New Orleans resident John Ford is one citizen who believes in his right to self-defense enough that he was willing to take the city to court — just so he could carry a stun gun within the city limits. His actions stand as an example of what individuals can do when they’re willing to fight for their unalienable rights.
The backstory: Louisiana law permits possession of stun guns for self-defense without the necessity of a permit, but municipalities are free to enact their own regulations. New Orleans has made the sale and possession of stun guns illegal with a city-wide ban on such devices.
Undeterred, Ford filed a federal lawsuit in U. S. District Court in November against the city and the police superintendent, asserting that the city’s ban violates his state and federal constitutional right to bear arms. Ford sought an injunction against enforcement of the ban. He simply wanted to keep a stun gun in his home for self-defense, rather than having to resort to deadly force if ever confronted with a violent criminal attack.
In his suit, Ford stated:
“(Ford) is aware of the potential legal, economic and psychological ramifications of even the justified use of deadly force to defend himself or his home against a violent criminal attack. (He) would prefer to minimize the likelihood that he would have to resort to deadly force in the event he was forced to defend himself or his home against a violent criminal attack.”
On December 14, the city and Ford reached an agreed stipulated order, granting him the sole right to purchase and possess a stun within the city limits of New Orleans. U.S. District Court Judge Mary Ann Vial Lemmon ordered the stipulation to be adopted. The agreement staved off, for now, an injunction being sought by the suit. According to court records, New Orleans city officials “may” take a look at revising somewhat the municipal code section that bans the sale and possession of the non-lethal devices.
In the order, Ford is allowed to have a stun gun for a 90-day period that began on December 14, 2016.
So, for 90 days at least, Ford, and only Ford, can buy a stun gun and carry it “anywhere a firearm is allowed to be carried either openly or concealed,” without the city having to admit it is violating state or federal law with the ban.
Attorneys for Ford indicate he will push for the injunction if the city does nothing, or not enough to lift the ban.
So, for the next three months, John Ford will be the only private citizen in New Orleans with the legal right to shock you — with a stun gun, that is. –by Michael Wisdom, Senior Contributing Editor, Texas & U.S. Law Shield Blog