The District of Columbia on November 17, 2016, presented Arsenal Attorneys with a check in the amount of $94,121.79, representing payment of attorneys’ fees and costs for the firm's successful challenge to DC’s ban on Tasers and stun guns.
Arsenal Attorneys, on behalf of three District of Columbia residents, last August sued the District of Columbia over its electronic weapons ban. The Complaint in Wright v. District of Columbia can be found here. Arsenal then filed a motion for a preliminary injunction seeking an order from the court to lift the ban while the case progressed. The memorandum of law in support of that motion, minus the voluminous exhibits, can be found here.
In September, the District entered into a stipulation agreeing to allow our clients to possess electronic weapons in their homes. In return we agreed to stay the case for 90 days to allow DC time to repeal the ban on electronic weapons. The court in turn issued an order adopting that stipulation. The stipulation provided for the District to pay our attorneys’ fees.
Currently, pending before the DC City Council is a bill that would repeal the electronic weapons ban. We have been informed by knowledgeable Council insiders that the bill is likely to be passed with few, if any restrictions beyond a prohibition on carry of electronic weapons into schools and a prohibition on possession by persons under 18. It is likely that the repeal of the ban will be accomplished before the end of the year, subject of course to Congress’s review.
"We were prepared to litigate this case pro bono in fulfillment of our ethical duty as lawyers to improve the law," said Managing Attorney Matthew Bergstrom, "However," he continued, "the court's order for the payment of our fees could teach jurisdictions like the District of Columbia of their own duty to uphold and defend the Constitution in its entirety."
"Already our efforts have borne fruit beyond DC," said George L. Lyon, Arsenal Attorneys' lead counsel in Wright v. District of Columbia. "After our DC lawsuit was filed, residents of New Jersey sued the state to overturn its ban on electronic weapons." Their complaint substantially mirrors the complaint Arsenal Attorneys filed in the Wright case. The odds are overwhelming that they will prevail in overturning New Jersey’s ban on Tasers and stun guns. Just last week, in a different New Jersey case, the New Jersey Attorney General’s Office admitted that New Jersey’s electronic weapons ban is unconstitutional."
Stun gun bans remain in effect in New York, Rhode Island and Hawaii, as well as in several jurisdictions in Maryland, and a few other municipalities around the country. Arsenal Attorneys are seeking plaintiffs to challenge electronic weapons bans in Annapolis, Baltimore City and County and Howard County. If you live in those areas and are interested in serving as a plaintiff to challenge the ban, contact Arsenal Attorneys at 703-291-3312.
Arsenal Attorneys' practice firearms law in over 40 states. Our firm represents individual gun owners, gun dealeres, and firearms and ammunition manufacturers. Our team of attorneys have experience as prosecutors, law enforcement officers, firearms instructors, and litigants in landmark Second Amendment cases. We are particularly renowned for our Arsenal Gun Trust solution as an estate plan for firearms and a safer and easier solution for handling and inheriting firearms regulated under the National Firearms Act (NFA). Our lawyers have delivered legal training to the legal profession on behalf of the American Bar Association and the Federal Bar Association. Our work has been featured in the Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, Washington Times, and numerous other print, TV and radio media. While we concentrate on firearms related issues, Arsenal Attorneys offer many of the same services of a general practice law firm, including criminal defense, estate planning, business law, civil litigation, and more.