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Supreme Court ruling on gun permit laws not likely to impact Connecticut: Experts

The High Court ruled that Washington, D.C., and six states, including Massachusetts and New York, must revise their gun permit laws.

WALLINGFORD, Conn. — The U.S. Supreme Court Thursday called out Washington, D.C., and six states by striking down their gun-permit laws as unconstitutional, declaring that Americans have the right to carry a gun outside the home for self-defense purposes. And, while Connecticut is not required to make changes, the court's ruling did reference Connecticut.

Gov. Ned Lamont (D-Conn.) said the Supreme Court ruling "heralds a newly aggressive effort to second-guess commonsense state and local policies that save lives."

And Connecticut Attorney General William Tong called the ruling "reckless."

RELATED: Supreme Court strikes down New York gun law in major 2nd Amendment ruling

"Respectfully, I think that our Attorney General is being alarmist and I would even go so far as to say fear-mongering to the people of Connecticut," said Holly Sullivan, President of the Connecticut Citizens Defense League (CCDL).

The High Court ruled that Washington, D.C., and six states, including Massachusetts and New York, must revise their gun permit laws.

"In New York State, historically in order to get a permit to carry a gun you had to give them a reason why you needed it and that's what the Supreme Court said violates the second amendment," said Michael Lawlor, a professor of Criminal Justice, at the University of New Haven.

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As for Connecticut's carry laws?

"If you just read the law, It sounds kind of like New York's," said Stephen Gilles, a professor at the Quinnipiac University School of Law. "It says you've got to check the law-abiding boxes, no criminal record, etc. and you have to be a suitable person."

But the justices weighed in on that in Thursday's ruling.

"The Supreme Court said when we look at how the courts and Connecticut have interpreted that it means you're going to get the permit unless there's some kind of red flag."

RELATED: Connecticut's Democrat leaders condemn Supreme Court's 2nd Amendment ruling

To be clear, those issued gun licenses in Connecticut are permitted to carry in public.

"By having the ruling that the Supreme Court had today it kind of re-instilled the notion that being able to defend yourself, defend your family does not stop at your front door," said James Emory for the Delta Arsenal firearms business in Wallingford.

Even though Connecticut is technically what is called a "may issue" state, footnote number one of the ruling the Supreme Court says Connecticut is one of three states that appear to operate like "shall issue" jurisdictions.

This is the first time that the High Court has ever weighed in on whether a person has the right to carry a gun outside their home.

Tony Terzi is a reporter at FOX61 News. He can be reached at tterzi@fox61.com. Follow him on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.


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