Navarro v. PA State Police

In 2012, a firearm was stolen from appellee Richard Navarro. In November 2013, as a result of appellee’s alterations to a prescription for Percocet tablets, he pleaded guilty to two counts of forgery graded as first-degree misdemeanors and the court sentenced him to twenty-four months’ probation. Sometime thereafter, appellee learned the Pennsylvania State Police ("PSP") had recovered his stolen firearm and he submitted an application for its return pursuant to Pennsylvania’s Uniform Firearms Act (“UFA”). Although the UFA expressly precluded persons convicted of certain enumerated crimes from possessing firearms, forgery was not one of them, and no other precluding classifications existed under Pennsylvania law to bar appellee from firearm possession. However, PSP denied the application because a Pennsylvania Instant Check System (“PICS”) report indicated appellee had disqualifying convictions under federal law. Appellee challenged the denial. The issue presented for the Pennsylvania Supreme Court's review was whether, when denying the return of a firearm on the basis of a federal statute, specifically 18 U.S.C. 922(g), the Pennsylvania State Police had to establish the subject firearm moved in interstate or foreign commerce. The Supreme Court answered "yes," and affirmed the order of the Commonwealth Court remanding the matter for further proceedings. View "Navarro v. PA State Police" on Justia Law