Pennsylvania court sides with man in 4-year fight for license to carry
By Chris Eger
A Commonwealth Court this week handed down a victory for a man who authorities argued shouldn’t have a gun license over old mental health records that no one could produce.
The three-judge panel held in a memorandum released Monday that Richard Brandon was improperly denied a license to carry a firearm by the Pennsylvania State Police over mental health history poorly documented in the Pennsylvania Instant Check System. In short, the state was not able to prove that he had ever been involuntarily committed.
In 2013, Brandon applied to the Butler County Sheriff’s Office for a license to carry but was turned down after PICS reported that he had been previously committed under Section 302 of the state code. State police held that, according to their forms, Brandon was involuntarily committed in 1987 and again in 1994, which he denied.
In the first incident, Brandon was sent to a medical facility for treatment after allegedly threatening his roommate with a rifle. In the 1994 encounter, the state told the court Brandon was in a motorcycle accident while riding with a shotgun strapped to his back and suffered third-degree burns which he would not let a doctor treat. While Brandon did not contest that