The Connecticut State Police through the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection have been sending threatening and misleading letters to Connecticut residents telling them that they must turn in their firearms to the State Police without any lawful justification.
In one such example, a resident was the subject of an ex parte restraining order. State law clearly states that such an individual is only ineligible to possess firearms when:
a restraining or protective order of a court of this state that has been issued against such person, after notice and an opportunity to be heard has been provided to such person, … -- 53a-217(a)(3) and 53a-217c(a)5
Federal law provides that a person is ineligible to possess firearms when they are:
subject to a court order that (A) was issued after a hearing of which such person received actual notice, and at which time such person had an opportunity to participate … -- 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(8)
Instead of following the law and waiting until the resident had been given notice and an opportunity to be heard as the law prescribes; the State Police sent a letter threatening arrest if the resident did not turn over all of their firearms. The restraining order ended up being dissolved before the resident became ineligible to possess firearms, but because of the 2013 gun ban that went into effect 4/4/2013, some of the firearms and magazines this person possessed can never be transferred back to them.
Because of the Connecticut State Police and DESPP not knowing or following the law, a resident of Connecticut may have permanently lost property that rightfully belongs to him and should have never been in the possession of the State Police to begin with. This is yet another case involving the seizure of firearms where members of the State Police, DESPP and the Special License and Firearms Unit (SLFU) have been found doing business their way rather than following the law.
Attorney Rachel Baird is the attorney investigating this particular instance as well as several other questionable practices and misunderstandings of existing laws. She went on to address these in a recent letter to Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection (DESPP) Commissioner Reuben Bradford.
Cases like this demonstrate the fact that experienced members of law enforcement who are assigned to firearm related cases on a daily basis lack the required understanding of firearm laws.
Connecticut Carry will continue to work to educate members of the public and the members of these state agencies as well as local police departments about the rights of the public and the laws of the state. We will also work to stop these rogue units from engaging in abusive behavior towards the public.
More information on this issue can be found on http://ctcarry.com.
Connecticut Carry is dedicated to advancing and protecting the fundamental civil rights of the men and women of Connecticut to keep and bear arms for defense of themselves and the state as guaranteed by the United States Constitution and the Constitution of Connecticut.