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whomper
08-09-2007, 12:20 AM
http://www.sacbee.com/101/story/316453.html
FBI reportedly probes gun permits
Suit alleges ex-Sheriff Blanas issued licenses for concealed weapons as political favors.
By Christina Jewett - Bee Staff Writer
Published 12:00 am PDT Thursday, August 9, 2007
The FBI is looking into concealed-gun permits issued by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, according to documents filed in a lawsuit that alleges former Sheriff Lou Blanas issued permits as political favors.

Documents filed Friday in the federal civil rights suit say FBI investigators have requested gun permit documents from the department, which include a permit Blanas issued to Sacramento businessman Edwin G. Gerber. Gerber gave $3,500 to Blanas' election campaign, election records show, and bought a vacation home with Blanas in Reno in the fall of 2005, according to property records.

The former sheriff signed Gerber's gun permit a day before leaving office last summer. He issued the approval without following the department's usual procedure, which calls for a three-person committee to review applications from people asking to carry a loaded gun in public, according to interviews and court documents.

FBI spokesman Steven Dupre declined to say whether an investigation was taking place.

Sacramento County Sheriff John McGinness said he could not comment on any possible FBI review.

Law enforcement sources said the FBI did request information from the department's concealed-weapons permit division. But those sources said they had no knowledge of whether Gerber's application was included in that request.

Blanas and Gerber did not return repeated calls from The Bee.

State law says sheriffs and police chiefs can award concealed-weapon permits based on "good cause" to people of "good moral character."

The Sacramento County Sheriff's Department sets the bar higher. Applicants typically are interviewed by a deputy and required to take a gun safety class in addition to facing the review panel.

McGinness said the permit approval committee was put in place more than a decade ago to keep the elected sheriff from deciding who gets the permits and giving the appearance of political motivation.

He said the system has worked generally well, but here, as in many counties, it is a "nebulous" endeavor that he'd like to see better organized.

McGinness said Gerber's application was for an "emergency permit" that should have lasted 90 days -- instead of the two years of most permits.

Gerber said in his application that he carried "large sums of cash" and wore expensive jewelry.

The department revoked Gerber's permit in December -- five months after it was issued, McGinniss said.

Attorney John Lavra, who works for a private firm that contracts with the county, represents Blanas and the county in the civil rights suit. He would not comment specifically on Gerber's permit, saying only that all permits are issued for good reason.

About 250 civilians hold gun-carry permits issued by the Sacramento County Sheriff's Department, officials said. While it is legal to have a gun in one's house or business, it is a crime to walk around with a loaded gun without a permit.

The lawsuit, filed in December 2003 when Blanas was sheriff, alleges that Blanas denied David Mehl, a chemical engineer, and Lok T. Lau, a retired FBI agent, equal protection under the law when his office turned down their applications for gun-carry permits.

"It's about political influence, power and money," said their attorney Gary Gorski. "Anyone who gives money to the sheriff and applies for a (permit), gets a (permit). There are a lot of people who apply for one and need one but don't get one."

Lavra said both men were denied permits for good cause and in accordance with long-standing policy.

"We believe that the undisputed evidence in the case will show that each were denied a (weapon) license based upon legal and legitimate and sound reasons," Lavra said.

On Friday, Gorski filed documents claiming Blanas' attorneys have been withholding evidence in the federal case.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Kimberly Mueller ruled Monday that Gorski and Blanas' attorneys should try to work out their disagreement before an Aug. 22 hearing about the evidence.

In the paperwork filed Friday, Gorski says a Sheriff's Department clerk told him during a sworn deposition that the FBI was investigating gun-carry permits. That includes Gerber's hand-scrawled application, Gorski said.

The application contains only a brief explanation for why Gerber was seeking to carry a loaded gun: "Carry large sums of cash $4,000-$5,000. Wear $45,000 watch & rings -- expensive jewelry."

On the cover sheet, the word "approved" is checked, and the comments line says simply: "Approved by Sheriff Blanas," with his signature.

