HARRISBURG, Pa. – A Pennsylvania woman Monday sued a county sheriff who revoked her concealed-weapons permit after she upset fellow parents by wearing her holstered pistol to her 5-year-old daughter's soccer game.
Meleanie Hain alleges in a suit filed in a Harrisburg federal court that Lebanon County Sheriff Michael DeLeo violated her Second Amendment rights and prosecuted her maliciously when he took away her permit in September.
Hain, 30, successfully appealed the revocation last month, although the judge who restored her permit questioned her judgment and said she "scared the devil" out of others who attended the Sept. 11 soccer game.
Hain said Monday her home-based baby-sitting service has suffered, her children have been harassed, and she has been ostracized by her neighbors because of DeLeo's actions. In one instance, she said, a neighbor who saw Hain in a local store had the manager ask her to leave because she was carrying her handgun.
"I fought for my right, and now I'm still being punished," she said.
DeLeo's office referred questions to the county's attorney, George Christianson, who did not immediately return a telephone call seeking comment.
DeLeo said at Hain's Oct. 14 appeal hearing he pulled her license after fielding the parents' complaints. He said he based his decision on a section of state law that prohibits concealed-weapons permits from being given to people whose character and reputation make them a danger to public safety.
Hain has said she previously carried her handgun openly to soccer games and practices and other public places without any problem. Her attorney, Matthew Weisberg, said DeLeo had no legal right to take away her permit.
"The sheriff just rides into town and without any hearing, explanation or anything, takes away her license and forces her into court," Weisberg said.