Federal Judge Shuts Down Gun Store Ban In Pennsylvania

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The Second Amendment Foundation and Drummond LLC have successfully secured an injunction demanding the Robinson Township stop using zoning laws to ban a gun store from being built in the town. Drummond LLC, which owns the property and formerly leased it to a shooting range for years about a decade ago, is suing because they believe the zoning laws are infringing on the 2nd and 14th Amendments of the Constitution.

Of course, the Federal Judge who granted the injunction was after other appeals courts ruled in favor with Drummond LLC and the Second Amendment Foundation in the case. The other appeals courts remanded the case over to her.

In her ruling, the Judge stated that the township could not prove they were not trying to suppress gun rights with their zoning laws, and therefore issued the injunction since the issue became a gun rights issue rather than a simple zoning violation.

She wrote in her ruling “Although the courts owe ‘substantial deference’ to local zoning decisions, restrictions on rights guaranteed by the Second Amendment…must still satisfy intermediate scrutiny…At this stage and for purposes of the Motion for Preliminary Injunction, the Township has not provided evidence that the challenged Ordinance provisions…in fact serve the asserted government interests of health, safety, and welfare.”

According to Justia, The 265-acre area in Robinson Township, Pennsylvania, had a rifle range with over 800 members for many years. The Club shuttered for roughly a decade after the range’s then-owner pled guilty to owning guns as a convicted criminal in 2008. Drummond leased the site in 2017 for the retail sale of weapons and the operation of a shooting range. The Township then allowed “Shooting Ranges” in Industrial and Special Conservation zoning districts, as well as “Sportsman’s Clubs” in Interchange Business Districts (IBD).

Residents allegedly worried that the Club’s reintroduction of so-called “high-powered rifles” would be a “nuisance” and a “danger.” The board then changed the rules to include Drummond’s property as a result.

This caused Drummond and the Second Amendment Foundation to sue, since the ban allegedly resulted from residents trying to stop people from their constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

Now, the current judge has ruled there is no evidence to support the township’s ban because the township couldn’t prove they were not trying to suppress gun rights in the township.

Second Amendment Foundation founder and Executive Vice President, Alan M. Gottlieb, said of the injunction, “Gun ranges are a necessary component in the exercise of Second Amendment rights. Even Judge Horan recognized this in her ruling, where she quoted the Supreme Court’s decision in Heller that ‘The right to bear arms implies something more than mere keeping; it implies the learning to handle and use them; . . . it implies the right to meet for voluntary discipline in arms.’ In essence, the township was trying to zone out the Second Amendment.”

“This court victory is important because it shows your Second Amendment rights don’t stop at your front door. It’s essential to our mission of winning firearms freedom one lawsuit at a time,” Gottlieb concluded.

– John S. Paluska, CNJ Staff

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