Mathew Higbee just scored a big win in Illinois to save the Second Amendment in Chicago, a city plagued with anti-firearm sentiment due to its history of firearm violence.
One of our clients had been unfairly denied the ability to attempt to restore his firearm rights. We worked with our client to try to resolve the issue with the State out of court, but the State refused. Taking the case to the higher court, we were able to protect the Second Amendment and Illinois’ gun rights restoration process.
The Government Was Depriving People of Their Rights
The Cook County State’s Attorney, the prosecutor for Chicago, had been challenging the firearm rights restoration process established by the Chicago legislature. The Cook County State’s Attorney was trying to argue that the legislature’s firearm rights restoration methods could only apply for 30 days from the date of a denial, knowing that this would make it so almost no one could apply to restore their firearm rights. Specifically, the State’s Attorney was trying to apply an administrative appeals law to the process with a 30 day limit on filing.
As an important note, Illinois already has a strict process for firearm rights restoration. If the Court believes a person to be in any way a risk to society, the Court will deny any attempts at restoration. This case challenged arguments made by the state to try to limit firearm rights restoration to make it impossible for most people in Illinois to restore their firearm rights despite the restoration allowed by the Illinois legislature and all of the strict requirements for restoration. We rose to the challenge and fought back against this injustice.
Our Client’s Have Turned to Us Because We Will Always Fight For What is Right
After one of our client’s cases was denied under the administrative appeals law for filing several years after a denial of a firearm application, we decided to fight back. After losing the case in the trial court, we went to the higher court in Chicago and appealed the case against the Cook County State’s Attorney and the Illinois State Police. The State Police, represented by the Illinois State Attorney General’s Office, sided with us and our logical arguments for the Second Amendment. After arguing in court against the Cook County State’s Attorney, the Appellate Court saw reason in our arguments and reversed the prior gun rights denial, holding that the administrative appeals law does not restrict firearm rights restoration petitions made in Illinois courts. In other words, you can apply for firearm rights restoration at any time and you do not have to file within 30 days of your denial.
This is an incredible victory for gun rights in Illinois. The Second Amendment needs protection and we are willing to go the distance to fight for it and what the Illinois legislature has allowed. You can read the opinion here: https://law.justia.com/cases/illinois/court-of-appeals-first-appellate-district/2019/1-17-3148.html or http://www.illinoiscourts.gov/Opinions/AppellateCourt/2019/1stDistrict/1173148.pdf
If you were denied a gun rights restoration petition due to the administrative appeals law, please contact our office at 877-573-7273 so we can assist you in retrying your case.
Disclaimer: we are politically neutral when it comes to gun laws and we believe that the people of each state, through the legislature, should be able to decide how gun rights can be restored after they are lost due to a criminal conviction. Once the people and legislature have spoken, the State should not be able to bypass the law in order to ban guns illegitimately.