McGinness said Gerber's permit was revoked in December when officials noted that the 90-day period had passed and that Gerber had not provided proof of completing a gun safety class.

On Dec. 19, Gerber sent a letter to the department stating that when he applied for the permit, he told Blanas he had been assaulted three times in Sacramento restaurants and bars, increasing his need for protection. Gerber had not included that information in his application or filed police reports, McGinness said.

In May -- five months after the department had pulled Gerber's permit -- Blanas called and suggested the new sheriff revoke the permit because the threat against Gerber no longer existed, McGinness said.

Gorski said hundreds of applicants with more compelling needs to carry a gun have been rejected over the years. His filings allege that six major Blanas contributors were issued weapon permits, as well as several business associates of Blanas and his wife.

According to campaign finance filings, Gerber's company, Energetic Paint & Drywall Inc., gave $1,500 to Blanas in August 2003, part of a $3,500 contribution during the election cycle.

Two years later, Gerber, Blanas and his wife, Nanette Blanas, took out a $518,000 loan together for a house worth $647,000 in Reno, records from the Washoe County assessor and recorder show.

Elections records show that Gerber made two $5,000 contributions to McGinness in August 2006. McGinness returned both, records show.

"That was money I didn't need, so I gave it back," he said.

McGinness said he has assigned new captains and chiefs to the permit-review panel. He said he plans to change the system, making it computer-based and standardized. He said he will have veto power over permits awarded from now on.

MadMex
08-09-2007, 4:49 AM
Simply amazing.

aileron
08-09-2007, 5:20 AM
Id like to read the sound reasoning part of why those that have them are allowed a firearm permit vs. those with plausible threats to their person are denied.

How do they test for plausible threat, and how do they test for removal of threats to a person after it was found that that person has cause?

How do they know someones life isn't in or is in danger? I'd like to see that logic written out in a test.

Stanze
08-09-2007, 5:44 AM
Isn't all LEO active, reserve, retired allowed to CCW nationwide w/o a permit per HR 218 signed into law by Bush?

Good on them for suing!

A San Diego Sheriff's deputy once told me off the record in the mid 90's to obtain a CCW in San Diego, you have to be at least 2 out of 3 things: "Rich, white and know the sheriff".:mad:

I'm zero out of three.:p

Paladin
08-09-2007, 6:27 AM
Sheriff violates federal law. FBI is investigating. Hmmm?

Could the now ex-sheriff be criminally prosecuted for this? Could the now ex-sheriff be sent to federal prison for this? Are Baca, Hennessey, Rupf, Ahern, and others paying attention? :D

Wulf
08-09-2007, 7:18 AM
Baring wholesale change in the mindset of the legislature (scoff), I think making it politically and legally more dangerous for a sheriff to be in the business of denying permits than reasonably issuing of them, is the best route for achieving something resembling shall-issue CCW permiting in this state.

CCWFacts
08-09-2007, 8:10 AM
That is cool! The biggest lie I hear (2nd hand) is "we don't issue because the chief / sheriff is worried about liability." That is a flat-out lie. There is no liability for issuing properly. And now we are seeing, there are huge risks in not issuing. If Blanas had had a policy of issuing to all qualified applicants none of these legal troubles would be possible. Now, at the very least, a lot of legal bills will be paid. Potentially, the former Sheriff could end up behind bars.

If Blanas does end up behind bars, all the 58 sheriffs and ~ 550 chiefs in this state are going to get a wake-up call, and they will realize that every permit they deny creates potential liability for them.

Python2
08-09-2007, 8:53 AM
......Potentially, the former Sheriff could end up behind bars.

If Blanas does end up behind bars, all the 58 sheriffs and ~ 550 chiefs in this state are going to get a wake-up call, and they will realize that every permit they deny creates potential liability for them.

I hope he get thrown in jail. :mad:

simonov
08-09-2007, 8:59 AM
This is why it is important that CCW records remain publicly available. Abuses like this can never be uncovered as long as CCW lists remain secret.

