New Jersey Attorney General Concedes Stun Gun Ban Violates Second Amendment
The New Jersey attorney general conceded that the New Jersey stun gun ban violates the Second Amendment and is therefore unconstitutional. In a brief released on November 7, 2016 that was submitted in the Appellate case of State v. Lambert, the Office of the Attorney General stated:
“[T]he State agrees with defendant that New Jersey’s stun-gun statute, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-3h, is unconstitutional in light of Caetano v. Massachusetts, 136 S.Ct. 1027 (2016), and defendant’s conviction under that statute should be vacated in the interests of justice.”
In the case of State v. Lambert the Appellant, Lambert, was charged with possession of a stun gun in violation of N.J.S. 2C:39-3h in 2009. Lambert did not raise the issue of the ban being unconstitutional during the original case. However, his lawyer, Joshua Sanders, Esq., of the New Jersey Office of the Public Defender Appellate Division challenged the ban successfully during the appeal. The office of the New Jersey attorney general went on to say:
“[T]he State agrees with defendant’s reading of United States Supreme Court precedent. To briefly recap Second-Amendment jurisprudence, the United States Supreme Court held that “the Second Amendment extends, prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms, even those that were not in existence at the time of the founding,” District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570, 582 (2008), and that this “Second Amendment right is fully applicable to the States[.]” McDonald v. Chicago, 561 U.S. 742, 750 (2010).”
Stun gun bans remain in effect in Hawaii, Massachusetts, New York, Rhode Island, New Orleans, Philadelphia, and several other smaller towns across the U.S.