Cases & Deals

Veteran successfully obtains firearm after attorneys establish lack of prior conviction

Client(s) Kelly, Ronald Edward

On August 30, 2013, Mr. Ronald Kelly, an honorably discharged United States Army veteran, successfully purchased a firearm after having been obstructed from doing so by the federal government. Last spring, Mr. Kelly, who lives near Houston, tried to purchase a .22 and was put on an administrative "delay" by the national background check system due to a supposed conviction in 1971, when he was 17, for simple possession of marijuana, for which he spent no time in jail. Such a "delay" effectively prevented him from purchasing and possessing a firearm. Mr. Kelly's correspondence with the FBI only led it to request that he fill out more forms and provide information. Upon hearing about Mr. Kelly's case in the press, Jones Day attorneys offered to help, including, if necessary, bringing claims under federal firearms statutes and the Second Amendment challenging the government's refusal to let him freely purchase a firearm. Jones Day attorneys then obtained his microfilm judicial records from 1971 from the North Carolina courts and discovered that he had never been convicted-rather, the prosecution had voluntarily dismissed the marijuana possession charge. Jones Day informed Mr. Kelly, provided him his record, and advised him to try again to purchase a firearm before pursuing any litigation. This time, the government approved the transaction. Now that he has correct records of his past court proceedings, Mr. Kelly is free to lawfully possess and purchase firearms without fear of interference by the federal government.