On December 13, 2016, in the case no. 16-7165 titled Stephens vs Jerejian, et al, Plaintiff Marc Stephens Petition for Writ of Certiorari was received and docketed by the Supreme Court of the United States. The Attorney General of New Jersey has until January 12, 2017 to file an answer. Stephens is seeking to strike down New Jersey’s Firearm law as facially unconstitutional and in violation of the Second and Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.
Marc Stephens filed a complaint in federal court regarding the former Chief Arthur O’Keefe of the Englewood Police Department, and Superior Court Judge Edward Jerejian denying his firearm application.
Despite testimony in court from police officers from the Englewood Police Department stating that Stephens is not a threat to public safety, his application was still denied. Listen to audio.
Both Chief Arthur O’Keefe and Judge Edward Jerejian denied Stephens firearm permit and license application due to ‘Public Health Safety and Welfare’. Stephens argues in his petition that, “The root of New Jersey’s firearm regulations requiring such as “permits” and “licenses”, and wording such as ‘Public Health Safety and Welfare’ are derived from slavery, and motivated by racism and discrimination.
Stephens put forth evidence proving that firearm laws, not only in New Jersey, but in all 50 states, were created only for “Black Slaves”.
Court records reveal that Marc Stephens is the first litigant in New Jersey to find this information, and present it the courts.
Stephens is also the first person, in our country’s history, to raise in court such a compelling legal argument regarding the second amendment, and the racial history of the firearm laws in all 50 States.
In the case Drake vs Filko, which is the current controlling law in New Jersey regarding the second amendment right to keep and bear arms, the State of New Jersey mentioned that no such evidence existed.
Well, here is the information that Marc Stephens found.
The New Jersey Act reads as follow:
In October 1694, "An Act concerning Slaves” was enacted in New Jersey; [§1] WHEREAS complaint is made by the inhabitants of this Province, that they are greatly injured by slaves having liberty to carry guns...” East New Jersey Laws, October 1694, ch.II, "An Act concerning Slaves, &c.," L&S 340-342.
In New Jersey, "An Act to prevent...Carrying of Guns..by Persons not qualified was enacted," [“And be it further Enacted by the Authority aforesaid, That this Act nor any part thereof, shall be construed to extend to Negro, Indian or Mullato Slaves…, without Lisence from his Master…” May 5, 1722, 2 Bush 293, 295; 1 Nevill [8 Geo. I] ch.XXXV, §6, p.102. http://njlegallib.rutgers.edu/slavery/acts/A15.html
Marc Stephens then point to recent opinions from the Supreme Court of the United States which states, “States formally prohibited blacks from possessing firearms. Others enacted legislation prohibiting blacks from carrying firearms without a license, a restriction not imposed on whites”, McDonald v. City of Chicago, Ill., 130 S. Ct. 3020 - Supreme Court 2010 at 3082”.
“Prior to the Act Concerning Slaves, even slaves carried firearms without a license, or the permission from their master. That is a clear indication that the right to keep and bear arms is a common law right for the people and citizens”, says Marc.
Stephens also points out that the controlling case in New Jersey, Drake vs Filko, admits to enacting gun control laws. “Permits to carry handguns are "the most closely regulated aspect" of New Jersey's gun control laws, In re Preis, 118 N.J. 564, 573 A.2d 148, 150 (1990). Individuals who wish to carry a handgun in public for self-defense must first obtain a license. N.J.S.A. § 2C:39-5(b)”, see Drake v. Filko, 724 F. 3d 426 - Court of Appeals, 3rd Circuit 2013 at 428-429.
Marc points out that the Supreme Court made it loud and clear that States cannot interfere with the right to keep and bear arms, and cannot enact gun control laws. "[T]he State cannot interfere with the right of the citizen to keep and bear arms”. McDonald v. City of Chicago, Ill., 130 S. Ct. 3020, at 3077-3083, and that, “The state cannot enact any gun control law” that they deem to be reasonable. Time and again, however, those pleas failed. Unless we turn back the clock or adopt a special incorporation test applicable only to the Second Amendment, municipal respondents' argument must be rejected”, McDonald v. City of Chicago, Ill., 130 S. Ct. 3020 - Supreme Court 2010 at 3046”.
Marc’s legal argument is almost certain to bring down not only New Jersey’s Firearm Laws, but firearm licensing laws in all 50 States. The only challenges for Marc is obtaining supporting Amicus Briefs, and getting the Supreme Court to approve his petition. Marc's legal argument is solid.
This year, in a case titled Caetano v. Massachusetts, 136 S. Ct. 1027, the Supreme Court, without Justice Scalia, approved the carrying of stun guns in public.
So, Marc Stephens has a great chance of his petition being approved.
Copy of Clerk’s Notice of Docketing from the Supreme Court of the United States
Copy of Marc Stephens’ Petition For Writ Of Certiorari – a Must Read!