Conflict over "may issue" permits in California
In Orange County, conflict over the new sheriff's plan to revoke CCW permits en masse. The former sheriff issued them as political favors, the new one wants to revoke them by the hundreds. The wonderful nature of unbridled discretion.
After Bates noted that a revocation could show up on a resident's background check, Hutchens halted more than 400 letters that were aimed at revocations. She said she would await direction from the state Department of Justice before moving forward.
This week, Hutchens and county attorneys told supervisors that a revoked gun permit would be filed in a statewide database on firearms but not on criminal history databases.
Awesome - what do you bet if she goes forward with these revocations, that sometime in the future these 400 guys will apply for a purchase permit or re-apply for CCW, etc., and get denied because there's a permit revocation on his record and the database won't show whether it was or wasn't for cause? Sweet.
Hutchens said she understands that her stance on gun permits has created political enemies from the gun activists. But she thinks they are a minority and that the broader community respects her approach.
"The mainstream is much more concerned about law and order issues," Hutchens said, "and having a sheriff's department that is fair and equitable to everybody."
"Fair and equitable to everybody." Great news - she just described Shall-Issue; maybe she's turned the corner. Heh.
Posted by: JT at December 18, 2008 09:01 PM
I can understand the confusion on this issue.
In California, the Sheriff has sole discretion on issuing CCW permits (delegated to local incorporated jurisdictions, but retaining the right to issue county-wide regardless). Until the legislature changes the law, the Sheriff HAS SOLE DISCRETION.
The new Sheriff also has sole discretion on the issue. The current Democrat-controlled CA legislature has repeatedly stated that Hell will freeze over before CCW issuance is liberalized to Shall Issue. The Sheriff is gonna have sole discretion for a long, long time.
If you want to fight it in Court, the CA Supreme Court has repeatedly ruled that because the CA Constitution contains no 2A provision, there is no 2nd Amendment in CA. ("Go away, kid. You bother me.") If by some quirk of justice, the 2A is incorporated under the 14th during President Obama's Administration, it will take years until the 2A applies to California. Then, until the CA legislature changes the law, the Sheriff will still have sole jurisdiction on the issuance of CCWs.
Neat trick, huh?
Posted by: Jim D. at December 18, 2008 09:45 PM
This situation is of course testament to the capricious (and thus onerous) nature of "may issue" provisions, and the false notiont of demonstrating need to exercise a right.
They are finally finished with the district court stage of these Chicago suits ... on to the 7th circuit.
Posted by: Carl in Chicago at December 19, 2008 04:11 AM
Well. Isn't that special.
What do you want to bet that the old Sheriff issued CCW permits in return for campaign contributions? The new Sheriff may have just figured out a way to get 400 new contributors onto her campaign database.
Wanna keep your CCW? Here is the name and address of my campaign treasurer.
The first rule of politics: "What have you done for me lately?"
Posted by: Letalis Maximus, Esq. at December 19, 2008 09:15 AM
Two can play the politics game.
The 400 she just burned should hold a recall election every year in her honor. I'll bet they could easily get enough recall petition sigs using themselves, friends, family, or employees.
Even surviving a recall is the kiss of death for any politician. Voters remember the recall and vote against almost automatically.
Posted by: Kristopher at December 19, 2008 11:37 AM
Sheriff Hutchens was appointed to fill the vacancy when Sheriff Carona was indicted.
One of the issues here is that she has a far more restrictive interpretation of the required 'good cause' for issue; she seems to want to revoke permits on the basis of her preference there, without any disqualifying behavior on the part of the individual holders - and there is no support for that in CA law.
It might be the case that some of the permits were issued illegally; those that can be shown to be so could be revoked. And as Jim D. notes, *issue* is still at the sole discretion of the Chief LEO, so renewals might legally be subject to Hutchens whimsical interpretation of 'good cause'.
Posted by: John S at December 19, 2008 01:41 PM
I am right in the thick of this one.
Hutchens was appointed, not elected. Her
appointment can be terminated by a majority vote
of the board of supervisors.
Several simple options to liberalize CCW in OC
have been presented to her. She is an ignorant,
reactive dolt, and is uninterested in conforming
to the wishes of her bosses -- the board of
supervisors. In public and in private she has
made it clear she wants to issue zero CCWs.
She was caught flat-out lying on this issue. It
was brought up in public at the BOS meeting last
month. It is not good to be caught lying to
All are waiting for the Nordyke ruling. If
Nordyke goes hard against the state, the position
of the sheriff is invalidated. If it goes
easy against the state, the situation can be
litigated. More than one atty. have agreed to
litigate based on a good Nordyke ruling.
The current law is widely known to have been
put in place for the sole purpose of keeping
blacks, hispanics and Chinese from exercising
their 2nd amendment rights. The legislative
history makes that perfectly clear.
County council is not keen on having to defend
a disliked, lying sheriff that wants to implement
a law specifically designed to obstruct exercise
of voters civil rights.
We live in interesting times.
Posted by: Frank Perdicaro at December 19, 2008 04:10 PM
Your comment, David, that Carona issued permits for political favors is only partly true. I happen to know half a dozen people who received permits, and are seeing them revoked without good cause. These people did not contribute money in any significant amount, if any, to Carona. They are not high rollers or big businessmen or union bosses. Ordinary folks, each, who see the rise of violent crime in parts of OC, reject the "goods victim" mentaility and are qualified to carry and use a weapon judiciously.
As the above post notes, the main difference in this area between Carona and Hutchens is Hutchens' attitude toward self-defense by the unwashed...she doesn't like the idea and that is part of being in her former job, working for the LA Sheriff Lee Baca.
For all Carona's faults, he got CCW right.
Posted by: Harry Schell at December 20, 2008 09:06 AM
"Stroke of the pen, Law of the land. pretty cool,huh?" -Paul Begalla, Clintoon administration advisor. (and they're baaaaack.)
Posted by: The Mechanic at December 22, 2008 04:41 PM