NYAPRS Note: The most alarming question here is how the taking of psychiatric medications, and not the apparent sharing of thoughts of harming self or others per the SAFE Act (a law that budget negotiators were unwilling to amend) prompted state police action. Advocates will be contacting Administration officials today for more details.
Oops! New York State Police Admit To Major Mistake In Gun Confiscation Case
By Mike Opelka The Blaze April 11, 2013
In a surprising turnaround, New York State Police have admitted that they made a mistake when they confiscated the guns and suspended the permit of an Erie County resident<http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/04/09/a-form-of-gun-confiscation-has-reportedly-begun-in-new-york-state-heres-the-justification-being-used/> on the grounds of mental health.
Late Wednesday, Erie County, NY, released a statement (posted below) blaming the New York State Police for giving them bad information regarding the suspension of a pistol permit and demand to surrender firearms sent to Amherst resident David Lewis.
(Mr. Lewis was not identified in our original story, his name has since been released in conjunction with court documents filed by his attorney, Jim Tresmond.)
"Erie County Clerk Chris Jacobs said that late today he received a call from the New York State Police informing him that they had provided information on the wrong person when they notified his office of someone whose permit should be suspended because of the new mental health provisions in New York's SAFE Act," the release begins.
"When the State Police called to tell us they made a mistake and had the wrong person ... it become clear that the state did not do their job here and now we all look foolish," the release went on to say in a quote from Clerk Jacobs.
Jacobs appeared on WBEN radio in Buffalo on Thursday morning and explained the details of this administrative debacle. Mr. Jacobs also delivered some pointed comments about how the law was written so badly that mistakes like this were bound to happen. He closed with some fairly damning statements and also asked the state to consider scrapping the bill and re-writing it.
"When you write a piece of legislation in a vacuum, without having hearings, without talking to people about how it's going to implemented in the real world - without jeopardizing people's rights, and putting an individual like this through a nightmarish experience, and infringe on their rights, you have to go back to the drawing board," he said. "And I encourage the legislative leadership here and mostly our governor to take a step back and say 'we didn't get it right' and let's change this."
http://www.theblaze.com/stories/2013/04/11/oops-new-york-state-police-admit-to-big-mistake-in-gun-confiscation-case/ --------- Did Prescription Meds Cause Amherst Man's Pistol Permit to be Revoked? By Kyla Igoe WKBW April 9, 2013
AMHERST, NY (WKBW) - A new case connected to the New York Safe Act has at least one local gun owner fired up. The owner says his pistol permit might have been suspended because of past medications he was prescribed. Hamburg Attorney James Tresmond says his client was forced to surrender his pistol collection valued at $4,000 after his pistol permit was abruptly suspended. Tresmond is not releasing his client's name or his past medical history until he files his lawsuit in federal court in a few weeks. Tresmond believes it might be linked to his client's past medications and believes it's a direct violation of his client's 2nd, 4th and 5th amendment rights along with medical privacy laws.
"It's disconcerting to know that if your doctor prescribes you a psychotropic medication because of a tragic event in your life that results in the state police trolling to pick up this information and if you do have a gun license it will be revoked," said Tresmond.
Under the new Safe Act in New York, anyone receiving mental health treatment is subject to a medical professional filing a report if they feel their patient is,"likely to engage in conduct that would result in serious harm to themselves or others."
Tresmond is now trying to schedule a hearing for his client in Erie County Court to re-instate his permit and get his pistols back. Tresmond says he's also representing a second person under similar circumstances.