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New York Woman Files Suit for Due Process when Denied Second Amendment Rights

by Dean Weingarten |  |  Published on December 27, 2016

Arizona – -(

On April 7, 2015, Donna L. McKay voluntarily admitted herself into mental health unit at the Soldiers and Sailors Memorial Hospital in Penn Yan, NY, for a variety of reasons, including taking some newly prescribed prescription medication and anxiety due to recent events that raised the stress level in her life. A doctor had suggested the possibility of a voluntary admission in the event of another panic attack. Some time after her admission, the treating physician, Dr. Marino, made an online report in compliance with the infamous “SAFE” act.

According to Dr. Marino, the online report did not state that Donna McKay was mentally defective, or that she had been involuntarily committed.On April 13, 2015, the State Police sent a letter to Donna McKay stating that her pistol license, which she had possessed since 2008, was suspended, because of mental incompetence or involuntary commitment. All her firearms, including rifles and shotguns, had to be turned over to the Sheriff’s department for safekeeping while the matter was being adjudicated.

A date of 19 May was set for McKay to appear to respond to the letter. The letter did not state the basis for the ruling. She appeared with counsel on 19 May. Over a year later, on 7 June, 2016, Donna McKay’s pistol permit was ordered restored, and her firearms ordered returned. The routine report from her doctor had been the cause of the State infringing on her Second Amendment rights. In the court decision, the court noted that the state had considerable discretion when deciding whether a person should be allowed to exercise their Second Amendment rights. From

A pistol license may be revoked and cancelled “for any good cause” [see, Mtr of Vale v Eidens, 290 AD2d 612, 613 (3rd Dept 2002)] at any time if the court determines that a licensee is no longer eligible or fit to continue to possess a firearm. PL §400.00(1) (n). This could include an inability to possess a pistol license due to mental illness (P.L. §400.00(1)(i), having been involuntarily committed to a mental health facility [P. L. §400.00(1)(j)] or having a guardian appointed for her [P. L. §400.00(1)(m)].

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