Searching over 5,500,000 cases.


searching
Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.

United States v. Bartley

United States District Court, D. Idaho

July 9, 2019

UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, Plaintiff,
v.
JAMES MICHAEL BARTLEY, Defendant.

          MEMORANDUM DECISION AND ORDER

          David C. Nye, Chief U.S. District Court Judge

         I. INTRODUCTION

         Pending before the Court is Defendant James Michael Bartley's (“Bartley”) Motion to Dismiss Indictment. Dkt. 15. Bartley claims that the charge brought against him under 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(4) for illegal possession of a firearm, is unconstitutional as applied in this case.

         Having reviewed the record and briefs, the Court finds that the facts and legal arguments are adequately presented. Accordingly, in the interest of avoiding further delay, and because the Court finds that the decisional process would not be significantly aided by oral argument, the Court will decide the Motion without oral argument. Dist. Idaho Loc. Civ. R. 7.1(d)(1)(B).

         For the reasons set forth below, the Court DENIES the Motion.

         II. BACKGROUND

         Bartley is a 47-year-old, college-educated military veteran. He served two multi-year tours of duty in the United States Army and has lived most of his life in the intermountain west. Dkt. 15-1, at 3. In 2011, at a misdemeanor proceeding for driving under the influence, Bartley's mental competence was evaluated. A state court judge found that Bartley was not fit to proceed because he could not assist in his own defense. The judge also found that Bartley lacked the capacity to make informed decisions about treatment and committed Bartley to the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare pursuant to Idaho Code § 18-212. Dkt. 22, at 1, 6. Bartley was released from the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare's custody approximately six weeks later. Id. at 5.

         On July 29, 2018, Bartley was riding his bicycle in a Boise parking lot when an altercation occurred with another person. At some point in the altercation, Bartley pulled out a Glock pistol and waved or pointed it in the direction of a person. Dkt. 21, at 2. He was eventually arrested, then indicted by a grand jury for unlawful possession of a firearm in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(4) based on his prior adjudication and mental evaluation in connection to the 2011 case. Bartley then filed this Motion to Dismiss Indictment on April 30, 2019.

         III. DISCUSSION

         Bartley argues the indictment must be dismissed based on three theories. First, he argues that his Second Amendment rights have been violated. Second, he argues that he has never been adjudicated a “mental defective” or “committed to a mental institution” and therefore § 922(g)(4) does not prohibit him from possessing firearms. Last, Bartley argues that his due process rights have been violated. The Court finds that Bartley's Second Amendment rights have not been violated, that § 922(g)(4) does apply to him, and that his due process rights have not been violated.

         The Government contends that Bartley's Second Amendment argument is really based on equal protection and therefore the statute in question need only “be rationally related to a legitimate governmental purpose.” City of Cleburne v. Cleburne Living Center, 473 U.S. 432, 446 (1985). Regardless of the standard applied, the Court finds that Bartley's motion fails on all three argued theories, so the Court will not specifically address this part of the Government's argument.

         1. Second Amendment

         When a statute is challenged on Second Amendment grounds, strict scrutiny or intermediate scrutiny may apply. District of Columbia. v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570, 628 n.27 (2008). For a statute to withstand intermediate scrutiny, the Government must demonstrate a “significant, substantial, or important” objective in enforcing the statute. United States v. Chovan, 753 F.3d. 1127, 1139 (9th Cir. 2013). It must then show there is a “reasonable fit between the challenged regulation and the asserted objective.” Id. Conversely, under strict scrutiny, “the law must advance a compelling state interest by the least restrictive means available.” Bernal v. Fainter, 467 U.S. 216, 219 (1984).

         The Ninth Circuit has explained that whether strict scrutiny or intermediate scrutiny applies in a Second Amendment challenge to a statute depends on two factors: “(1) how close the law comes to the core of the Second Amendment right, and (2) the severity of the law's burden on the right.” Chovan, 735 F.3d at 1138. A “restriction that implicates the core of the Second Amendment right and severely burdens the right warrants strict scrutiny while a restriction that does not implicate a core Second Amendment right, or does not places ...


Buy This Entire Record For $7.95

Download the entire decision to receive the complete text, official citation,
docket number, dissents and concurrences, and footnotes for this case.

Learn more about what you receive with purchase of this case.