Today, May 2, 2014, gun rights advocacy group, Florida Carry filed two lawsuits for blatant violations of Florida's law that preempts local gun control. Joined by the Second Amendment Foundation, the first case filed is against the City of Tallahassee. In the second case, Florida Carry filed against Broward County.
"Since 2011, Florida Carry has prompted the repeal of anti-gun ordinances and regulations in over 200 Florida jurisdictions, including municipalities, counties, colleges and state agencies," noted Florida Carry Executive Director Sean Caranna. "Usually the jurisdiction is responsive to our notification that there is a problem and no lawsuit is necessary. It is a rare and unfortunate circumstance when local government leaders decide to willfully break state law, despite the personal penalties. When local officials are willing to knowingly violate the law in order to suppress the rights of law-abiding gun owners, they can expect that we're going to make them pay for it."
Broward County has ignored repeated attempts by Florida Carry to gain its compliance with state law and left us with no choice but to file this case. When local officials refuse to stop breaking the law in order to deny the rights of Floridians, Florida Carry will act to demand that people's rights be protected. Broward County Administrator Bertha Henry is also named as a defendant in the case. Florida Carry is represented by Miami attorneys Michael T. Davis and Benedict P. Kuehne of The Law Offices of Benedict P. Kuehne, P.A. and Florida Carry General Counsel Eric J. Friday with Fletcher & Phillips of Jacksonville.
Florida Carry, Inc. and the Second Amendment Foundation joined forces in the lawsuit against the City of Tallahassee for refusing to repeal ordinances restricting the use of firearms in defiance of Florida's firearms preemption law.
"We're happy to partner with Florida Carry on this legal action," said SAF founder and Executive Vice President Alan Gottlieb. "This is not the first time we have had to take a city to court for violating a state preemption law. Why municipal governments still don't understand the concept of preemption is a mystery to us"
"Clearly," Gottlieb observed, "Tallahassee has way over-stepped its authority under state preemption. The Florida Legislature has exclusive domain over firearms regulation. When the law was passed, it nullified all existing, and future, city and county firearm ordinances and regulations.
"Mayor Marks and his colleagues on the city commission knew all of this," he added, "but they rejected an opportunity to bring the city into compliance in February. Their stubbornness really left us no choice but to join Florida Carry in this action."
Named as defendants in the Tallahassee case are Mayor John Marks, and City Commissioners Nancy Miller, Andrew Gillum, and Gil Ziffer. SAF and Florida Carry are represented by Jacksonville attorneys Lesley McKinney with McKinney, Wilkes & Mee, and Florida Carry General Counsel Eric J. Friday with Fletcher & Phillips.
Florida Carry is a non-profit, non-partisan, grassroots organization dedicated to advancing the fundamental civil right of all Floridians to keep and bear arms for self-defense as guaranteed by the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and the Florida Constitution's Declaration of Rights.
Florida Carry, Inc. was organized in order to better coordinate activities, effectively lobby the state legislature, and to provide a legal entity capable of filing suit to demand compliance with state and federal law. Florida Carry stands to represent our members, the approximately 8 million gun owners, and countless knife and defensive weapon carriers of Florida.