WWL>Topics>>12-13 10:10am Don Dubuc, felons and firearms

12-13 10:10am Don Dubuc, felons and firearms

Dec 13, 2013|

Louisiana Supreme Court ruled Monday against the felon, Glen Draughter, arguing he had a right to carry a firearm based on the amendment that strengthened gun rights. DA Cannazzaro was concerned that this amendment would force the opening" of all 80 of the state's gun laws to a constitutional challenge. " He was proven correct. Now a high court is going to have to sort through them and decide if any of them remain constitutional and if they need to be revised or omitted. Where does this lead and what are the implications for gun owners in Louisiana? We were joined by DA Leon Cannizzaro.

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Automatically Generated Transcript (may not be 100% accurate)

Isle Louisiana Supreme Court ruled earlier this week on Monday against a felon -- broader. Arguing he had done right to carry a file on based on that amendment that. Strengthen gun rights in Louisiana. Where it was overwhelmingly passed earlier. A lot of people including I guess New Orleans district attorney Leon Canas Errol we're very concerned. About the implications of this amendment that it would open up the door for a convicted felons to get their rights reinstated. To carry firearms in fact even something that could be more. Devastation blow to the State's gun laws -- meeting constitutional challenges. He was certainly right about the challenges now I don't like a lot of other people felt that. Our judges. Our attorneys. You know wiser heads would prevail and I think they did in this case saying he's still a felon. He does not have the right to carried this new amendment doesn't cleared him of anything in that nation now whether that is going to be a landmark case and set some precedent. That's what we're gonna discuss with both -- for rape and I guess that joins us now -- Canas Leon thanks for joining us. Thank you guys. If you would Leon let's go back a little bit for folks that may not be up on this issue and tell us about that amendment that was passed. What's your concern was and now what do you think about it and we've got the first ruling one of those challenges. Well essentially the met the amendment said that if there was going to be any law. That would be passed. By the legislature. To restrict someone's right to. -- -- -- That the courts would review such legislation under a strict scrutiny in other -- the state would have to demonstrate. That theory is that compelling reason of very very good reason. As to why someone should be prevented from carrying or not possessing -- -- That my concerns were not certainly not for the law abiding citizen analogue the United States constitution. Says that an individual -- the right. To keep and they forms in his home in his business. In his in his vehicle even that's not the problem but in this forest for instance like convicted felons to drop a case that you just mentioned. Yeah yeah I would think that there should be some restrictions with regard to make convicted felon in the law on the -- and a prohibits someone who has been convicted of certain felony offenses. From carrying a gun. For a period of ten years. After he had completed his jail sentence or probation period or his parole period. So it doesn't. Automatically restrict all convicted felons under all circumstances it's just under certain felony offenses. You cannot carry a gun and -- that there is ethnic cleansing period as we call in the law. Where someone if they tend to stay out of trouble for a period of ten years. After they've completed their sentence then their rights to carry a weapon would be re -- That the concerns I had about the legislation was not for the law abiding citizen. Because certainly it's someone wishes to carry a weapon for it and he has the right to apply. To the law enforcement agency in his powers to get permission from that law enforcement agency to get a permit. Before we just allow someone to walk on the streets with the government. It says that of requirements would be that there appears to be tested to learn -- learn about safety with a gun to learn how to shoot the gun. Not checked them for again any criminal record and things of that sort which again you don't want certain people. Especially people have been convicted of felony offenses especially crimes of violence to be out there carrying guns on the streets of the city. In the product case you know the Louisiana Supreme Court. A -- in criminal court declared that the statute that statute which prevents a convicted felon. From carrying a firearm. Was on unconstitutional. And therefore mister Jordan would have the right to carry -- gone. The Supreme Court reversed the judge's decision on that but. The issue is still open because the Supreme Court in a very very -- decisions said. Since mr. drawer is on probation. He is Kiki was -- probation. At the time he was bound to be in possession of the -- wrong. That is a compelling reason to prevent him the state has demonstrated. -- compelling reason that's a good enough reasons so to speak to prevent him from carrying a gun. And they said the same thing about if someone was on parole at the time he was bound to be in possession of the gun. The issue the issue that still remains is the one that will we see in most cases where someone is -- probation. He has finished his parole. TNT but they're still that ten year period. From the conclusion of his probation for the conclusion of his parole. Which has which has not been addressed. So although we we do we are able to still prosecute. Trawler for countering the gun as a convicted -- The larger question still remains open. As to whether or not we will be able to do that which record two other felons who may not be on probation may not be on purple parole. But they are still within that ten year time period. So that being said if someone is beyond off probation and parole is oval with. There in that ten year period a going to be taken on a case by case basis and hopefully the right decision will be made may be some of these people should have their gun rights trees data while other should. Well I agree with you that that that. This will be on a case by case basis I think that's essentially what the Supreme Court is doing. That they are going to look at these cases as they are presented to them individually. That that I guess the concern I have here is the legislation that that the Louisiana legislature has passed is pretty clear. They bet spell out a specific number of felony offenses they spell them out. Our murder rape robbery burglary narcotics violations distribution