It could be a court case that expands Illinois gun-owner rights, but the state Supreme Court has twice avoided making a decision. At issue is whether the Illinois Firearm Owners Identification Card, or FOID, is an unconstitutional infringement on a citizen’s right to bear arms. “Whenever the court can rule on an issue without having to get into the Second Amendment constitutional issue, they will dodge, they will punt,” said Todd Vandermyde, the retired, longtime Statehouse lobbyist for the National Rifle Association. The four Democrats on the high court kicked the case back to the trial court, while the court’s three Republicans joined in dissent. It was the second time the case of the People v. Vivian Brown came before the court and the second time the court declined to rule on the constitutionality of the state statute requiring Illinoisans to receive a permit to legally own a gun. Vivian Brown is a cancer patient living near Carmi in deep southern Illinois, said Richard Pearson, president of the Illinois Rifle Association. She kept a bolt-action, single shot .22 caliber rifle in her home for her personal protection, he added. Brown’s estranged husband reported to the police that she had fired the rifle in the house. Police officers responding to her home could find no evidence that a gun had had been fired. But she was charged with possessing a firearm without a FOID card, and her rifle was confiscated. Brown maintained in her court filing that requiring her to […]
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