I have little doubt CCWs issued in Los Angeles could reasonably be subjected to similar scrutiny.

Wulf
08-09-2007, 9:03 AM
The biggest lie I hear (2nd hand) is "we don't issue because the chief / sheriff is worried about liability." That is a flat-out lie. There is no liability for issuing properly. And now we are seeing, there are huge risks in not issuing.


You're absolutely correct. If they establish a permitting process that's in compliance with the law, and passes muster with the county legal counsel, they're good to go from a liability standpoint. I believe what they really fear is bad publicity as a result of some firearm mis adventure by one of the people they've permitted. However, I think the risk of a bad publicity falling towards the sheriff is overrated.

During my renewal classes, the item on the curriculum that receives the most attention by the instructor is a review of all the ccw permit mis adventures that have occurred since the last renewal. My county has averaged about 1000 permits in circulation during the time I've been in the process and attending classes. Usually during class there's one story of somebody that didnt comply with the Department policy that you notify them if you every draw your weapon regardless of what happened. Occasionally there's a story of someone who lost their permit due to some non firearm related crime. Once in a great while there's a story of someone who produced a gun or fired a shot when they shouldent have. Once in a while there's a story of someone who lost their permit because they were drinking and carrying. From what it sounds like maybe 1 of these incidents occurs each year from the thousand permittees. I dont ever recall a situation where there was a media hubbub to the effect of "WTH was the Sheriff thinking writing that permit." OTOH, I know there's about a thousand people who cant wait to pull the lever in the voting booth for the incumbent, and are ready to open their wallets if he ever faces a serious challenger.

Glock22Fan
08-09-2007, 9:25 AM
This is why it is important that CCW records remain publicly available. Abuses like this can never be uncovered as long as CCW lists remain secret.

I have little doubt CCWs issued in Los Angeles could reasonably be subjected to similar scrutiny.

We have already done this. We just need a viable client with a good Good Cause, sufficient nerve (and some cash) willing to go the distance.

I can tell you now that if you compare the list of CCW holders with the list of Baca campaign contributors, then there is a massive correlation. Most of the names on the CCW list are either celebrities and/or contributors.

CCWFacts
08-09-2007, 9:28 AM
I have little doubt CCWs issued in Los Angeles could reasonably be subjected to similar scrutiny.

Oh it would be so beautiful if Sheriff Leroy the Scientologist would get investigated for his CCW policies.

Remember, sheriffs and chiefs: Every permit you deny is a potential liability.

Paladin
08-09-2007, 9:49 AM
Sheriff violates federal law. FBI is investigating. Hmmm?

Could the now ex-sheriff be criminally prosecuted for this? Could the now ex-sheriff be sent to federal prison for this? Are Baca, Hennessey, Rupf, Ahern, and others paying attention? :DI should have listed Plummer rather than his recent successor, Ahern. Plummer was in office for 20 years (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?p=642082#post642082). I'm sure any one of them (or any CA Chief) would be reeeally popular in federal prison. They'd never lack any, ahem, "companionship" any night of the week. :eek: "Be sure to pack some KY jelly, sheriff." ;)

I wonder if the Sacto attorney is using the Guillory precedent (http://www.calguns.net/calgunforum/showthread.php?t=58468)?

Two guesses: First guess: Blanas' mistake was denying the ex-FBI agent, who got in touch w/his buddies in the Bureau. Second guess: When the FBI started asking for the info on CCW issuance, one or more of Blanas' buddies in the SO gave him a "heads up" and his call to the current sheriff asking him to revoke that CCW was a feeble attempt to cover his a**. "Too little, too late."

I wonder when a "clean" sheriff/CoP will step forward and say that "May Issue" is too subject to corruption and just too subjective, we need to go to "Shall Issue"?

Perhaps a thread monitoring this case should be started in the "Current Legal Cases" subforum? This case is going to be fun to watch!

Paladin
08-09-2007, 10:09 AM
We have already done this. We just need a viable client with a good Good Cause, sufficient nerve (and some cash) willing to go the distance.

