Today, I obtained a copy of a letter that Lancaster County District Attorney Craig Stedman issued regarding unlawful ordinances in violation of Pennsylvania’s preemption statute, which was sent to all the police departments in Lancaster County, as a result of my recent success in Firearm Owners Against Crime (FOAC) v. Lower Merion Township.
As our viewers are aware, 18 Pa.C.S. § 6120 provides, inter alia,
No county, municipality or township may in any manner regulate the lawful ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms, ammunition or ammunition components when carried or transported for purposes not prohibited by the laws of this Commonwealth.
The case law, including from the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, has been “crystal clear” than only the General Assembly can regulate firearms and ammunition, as the entire field is preempted. See, Nat’l Rifle Ass’n v. City of Philadelphia, 977 A.2d 78, 82 (Pa. Cmwlth. 2009). In FOAC v. Lower Merion Township, the Commonwealth Court held that, inter alia, the township’s discharge ordinance was unlawful due to state preemption. See, FOAC v. Lower Merion Township, 151 A.3d 1172 (Pa. Cmwlth. Ct. 2016) (petition for allocatur denied July 11, 2017 ).
As a result, District Attorney Stedman issued a letter to all Lancaster County police departments reminding them than any local ordinances regulating firearms and ammunition are unlawful. Specifically, he unequivocally stated:
The Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court held, appropriately, that any such county, municipal, or township ordinance designed to regulate firearms is specifically preempted by the Pennsylvania Constitution and 18 § 6120 of the Uniform Firearms Act. (emphasis added)
the Pennsylvania Supreme Court has clearly denied all municipalities the power to regulate firearms and the Uniform Firearms Act prohibits a township from regulation concerning the ownership, possession, transfer or transportation of firearms or ammunition “in any manner”, to include ordinances on parks. (emphasis added).
Because of District Attorney Stedman’s prior commitment and dedication to the Second Amendment and Article 1, Section 21, I previously endorsed him for Judge of the Superior Court and this letter has only solidified in my mind that my prior endorsement was proper.
As such, I am respectfully asking that you vote for him in November to ensure that our inalienable rights are protected.
To learn more about Craig Stedman for Superior Court, check out his website and Facebook page. Obviously, if you are in a financial position to be able to donate to his campaign, I am sure he would greatly appreciate support!
If your rights have been violated by an illegal firearm or ammunition ordinance or regulation promulgated by a state agency, county, municipality or township, contact Firearms Industry Consulting Group today to discuss YOUR rights and legal options.
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.