Last week, we lost a case in U.S. District Court, Pena v. Lindley. I respond to media inquiries about my cases whenever reasonably possible, whether the news is good or bad, and this time was no different. So it’s a bit dismaying to see an AP story about the case ending with the sentence, “Messages seeking comment from Alan Gura, an attorney who represented the gun groups, weren’t immediately returned.”
The decision came down on Thursday, February 26, at 12:29 pm Pacific/3:29 pm Eastern.
The AP called and emailed me on Friday, February 27, at 9:20 pm Eastern. The email read, “We are writing a story on the ruling tonight, Friday, February 27, and would appreciate hearing from you.” So, yes, I didn’t “immediately return” the messages that came way after hours on a Friday concerning a case that was decided at lunchtime the previous day. And when I got the message over the weekend, the deadline had apparently passed.
I did return a message from, and give a quote to, a Bloomberg reporter who found me Friday afternoon at 5:06 pm my time.
To be fair to the AP, I don’t know when they learned of the ruling, although they must have people who watch the courts for interesting developments. And what they wrote is technically true. But maybe the AP should have written, “Messages seeking comment from the plaintiffs’ attorney, sent at 9:20 pm his time on a Friday, to comment on a court decision announced midday Thursday, were not immediately returned.” That would have given it a different flavor.
And even if the AP couldn’t have managed to wrangle a comment from me, it would have made sense to report that the case was being appealed, a fact that had been left on the docket within 29 minutes of the judgment.