I can tell you now that if you compare the list of CCW holders with the list of Baca campaign contributors, then there is a massive correlation. Most of the names on the CCW list are either celebrities and/or contributors.This is re a private individual bringing a lawsuit in civil court. How do we encourage the FBI to start a federal CRIMINAL investigation of Baca? I don't think the two have to be tied together. As a matter of fact, I bet if the FBI looked throughout the state, they'd find it a "target rich environment" for Equal Protection violations in the issuance of CCWs at the city and county levels of government. Would the FBI be willing to take on a statewide corruption investigation in CA?

As I wrote in my previous posting, "I wonder when a 'clean' sheriff/CoP will step forward and say that 'May Issue' is too subject to corruption and just too subjective, we need to go to 'Shall Issue'?"

How many sheriffs and chiefs would have to be put behind bars before the CA chiefs or sheriffs association calls for CA to follow the lead of 38 other states and go Shall Issue?

mblat
08-09-2007, 10:15 AM
We have already done this. We just need a viable client with a good Good Cause, sufficient nerve (and some cash) willing to go the distance.

I can tell you now that if you compare the list of CCW holders with the list of Baca campaign contributors, then there is a massive correlation. Most of the names on the CCW list are either celebrities and/or contributors.

I have some cash, I would like to think that I have the nerve, I have spotless record, unfortunately I don't think I would qualify as Good Cause...... I am just regular 8-5 person. How screwed up is it?

Wulf
08-09-2007, 10:20 AM
As I wrote in my previous posting, "I wonder when a 'clean' sheriff/CoP will step forward and say that 'May Issue' is too subject to corruption and just too subjective, we need to go to 'Shall Issue'?"

That presumes the legislature would hear them and further than they'd give a hoot and do something about it. I think the legislature is a dead end for more liberal ccw issuance.

I think the holy grail is a successful and expensive lawsuit against a Department for denying a permit to someone who goes on to suffer from the lack of a permit. A woman requesting protection from a violent spouse would be ideal. The situation is ripe for is. The story of an injured and abused wife and mother denied a permit while a wealthy businessman gets issued, would cause a jury to quickly max out the space available in the "Pay in the ammount of:" field on the County's checks.

Such a case would snap around the collective heads of the 58 Sheriffs so fast it would make Alison wonder why the 58 DA's are so slow on the uptake by comparison.

Glock22Fan
08-09-2007, 10:49 AM
I have some cash, I would like to think that I have the nerve, I have spotless record, unfortunately I don't think I would qualify as Good Cause...... I am just regular 8-5 person. How screwed up is it?

Feel free to contact us on the site mentioned in my signature line.

(Because Californian courts ignore the 2nd), any lawsuit would have to be under the 14th (equal rights - "I've got just as good, if not better, a good cause as those rich guys/celebrities you gave a permit to. You are discriminating against me because I am poor and unknown.") As this is subjective, and we don't dare lose, we need a slam-dunk good cause to fight. Once we win, then it loosens the knots for the next contender.

Note: Although there would still be a lot of work to do, we already know where the cracks are in the LASD policy.

Any other people in Los Angeles County feel lucky?

bwiese
08-09-2007, 11:18 AM
This is good and bad.

The "good" - is the lawsuit occurred, valid basis (equal protection, etc.)

The "bad" - the lawyer who's suing is Gary Gorski: you may remember him from the near-disastrous Silviera case. If the poor drafting of Silviera - aside from legal issues, there were proofreading, spelling and grammatical errors! - is any indication, there's rough road ahead.

I do worry that the retired FBI agent may confuse the issue too - since he has an alternate path to CCW via HR218 and really does not need a Sacramento PD/SO permit.

from a website for cops discussing HR218:

Yes, HR 218, the Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act of 2004, applies to retired officers who meet the law's definition of "qualified retired law enforcement officer. How does the Law Define "Qualified Retired LEO?"

