Supreme Judicial Court Requires Prosecutors to Prove Lack of License in Firearm Cases
Since its 2008 decision in Heller, the U.S. Supreme Court has been expanding the understanding of the constitutional right to bear arms under the Second Amendment. Heller held that the Second Amendment right is individual, and not limited to the context of an organized, “well-regulated militia.” In 2010, the Court held in McDonald that the right to bear arms applies to the states, not just against the federal government. Both Heller and McDonald addressed the context of keeping a firearm for self-defense in the home. But in the 2022 case of Bruen, the Supreme Court extended that right beyond the home, to include carrying a firearm in public, at least under some circumstances. State courts and legislatures are still grappling with the consequences of that decision.