Attorney General Becerra Petitions Ninth Circuit to Review Flanagan v. Becerra to Protect California’s Gun Safety Public Carry Laws

Friday, September 21, 2018
Contact: (916) 210-6000,

SACRAMENTO – California Attorney General Xavier Becerra today continued his defense of California’s gun safety laws by filing a motion for initial en banc review in Flanagan v. Becerra, a challenge to California’s laws that regulate who may carry a firearm in public places. The petition was filed with the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals in response to the Court's recent decision in Young v. State of Hawai’i. In the Young case, a three-member panel of the Court held that Hawai’i's public carry regulations, as the Court understood them, violate the Second Amendment. If allowed to stand, the decision could erroneously alter the Court's consideration of California's public carry laws and other sensible firearms laws and regulations.  

“California has some of the strongest gun safety laws in the country. We cannot and will not go backwards,” said Attorney General Becerra. “The safety of our communities is at stake. My office will defend the ability of our local authorities to keep firearms out of our public spaces.”

On May 7, 2018, Attorney General Becerra prevailed in the first stage of the Flanagan litigation. The district court rejected a challenge to restrictions imposed by California law and local authorities on carrying firearms in public in Los Angeles County. The challengers appealed that decision to the Ninth Circuit. Before briefing in Flanagan could begin, however, a three-judge panel issued its decision in Young. On September 14, 2018, Hawai’i petitioned for an 11-member en banc panel of the Ninth Circuit to reconsider that decision. 

In today’s filing, Attorney General Becerra supports Hawai’i's petition and asks the Court to grant en banc review of Flanagan at the same time. The joint review would allow the Court to consider how the Second Amendment applies to both California's and Hawai’i's systems for regulating the carrying of firearms in public.   

A copy of the filing is available here.

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