As used in this section, the term `qualified retired law enforcement officer' means an individual who --

(1) retired in good standing from service with a public agency as a law enforcement officer, other than for reasons of mental instability;

(2) before such retirement, was authorized by law to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of, or the incarceration of any person for, any violation of law, and had statutory powers of arrest;

(3)
(A) before such retirement, was regularly employed as a law enforcement officer for an aggregate of 15 years or more; or

(B) retired from service with such agency, after completing any applicable probationary period of such service, due to a service-connected disability, as determined by such agency;

(4) has a nonforfeitable right to benefits under the retirement plan of the agency;

(5) during the most recent 12-month period, has met, at the expense of the individual, the State's standards for training and qualification for active law enforcement officers to carry firearms;

(6) is not under the influence of alcohol or another intoxicating or hallucinatory drug or substance; and

(7) is not prohibited by Federal law from receiving a firearm.

If the retired FBI agent kept some current training, he'd be squared away without regard to Blanas and Sacarmento Sheriff's Office idiocies.

CalNRA
08-09-2007, 11:19 AM
1st of all I hope he gets what he deserves for being a crooked sheriff.

2nd, if he does get the punishment, would that push other sheriffs to be less likely to issue? now that an example may be set, wouldn't it be a perfect excuse for the CLEOs to stop issuing on the basis that they don't want to get fired?:confused:

I mean I hope the CLEOs would learn from his mistakes and be more objective in their issuing policies and serve the people but somehow I'm less than optimistic about that possibility.

CCWFacts
08-09-2007, 11:26 AM
Blanas' mistake was denying the ex-FBI agent, who got in touch w/his buddies in the Bureau.

Good call, Paladin. I hadn't thought about it, but that's exactly what happened.

Second guess: When the FBI started asking for the info on CCW issuance, one or more of Blanas' buddies in the SO gave him a "heads up" and his call to the current sheriff asking him to revoke that CCW was a feeble attempt to cover his a**. "Too little, too late."

Yup. If a gov't official accepts a bribe for a permit (CCW, building permit, anything), and then gets cold feet and cancels the permit 10 minute later, that doesn't change a thing. The crime happened when the bribe was accepted, and nothing afterwards can change what happened. The only thing that would help is if he immediately turned himself in and (in the proper way, through an attorney) confessed. That would dispose a court to be lenient. Canceling it months later and trying to obstruct investigation... that does not encourage sympathy.

I wonder when a "clean" sheriff/CoP will step forward and say that "May Issue" is too subject to corruption and just too subjective, we need to go to "Shall Issue"?

Any smart sheriff / chief is going to see, the safest course of action is to not deny legitimate applications.

Wulf: re permit misconduct: Basically sheriffs / chiefs are in a bind. They get legal liability from denying. They get political "liability" from issuing, especially if something really serious ever happened with one of their permittees. (Btw liability is a legal term, so talking about political liability is torturing the metaphor somewhat.) So they make the self-preservation decision: if they get sued for denying a permit, the money comes from the county and it doesn't cause political harm to the sheriff / chief. Doesn't matter that it hurts the city / county and the taxpayers; it doesn't hurt the sheriff / chief. And taxpayers are happy to fund absurd anti-gun lawsuits, even when they are a total loss. I'm sure plenty of people in SF were fine that the city spent > $1mil defending the hopeless and useless Prop H.

Wulf
08-09-2007, 11:50 AM
So they make the self-preservation decision: if they get sued for denying a permit, the money comes from the county and it doesn't cause political harm to the sheriff / chief. Doesn't matter that it hurts the city / county and the taxpayers; it doesn't hurt the sheriff / chief.


I'm NAL, but wouldn't a CLEO open themselves personally up to civil liability if they were using their permiting discretion with a personal nexus, like vacation homes, campaign contributions, personal friendships. The passing wisdom on the Nifong case is that he has likely opened himself to personal liability by using the powers of his office to do nothing more than generating positive PR before an election. That would seem to be a much _less_ tangible abuse of power for personal gain than what a lot of Ca. CLEO's seem to be doing. Seems like the only reason the bad CLEO's get away with it is because its only been recently that light has been shed on who they approve, and there's been no light shed on the people that have been denied and subsequently injured.

