April 2009

Downrange: 04/09

A Small Bit Of Good News

Putting an end to nine years of litigation, the U.S. Supreme Court refused to hear New York City’s request to continue a lawsuit that sought to hold firearms manufacturers responsible for the criminal misuse of firearms. The city’s lawsuit was originally filed in 2000 by then-Mayor Rudolph Giuliani and was continued by Mayor Michael Bloomberg. After the Protection of Lawful Commerce in Arms Act was passed by Congress in 2005, a federal judge threw out the New York lawsuit. Then in April 2008, the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals upheld that decision, saying the

Todd Woodard

Todd Woodard

new law was constitutional. Among the companies sued were Beretta USA Corp., Smith & Wesson Holding Corp., Colt’s Manufacturing Co. LLC, Sturm, Ruger & Co. and Glock GmbH.

  • Despite an ever-worsening economy and slumping retail sales, firearm sales increased in February, continuing an upswing that began after November’s election. NICS reported 1,259,078 checks in February, up from 1,021,130 in the same month a year ago. Data from the FBI’s National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) show background checks on the sale of firearms jumped 23.3 percent in February when compared to February 2008. The increase follows a 29 percent rise in January, a 24 percent rise in December and a 42 percent jump in November, when a record 1,529,635 background checks were performed.

  • Excise taxes paid on sporting firearms, ammunition and archery equipment in 2009 contributed a record nearly $336 million, according to the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service. These contributions are the result of the Pittman-Robertson Wildlife Restoration Act, passed in 1937, which directs funds to states based on land area and paid hunting license holders.

  • Recall: PPK And PPK/S Pistols. Smith & Wesson is recalling all Walther PPK and PPK/S pistols manufactured by Smith & Wesson from March 21, 2002, until February 3, 2009. Certain PPK and PPK/S pistols may permit a round to be discharged without the trigger being pulled. When the manual safety is disengaged, lowering the hammer may cause a chambered round to fire. If you have any questions about this recall, contact Smith & Wesson at 800-331-0852 or email them at PPK_S@Smith-Wesson.com.

  • A three-judge panel of the U.S. Tenth Circuit Court of Appeals ruled unanimously in support of an Oklahoma law allowing employees to store legally owned firearms in locked, private motor vehicles while parked in employer parking lots. This decision upholds NRA-backed legislation passed in 2004. GT

To read up-to-date information on new-product introductions, reporting on gun-liberty issues, and the latest outrages foisted upon us by gun-grabbing political lackeys, log on to our sister site, GunReports.com.