CA2: County order to surrender firearms on losing pistol permit wasn’t a “seizure” of his effects

Plaintiff had his pistol permit revoked under New York law. The County’s requirement he surrender his long guns when that happens is not unreasonable. The court questions whether it’s even a “seizure” of his effects under the Fourth Amendment. (He also lost his Second Amendment claim.) Juzumas v. Nassau Cnty., 2022 U.S. App. LEXIS 12820 (2d Cir. May 12, 2022):

Even if the County were the proper defendant to this challenge, it is at best uncertain that the County “seized” his longarms within the meaning of the Fourth Amendment at all, much less unreasonably seized them. See, e.g., Fernandez v. California, 571 U.S. 292, 298 (2014) (“[T]he ultimate touchstone of the Fourth Amendment is reasonableness.”); Kaminsky v. Schriro, 760 F. App’x 69, 72 (2d Cir. 2019) (summary order) (holding that a gun owner who surrendered his firearms to police officers after being notified that, as a felon, he was prohibited from possessing them could not state a Fourth Amendment claim when they were not returned). Cf. Maryland v. Macon, 472 U.S. 463, 469 (1985) (holding that an undercover officer’s purchase of adult magazines was not a seizure of the magazines from a vendor). While the government may seize a person by a mere “show of authority” so long as the person submits, Brendlin v. California, 551 U.S. 249, 254 (2007), the “show of authority” doctrine does not appear to have been extended to cover the seizure of personal effects. See Maureen E. Brady, The Lost “Effects” of the Fourth Amendment: Giving Personal Property Due Protection, 125 Yale L.J. 946, 957-64 (2016) (discussing the limited jurisprudence addressing the “effects” provision of the Fourth Amendment).

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