Also, while a CLEO not pay for a suit out of pocket. If its too big a hit, or if the county is small, it would certianly impact the county's finances and its ability to provide services which would likely see the CLEO hammered at election time.

CCWFacts
08-09-2007, 12:36 PM
I'm NAL, but wouldn't a CLEO open themselves personally up to civil liability if they were using their permiting discretion with a personal nexus, like vacation homes, campaign contributions, personal friendships.

IAMNAL, so I don't really know, but I would assume that these guys get liability coverage as part of their employment, just like doctors all get covered for malpractice by their employers. I could be wrong on that of course.

Also, while a CLEO not pay for a suit out of pocket. If its too big a hit, or if the county is small, it would certianly impact the county's finances and its ability to provide services which would likely see the CLEO hammered at election time.

Bingo on that. The key would be to hit small entities (counties / cities) where a big judgment would have an immediate and noticeable impact on services. If LA or SF loses a million bucks, literally no one notices any difference. If, say, a small city in Marin Count lost a million bucks, the city could go bankrupt and have to shut down important services.

Again, IAMNAL, but I know that, despite what you might hear, it is not easy to get punitive damages in that range. If there is an injury tort, then yes, I think it is possible. Like if a police chief was presented with evidence that a woman was in danger from a stalker, and the chief denies her permit, and she gets hurt, she may have a very serious (bankruptcy serious) tort. Short of that, I'm not sure if there really is a tort for denying a permit. I think we need a lawyer to fill us in here.

Anyway, every denial is a liability bomb waiting to happen, when / if a denied applicant gets hurt. It would be beautiful to see a massive punitive damages judgment in a case like that (although it would be sad that someone got hurt). All it would take would be one city or county having to shut down major services for the others to realize, we can't afford to risk denials.

Paladin
08-09-2007, 8:08 PM
We have already done this. We just need a viable client with a good Good Cause, sufficient nerve (and some cash) willing to go the distance.

I can tell you now that if you compare the list of CCW holders with the list of Baca campaign contributors, then there is a massive correlation. Most of the names on the CCW list are either celebrities and/or contributors.I should clarify one point: to go for an Equal Protection civil case, you need an aggrieved party to be the plaintiff and evidence that they were treated unequally under the law (e.g., use PRAs to show that their Good Cause did not fly, whereas someone else w/an equivalent GC did get a CCW).

To go for a criminal corruption charge (I assume there are federal and state anti-corruption laws), the investigative agency needs to look at the CLEO's issuing record and see that he has granted CCWs to some w/a certain GC whereas he has denied others with an equivalent GC. Next, they then have to have evidence that those being granted the CCWs have given the CLEO some personal/private benefit (campaign donations; gifts/loans; free vacations). Then a prosecutor files charges. No aggrieved plaintiff w/"sufficient nerve" needed.

So, if you really have possible evidence of corruption, you may want to present it to . . . who? the LAC DA? AG Jerry Brown's office? the FBI? I'm not sure. Given the info in this newspaper article, I'd suggest the FBI since they already are doing this type of investigation. They would be the ones to pick up the ball from there and run with it (to use an American team sports analogy ;)). They're big enough to take down Baca and can't be intimated by him or his toadies, cronies or beneficiaries (some of whom could also see the inside of a prison).

But this is all speculation. I have NO first hand knowledge that Baca is anything but as pure as snow. If you know otherwise, I urge you to act!

