The Free Press, Mankato, MN

State, national news

February 27, 2013

Supreme Court: 2nd Amendment doesn't protect felon

ST. PAUL — The Minnesota Supreme Court says a man convicted of a drug charge is not entitled to the Second Amendment right to bear arms.

Wednesday's ruling comes in the case of Andrew Craig, who was found guilty of possessing a firearm while ineligible to have one. Prosecutors said Craig was ineligible because of a prior fifth-degree drug conviction.

Craig appealed, saying Minnesota's law barring felons from having firearms violated his Second Amendment rights.

The high court disagreed.

The justices found that the Second Amendment gives law-abiding citizens the right to have a handgun in the home for self-defense, but that Craig's drug conviction is a "crime of violence" by statute, and he is unprotected.

The justices say that, historically, the Second Amendment was meant to apply to the "virtuous."

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