Today, in a case that will have a major impact on firearm rights in the Commonwealth, Joshua Prince, Esq., Chief Counsel of the Firearms Industry Consulting Group® (“FICG®”), a division of Civil Rights Defense Firm, P.C., filed an amici curiae brief (or friends of the court brief) before the Pennsylvania Supreme Court on behalf of numerous members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, Firearm Owners Against Crime (“FOAC”), Firearms Policy Coalition (“FPC”) and Firearms Policy Foundation (“FPF”) in support of Mr. Michael Hicks in the matter of Commonwealth v. Hicks, 56 MAP 2017. You can find a copy of the Amici Curiae brief here.
In this case, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court will be deciding whether the mere open or concealed carrying of a firearm – in the absence of any criminal conduct – is sufficient to establish reasonable suspicion of criminal conduct. Simply put, the PA Supreme Court intends to decide whether law-abiding citizens can be harassed and interrogated by police for merely open or conceal carrying a firearm.
In the event the Court finds that the mere open or concealed carrying of a firearm is sufficient to establish reasonable suspicion of a crime, all conduct, which can be lawful or unlawful, would be sufficient to establish reasonable suspicion – i.e. Pandora’s box would be opened. For example, police would have reasonable suspicion to stop a boy merely walking down the street with a baseball bat, because that baseball bat could be used for either a lawful or unlawful purpose. Even more abhorrent, the police would have reasonable suspicion to stop someone walking down the street with a wallet, because that wallet may have counterfeit bills within it. Maybe the best example is that the police would have reasonable suspicion to stop EVERY motorist, because the motorist may not have a driver’s license, proof of insurance or proof of inspection. We simply cannot permit this ongoing erosion of our inalienable rights.
It is for these reasons and their steadfast devotion to the Second Amendment and Article 1, Section 21 that a number of members of the General Assembly, Firearms Owners Against Crime, Firearms Policy Coalition and Firearms Policy Foundation decided that it was imperative that an amici curiae brief be filed.
Unfortunately, the cost to prepare this brief was monumental, since it required review of all relevant state and federal court decisions across the United States; thus, if you are in a position to be able to support the preparation of this brief, Civil Rights Defense Firm, P.C. would greatly appreciate donations, which can be made online through the Firm’s escrow account here – https://secure.lawpay.com/pages/civilrightsdefensefirm/trust. Simply place Hicks Appeal in the reference box.
Firearms Industry Consulting Group® (FICG®) is a registered trademark and division of Civil Rights Defense Firm, P.C., with rights and permissions granted to Prince Law Offices, P.C. to use in this article.