US appeals court revives lawsuit over gun club restrictions

US appeals court revives lawsuit over gun club restrictions

shooting range gun rifle SOURCE: Hearst HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) — A federal judge should not have thrown out a legal challenge to township zoning rules that restricted operations at a gun range in western Pennsylvania and limited “sportsman’s clubs” to nonprofit entities, an appeals court ruled Tuesday. The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals reinstated the case and directed the district judge to gather evidence, saying Second Amendment rights require a closer examination of the facts than had occurred in the case. The decision concerns William Drummond’s plans to revive the dormant gun range and operate the Greater Pittsburgh Gun Club on a 265-acre property in suburban Robinson Township. The three-judge panel unanimously ruled that the township’s attempt to restrict what occurs on the property could violate the constitutional right to keep and bear arms. “In identifying which rules invade the Second Amendment, we hunt for historical outliers – laws that lack traditional counterparts,” wrote Judge Cheryl Ann Krause, nominated by former President Barack Obama. She said the challenged zoning rules “constitute outliers” and the materials generated so far in the litigation don’t justify those “anomalous features.” She said the case was the first in which her court or the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled on restrictions on firearms purchases or practice. A gun club on the property closed down in 2008, and in 2017 Drummond leased it with plans to sell guns and operate a shooting range. Township residents pressed to limit activities there, and the township board […]

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