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Rockland Man Appeals Judge's Decision in Gun Ownership Case

PORTLAND, Maine - A couple of weeks after a judge ruled that a Rockland man's civil rights were not violated when his landlord threatened him with eviction over his ownership of a gun, the man's attorney has filed an appeal to the Maine Supreme Judicial Court.

Harvey Lembo filed a lawsuit in November, claiming that his landlord's attempt to evict him if he didn't get rid of his gun - after he shot an intruder last year - violated his Second Amendment rights, and the Maine Civil Rights Act.

But Superior Court Judge William Stokes ruled that Lembo's situation didn't meet the standard of the Civil Rights Act.

Attorney Patrick Strawbridge represents Lembo; he says that's not how he and his client see it. "Superior Court decided that the Maine Civil Rights Act did not permit a tenant threatened with eviction to bring a claim under the Civil Rights Act because the threat of eviction was not a sufficient threat of the use of force or the threat to property. We disagree with that."

Lembo shot the intruder in September of 2015, after several break-ins at his apartment. He's argued that he needs the gun for protection because he uses a wheelchair. The National Rifle Association and other gun rights groups have supported Lembo in the suit.