of narcotics possession of narcotic a bunch of other crimes. The majority of them overwhelming majority of them are crimes of violence. He can't they have said though that it's. They're not saying you can carry a gun if you are if you have been convicted of one of these felony offenses they -- saying that once you have been released. Of your obligations to the -- be jailed on probation. You have to still wait ten years and I think that's good because I think you wanted to make sure. That if the person has completed probation it's not like he he did what he was. Supposed to do while it was on probation but then he's going to revert back to some criminal activity as soon as he gets a chance. While the same thing is when he gets out of jail now when I go back and -- gone so we can work revert back to some criminal activity and possibly hurt someone. So I didn't think the legislature has sent out a good scheme. As far too restricting. Convicted felons but not totally eliminating the possibility. That they can't -- possess -- -- they just have to wait. A period of time in that period being ten years from the date of their completing of any jail sentence or pork are completing their probation. I we're gonna take a break and we come back we don't want to. Talk about maybe if you see some possible remedy for what could possibly a loophole in that ten year waiting period being -- away with a certain. A convicted felon Leon you talked about those law abiding citizens that the legislature did a good thing in. Any restrictions on gun rights would the courts would use strict scrutiny to make a decision on that however. You feel that and in our respect your opinion because you know a lot of these cases you watch him you've you've studied these people. I don't know a whole lot of convicted felons I don't know a lot of bottom and in many cases I'm sure you feel at that ten year period of waiting is absolutely. Necessary do you think that there should be some type of a legislative remedy. To may be close that loop pole modified in some fashion and will you address that. By talking to some legislators -- Michael fourth with that. Well as far -- as it relates to the convicted felons statute as I said I think that statute has been pretty well thought -- I believe that you know that there should be a period of time certainly after someone has completed his sentence. Where that cleansing period make sure that we do we gesture toward the individual thing. Again. The whereby he may hurt somebody and and we certainly don't want him with a weapon if he has a convicted. If you have a felony offense. There are two other cases however that or. One their way where -- -- weird the court to court again. Throughout. That's felons who were caught with weapons in one case. There was a a person who had been convicted of. Possession with the intent to distribute cocaine -- three counts of he'd been convicted of three counts in Jefferson Parish. And the judge. Essentially that course -- we call court to dismiss that. That George now that that is of that case is not really. Sort of in solving this Second Amendment issue because the judge said the gun wasn't operable that's really we are appealing that that's not really the issue there. That's said that's an element of proof we have to establish that the trial. But in the second case where someone was not on probation. 48 burglary again. The judge. It's sad that I don't believe the laboratory is a crime of violence and therefore. He is he dismissed that particular case that we're appealing that where we believe that again. That the burglary. Since the Supreme Court in the draw the case and that they didn't really address -- burglar with a crime of violence I submit to you. Although it might not be listed. In our code as a crime of violence it's certainly involved it could very well involve violent activity when someone breaks into someone else's property. The -- or call. That could certainly lead to a very very dangerous situation. That's the case that is that is going to be argued in front of the appeals court. To determine whether or not that we would -- we have the right to prosecute this individual that defendant's name is Dixon. So that's going to be probably one the next cases that that. Will come out of the court of appeal or the Supreme Court where we attempt to address this issue. So you know there are going to be some other challenges that's that's my concern is that. The problem that we've seen with Pedroia Kasich from the language is Supreme Court handed down. We may have to decide these matters on a case by case basis. And of course that's going to involve a lot it's a great deal of litigation and again you know which. I think the statute in this in the in the convicted felons statute it doesn't necessarily say. That your prohibited. If you -- on probation. Or you don't -- parole it says. Any felony for a period of ten years after that sentence is over so I'm hoping that the Supreme Court will address this in a more general fashion so we do not have to. Deal with the case by case. Each case that comes before them. Again do you think that there is a massive necessity for proactive approach to. Maybe struggle for this coming year with legislation to you know address that or do you think we need to wait and see enough find out if there in fact how them to court rule. On the east ten year period cases and if it gets to be witness to many elements seem to be too lenient and giving too much gun rights back to people who should not have it. Then do we need to do something. Well I I think as I -- I think the statute right now I don't think we need to take any action right now I think the statute covers. Is sufficient I think the point you make is a very good when if the court if the Supreme Court were to say. That some of the some of the violations. Should not be contained in this convicted -- statute that I I suspect that the legislature will look at the statute. I don't anticipate that happening in this session. But I certainly could foresee something like that that the Supreme Court were to declare. Certain aspects of the statute. Illegal or unconstitutional. Then like I certainly -- see the legislature looking at a -- maybe not this year but in a year to get on the road I think that's a possibility but again. I think it's a good statute I think it's it's up it's. It's well directed statute I do think it is not against totally restrict even convicted felons from from carrying firearms they just have to wait. That Leon thanks so much for coming -- was we really appreciate it. Thank you very much you're quite welcome New Orleans district attorney -- on --