permit denial

Discussion in 'MWT Community Bulletin Board' started by Outdoorsfool, Mar 7, 2006.

  1. Outdoorsfool

    Outdoorsfool New Member

    704
    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Missouri
    Should a permit be denied to someone simply because they underwent a psychiatric evaluation? Seems to me this individual may be more qualified to have a permit then some of the loonies out there that have never had a psychiatric evaluation!! :rotfl: I specifically dislike the reference to a "modified right".

    News Tuesday, March 07, 2006

    Court hears gun permit case

    Published: Tuesday, March 7, 2006 1:12 AM CST
    E-mail this story | Print this page

    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A man who was denied a permit to acquire a gun after being evaluated at a mental health facility argued Monday to the state Supreme Court that his constitutional right to due process was violated.

    David Nelson was sent to a mental health center for a 96-hour evaluation in September 2003 over fears he would harm himself. He was evaluated and released with no finding of mental illness or need for further treatment.

    Last year, he applied for a permit to acquire a weapon. The Callaway County sheriff’s office denied the request, citing a section of law barring people who were committed to a mental health center from obtaining a permit.

    The law is separate from one allowing people to carry concealed weapons, but the mental health provision is similar.

    The sheriff argues that he followed the law and that it makes no distinction between someone being detained and committed.

    County prosecutor Robert Sterner said the Legislature could differentiate between the two ‘‘but they’ve given us an equal sign.’’ He called the right to acquire a weapon ‘‘a modified right.’’

    Nelson’s attorney, Geoffrey Preckshot, argued that detention and commitment are not the same thing, and his client, and others like him, should not be denied the right to get a gun for life over a mental health evaluation that found no illness. He also noted the man is a Department of Corrections employee and can carry a weapon as part of his job.

    ‘‘Whether or not he was mentally ill is collateral,’’ Preckshot told the court. ‘‘This (96-hour evaluation) order could be based on a lie.’’

    Nelson was denied due process, Preckshot said, because the initial mental health evaluation procedure included no opportunity for Nelson to defend himself or have an attorney present, yet it led to the sheriff’s office refusing to give him a weapon permit.

    Supreme Court judges asked many questions of both attorneys, but some expressed concern that someone could lose his right to acquire a gun after a mental health evaluation that the person couldn’t challenge and that didn’t result in long-term commitment.

    ‘‘Is it appropriate to use it later?’’ asked Judge Laura Denvir Stith.

    Chief Justice Michael Wolff said the law clearly prohibits someone who has been committed to a mental health center from obtaining a permit to acquire a weapon, but he added, ‘‘Detention’s not in that same category.’’

    Preckshot said the simple solution would be for the court to determine that commitment to a mental health center does not include the 96-hour evaluation. Otherwise, he said, the law on acquiring a weapon permit should be struck down.

    ‘‘Commitment is a subset of detained,’’ he said. ‘‘Everyone who’s detained is not committed.’’
    ———

    The case is David Nelson v. Dennis Crane, SC87205.

    On the Net:

    Supreme Court: http://www.courts.mo.gov/sup/index.nsf
     
  2. Nicholas

    Nicholas New Member

    Oct 5, 2005
    Saint Charles, MO
    NO, imho, not just for an evaluation if it does not lead to committment. This sounds like there may be more history than we are privy to!
     

  3. runner

    runner New Member

    135
    Sep 24, 2004
    Sounds like a sherriff that doesn't like the present law to me. Any excuse will do.
     
  4. Outdoorsfool

    Outdoorsfool New Member

    704
    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Missouri
    That's kind of what I was thinking runner...either that or a personal thing between sheriff and permit applicant. It'll be interesting to see what the final outcome is on this.
     
  5. Hoytshooter

    Hoytshooter Active Member

    Mar 7, 2005
    Small Buck, MO
    It will be interesting to see. I agree with Nicholas that maybe there are some facts that we don't know from that reading which had an effect on the decision.
     
  6. Outdoorsfool

    Outdoorsfool New Member

    704
    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Missouri
    Here's an update on this. Looks like Supreme Court ruled correctly....at least in my opinion! :cool:

    Supreme Court rules in favor of man who sought gun permit
    By CHERYL WITTENAUER/Associated Press Writer
    Published: Wednesday, April 12, 2006 1:24 AM CDT
    E-mail this story | Print this page

    A man’s 96-hour, involuntary detention in a mental health facility was not a commitment and should not have disqualified him from obtaining a permit to acquire a gun, the state Supreme Court said Tuesday.

    The court said David Nelson’s ‘‘detention’’ for evaluation and treatment in 2003 did not result in his being ‘‘committed’’ to a mental health facility for purposes of restricting his right to acquire a gun. In ruling in Nelson’s favor, the Supreme Court reversed and remanded a lower court decision that had sided with the Callaway County sheriff who had denied the gun permit.

    ‘‘The way he saw it,’’ the earlier ruling ‘‘painted him as being crazy,’’ Nelson’s attorney, Geoffrey Preckshot said of his client Tuesday. ‘‘He’s feeling a tremendous amount of vindication in having his good name restored. He isn’t crazy.’’

    Nelson was sent to a mental health center for a 96-hour evaluation in September 2003 over fears he would harm himself. He was evaluated and released with no finding of mental illness or need for treatment.

    Last year, he applied for a permit to acquire a weapon. The Callaway County sheriff’s office denied the request, citing a section of law barring people who were committed to a mental health center from obtaining a permit.

    The law is separate from one allowing people to carry concealed weapons, but the mental health provision is similar.

    The sheriff argued that he followed the law and that it made no distinction between detention and commitment.

    Both a small claims court and circuit judge agreed with the sheriff. But the Supreme Court disagreed, ruling that ‘‘detention’’ and ‘‘commitment’’ each has a different legal status in Missouri law.

    County prosecutor Robert Sterner said Tuesday he understood the argument Nelson was making, but that the statute is not as clear as it might have been.

    ‘‘The statute does not consistently use the word to mean one thing, and the other to mean something else,’’ Sterner said.

    Nelson, a state correctional officer, was taken into custody over fears he would hurt himself, although he had threatened no one, Preckshot said. A mental health professional determined he was experiencing a ‘‘stressful event in his life,’’ and made no determination he was mentally ill, he said.

    The case illustrates that all it takes to turn someone in for a mental health evaluation and treatment is an affidavit, which nearly cost him the right to acquire a gun for the rest of his life, Preckshot said.
     
  7. Nicholas

    Nicholas New Member

    Oct 5, 2005
    Saint Charles, MO
    Sometimes the system knows things we do not...
     
  8. 67Firebird

    67Firebird Chicken Man

    I agree that he should not have been denied, but your thread title is wrong. It says CCW permit, but the topic is actually about a permit to purchase. :wave::stickfight:
     
  9. Outdoorsfool

    Outdoorsfool New Member

    704
    Jul 14, 2003
    Central Missouri
    Is that better now? :moon: :wave:
     
  10. 67Firebird

    67Firebird Chicken Man

    Yessiree! :rotfl::wave: