Case Information: White v. U.S., No. 08-16010-DD (11th Cir., filed April 1, 2009)
At issue: Challenging Congress’ ban on possession of firearms by persons convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors. On June 4, 2008, Defendant-Appellant White was convicted of the federal crime of possessing a firearm after having been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9). On June 26, 2008, the U.S. Supreme Court issued its historic ruling in District of Columbia v. Heller, 128 S. Ct. 2783 (2008), where the Court found that the Second Amendment guarantees that individuals have a right to possess a firearm in the home for self-defense purposes unrelated to service in a well-regulated militia. Based on this ruling, Defendant-Appellant challenged his conviction, arguing that the Second Amendment prohibits Congress from criminalizing the possession of firearms by convicted domestic violence misdemeanants. On January 11, 2010, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit affirmed the federal district court’s ruling upholding the defendant’s conviction and finding that 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9) is a presumptively lawful prohibition on the possession of firearms.
Law Center’s Brief: The Law Center joined the Brady Center and the National Network to End Domestic Violence in support of the United States, arguing that the federal statute prohibiting persons convicted of domestic violence misdemeanors from possessing firearms does not affect the right of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves in the home and does not run afoul of the Second Amendment.