The Constitution of the State of Nevada, Article 1, § 11(1) provides that “[e]very citizen has the right to keep and bear arms for security and defense, for lawful hunting and recreational use and for other lawful purposes.”
There is little case law interpreting Article 1, § 11(1).
In 1968, the Supreme Court of Nevada held, in a case interpreting the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution, that “the authority to regulate weapons comes from a state’s police powers.”1 However, Hardison predated the 1982 enactment of Article 1, § 11(1).
More recently, in the 2012 case Pohlabel v. State, the Supreme Court of Nevada upheld a ‘felon-in-possession’ statute against a defendant who argued that the statute violated his right to bear arms under article 1, § 11(1) by barring him from possessing a black powder rifle.2 The court held that the right to bear arms was not unlimited,3 and that barring a person convicted of a felony from possessing firearms is rational because of the increased potential for danger.4 The court further concluded that “unpardoned felons are not included among those to whom the Nevada Constitution guarantees the right to keep and bear arms.”5
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- Hardison v. State, 437 P.2d 868, 871 (Nev. 1968) (rejecting a Second Amendment challenge to a state law prohibiting a convicted felon from possessing a concealable firearm).
- 268 P.3d 1264 (Nev. 2012).
- Id. at 1268 (quoting District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008).
- 268 P.3d at 1268.
- Id. at 1272.