal action group focusing on the Constitutional right and heritage to privately own and possess firearms. Founded in 1974, The Foundation has grown to more than 600,000 members and supporters and conducts many programs designed to better inform the public about the consequences of gun control. SAF has previously funded successful firearms-related suits against the cities of Los Angeles; New Haven, CT; and San Francisco on behalf of American gun owners.


Jim here...yes, I'm in this up to my neck :).

There'll be a big series of updates on this on the 2nd day of "next year".

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December 31, 2003, 02:16 AM
YES!! I was hoping for some good news regarding CCWs in this state. Jim, you are a credit to the human race.

Keep us (me!) posted! ;)


December 31, 2003, 03:02 AM
As a fellow Cauleefornya resident, let me say THANK YOU.

Jim March
December 31, 2003, 03:43 AM
Let me get a few points out of the way now.

There's been a lot of controversy over this bill. NRA supported it, supposedly based on "let's get rid of government gun records". I don't buy it, but I'm not going to debate unless necessary.

What this bill does NOT do is destroy records of who has a CCW permit in California. A lot of people have thought that, some NRA figures have strongly implied it, but even with the bill in place the California DOJ has the list of permitholders and so does each local agency.

What the bill DOES let the Cal-DOJ shred is their records of WHY people got permits. That statewide archive is just...invaluable if we're ever going to crack this problem. Some of those "good cause statements" are so goofy it's hilarious...hell, one of 'em hit the Drudge Report!

And that ain't the worst, not by a LONG shot.

The other thing DOJ wants to shred is their lists of who's been denied.

The two issues with that data is that first, abnormally high rates of denial of women and Latinos (as extracted by name analysis) would be the final nail in "discretion's" coffin.

But of more immediate concern to the crooked cops is that the records are seriously incomplete. ILLEGALLY incomplete. People EMail me all the time with the news that they've been denied. Some scan or fax their denial records. When I finally get my hands on the DOJ archives, I'll be able to identify people who've been "denied", but who are MISSING from the DOJ's data. Folks, many sheriffs and police chiefs are taking in people's applications (and money), writing them a "denial letter" AND THROWING THEIR PAPERWORK IN THE NEAREST GARBAGE CAN. People who've been denied but don't appear in the DOJ archives will all have SLAM DUNK lawsuits available and some will have the guts to do it.

With over 300 permitholders, the San Joaquin County sheriff's office says there's no denied permit app records. Ditto Alameda, Contra Costa and a buttload of others. Access to the DOJ "denial archives" will prove massive, widespread violations of "due process" by local agencies in the handling of CCWs and again, seriously threaten the existing discretionary system.

THAT is what DOJ wants to prevent. I would seriously doubt that the "denial records" are of any significant size. I think the denial data for the whole STATE will be less than 2" worth of paper. DOJ wants to trash it to hide evidence, NOT to "eliminate paper clutter" as claimed.

Finally, AB1044 lets Cal-DOJ cook up whatever CCW application form they want, with no public oversight. When public oversight was required by law in the app form creation process (between 1999 and present) they royally screwed it up, doing the app forms in secret (illegally, while consulting with HCI's lobbyist!) and doing the forms in such fashion as to violate a state supreme court decision (CBS vs. Block) mandating opening the "good cause for issuance" data to expose police misconduct and equal protection violations.

Hell no. AB1044 is a cover-up from top to bottom, part of a criminal conspiracy to violate equal protection and due process.

Jim March
January 1, 2004, 11:05 PM
The Sacramento Bee has picked up this story - go here for the continuing saga:


Jim March
January 2, 2004, 04:59 PM
MORE updates on that thread:

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