Court Case On The Second Amendment

Essay by PaperNerd ContributorCollege, Undergraduate October 2001

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A Case on the Second Amendment to the Constitution: The People v. Zerillo The Second Amendment to the Constitution states that " A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."� In others words, if one is protecting his or her state, or the owned property that is located in his or her state, then the right to bear an arm is given to the individual.

With the Second Amendment being in effect, the states were now responsible for writing their own section of this amendment right in order to ensure that those who had the right to bear arms were exercising their rights responsibly. The state legislatures made numerous laws limiting state citizens' rights to bear firearms. As time went on, these laws began to contradict the constitutional right to bear arms.

One of many states guilty of legislating these state laws was the state of Michigan--in a particular case, the case of The People v. Zerillo.

On September 25, 1921, on the corner streets of Chase and Russell, in the city of Detroit, Michigan, a man named James Zerillo (alias Joseph Zerillo) was driving his Marmon touring car with four or five men. These men were equipped with shotguns. Zerillo had no shotgun, however he did have a .38-caliber revolver in the pocket of the door of the touring car. When authorities discovered the revolver in Zerillo's car, they charged Zerillo with the use of an illegal firearm. The authorities in Michigan charged Zerillo under the Game Law which states the following: "It is a misdemeanor for an unnaturalized foreign- born resident to hunt for or capture or kill any wild bird or animals, either game or otherwise, of any...



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