*** NONE OF THE ABOVE IS TO BE CONSTRUED AS LEGAL ADVICE ***

Rumpled
08-09-2007, 11:20 PM
You know a big problem with all of this is that the "notes" taken by the issuing agency are not subject to the PRAR's, they are part of an "investigation" and off limits. This wasn't the case way back with Prichess I believe.
This was a big part of Jim March's problems with his attempts.

socalguns
08-10-2007, 12:35 AM
leeeeeeeek, too much beer, i need to take a leeeeeek :43::devil:

CCWFacts
08-10-2007, 7:46 AM
If Gary Gorski is involved, that is bad.

http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2002/12/23/MN210896.DTL
A solo practitioner who usually takes employment cases, has no secretary and copies and collates his own briefs at Kinko's, Gorski has filed a petition for a rehearing before a larger panel of judges and vows if that fails to take his arguments to the U.S. Supreme Court. By himself, if necessary.

He doesn't sound that different from a typical pro se plaintiff.

I wish that guy would move to some other state.

Someone should contact that plaintiff and tell him that he's making a mistake with Mr. Gorski.

Glock22Fan
08-10-2007, 7:54 AM
You know a big problem with all of this is that the "notes" taken by the issuing agency are not subject to the PRAR's, they are part of an "investigation" and off limits. This wasn't the case way back with Prichess I believe.
This was a big part of Jim March's problems with his attempts.

It is true that they are trying this, and it is a hurdle to overcome. However, the courts have ruled that the Good Cause MUST be made available, redacting only those portions that might make the CCW permit holder more open to threats or violence. Of course, you might have to fight for it. Baca tries to limit access by claiming that releasing such information would consitute an onerous burden, but a court would force him to reveal it.

In CBS v Block, there is:

[18] All of the applications made were for a renewal. For the majority of these, no reason for issuance was given or a one sentence explanation -- "Needed for protection of life and property" -- was used.

The appelate judges ruled that this, written by LASD in place of the applicant's actual reasons, was insufficient.

The following is also from CBS v. Block. My emphasis.http://www.californiaconcealedcarry.com/legal/cbs.html

44] Furthermore, there is a clear and legislatively articulated justification for disclosure -- the right of the public and the press to review the government's conduct of its business. Public inspection of the names of license holders and the reasons the licenses were requested enables the press and the public to ensure that public officials are acting properly in issuing licenses for legitimate reasons. Defendants' conclusion that White v. Davis precluded disclosure would obliterate the fundamental right of the press and the people to have access to "information concerning the conduct of the people's business." ( 6250.)


[45] It is possible, of course, that certain information supplied by individual applicants may under certain circumstances entail a substantial privacy interest. For example, the records may contain intimate information concerning an applicant's own or his family's medical or psychological history. In such special cases, the confidential information may be deleted

Glock22Fan
08-10-2007, 8:54 AM
Let me add, if you want more than just a count of outstanding permits, you need to know what you are doing, what you are looking for, and how to go about getting past their barriers.

We have investigated, and are investigating, a number of departments. This can take days, or even weeks, of on-site attendance. One is looking not only for Good Causes, but also blatent breaches of the department's own policy. For example, "Why is there not a psychatric evaluation for this city manager?" (in departments who have this as part of their policy). "Why has this celebrity not taken the training?" "Why didn't the three person panel sign off on this application from the Sheriff's golfing partner?" "Why does this politician have a permit from you when he lives outside your jurisdiction?" and so on and so forth.

Sometimes you get unexpected help. "My boss told me not to volunteer this, but why don't you ask me about . . ." and (the classic) "I've been ordered not to show you this file, so please don't notice that I'm going to accidently leave it on the corner of this desk while I go to lunch."

Yes, and each and every one of those examples has actually happened to Team Billy Jack.

At present, we are working mainly with smaller departments, and even then the job is lengthy. We have put in preliminary work on LASD, but cannot spend the time to do more until we have the right candidate.

In reply to Paladin, we think that is an interesting approach. However, TBJ is developing a process that works reliably and isn't too lengthy. As soon as you try to get the Feds involved, it gets taken out of your hands (or not) and you lose control of the direction. The Feds being involved is one of the reasons that the original case above has already taken 3.5 years.

And don't think that the Feds haven't already read most of our allegations and (as far as we know) decided to let sleeping dogs lie.

However, we'd welcome such action from someone else. There's room for more than one belief (methodology) in our church.