For Immediate Release
Assistant Director: 202-898-0792.
Court Throws Out NRA Lawsuit Against Pittsburgh Gun Trafficking Law
PITTSBURGH, PA - Senior Judge R. Stanton Wettick of the Pennsylvania Court of Common
Pleas of Allegheny County today threw out the National Rifle
Association’s lawsuit against the City of Pittsburgh which sought to
strike down the city’s ordinance to prevent gun trafficking by
requiring the reporting of lost or stolen guns. The Brady Center’s
Legal Action Project argued the case in court and is representing
Pittsburgh pro bono.
Daniel Vice, Senior Attorney at the Brady Center to Prevent Gun
Violence, who argued in court on behalf of Pittsburgh, said, “We’re
pleased the court threw out the NRA’s baseless lawsuit. The NRA should
end its hypocrisy in claiming to support enforcing the laws on the
books and then suing to strike down common sense gun laws. It’s too
easy for dangerous criminals to get deadly weapons.”
Judge Wettick agreed with the Brady Center’s arguments that the NRA and
individual gun owners lacked standing to bring the case. The law the
court upheld today requires that gun owners notify police when their
gun is lost or stolen, which aids police and law-abiding gun owners by
enabling police to quickly investigate and retrieve stolen guns. The
ordinance also prevents gun traffickers from falsely claiming that
their guns were “stolen” after guns they illegally sold are recovered
at crime scenes and traced back to them.
Stolen guns represent a significant source of trafficked guns, with
500,000 guns stolen from private citizens each year. About one of
every six trafficked guns are guns stolen from residences. Guns are
stolen in Pennsylvania at a rate of 12 guns per 1,000 households.
Pittsburgh is one of eight cities and towns in Pennsylvania that has
enacted a law requiring the reporting of lost or stolen guns. The
Brady Center has stated that it will assist pro bono any Pennsylvania
jurisdiction in defending these laws against NRA challenges.
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