Selected Articles from our
The C.A.S.H. Courier
ARTICLE from the Fall 2007 Issue
Jan Haagensen Is Just Asking For The Opportunity To Overturn The Hunter Harassment Statute In PA
Jan writes: This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to overturn and
eliminate the hunter harassment statute in Pennsylvania. An appellate
court, the Commonwealth Court of Pennsylvania, in the person of a highly
respected judge, found that there was no evidence whatsoever to support
the criminal charges that were brought against me by the government.
The government prosecutor relied on the hunter harassment statute to
raise ridiculous and false (but dangerous) charges against me. Because the
trial court judge gave a narrowing construction to the statute, and it was
still used by the government to find me guilty of numerous criminal offenses
(even though the truth as to my innocence, based on the available evidence,
should have been obvious to the state) it is impossible for state actors to
argue that the statute can be “limited” in any fashion or interpreted by any
judge so as to ever be fairly used in the future (i.e., in actual compliance
with constitutional guarantees which do protect our freedoms.)
The attempt to limit the reach of the statute was a failure; a federal
court must take that history into consideration and would have no choice but
to overturn in its entirety (or on its face) a blatantly unconstitutional
law that has already been used to eliminate an innocent citizen’s right to
self-defense. Because this is a First Amendment case, I can argue for the
guaranteed rights of parties who are not yet standing before the court, and
express my concern that the statute, as long as it is on the books, can be
used in the future to chill or completely take away other law-abiding
citizens’ protected opportunities for free speech.
Every citizen has the right to say NO to armed invasions of private
property. Without the sanctuary I provide for wild creatures in my
community, they would be mercilessly hunted, without hope of any refuge from
the slaughter. The Commonwealth has to be shown the futility of attempting
to help the killers muscle their way onto private land, over the legitimate
and constitutionally protected resistance of individual landowners.
My suit will help to save the lives of many wild creatures, in
addition to protecting (sometimes physically) those property owners who
exercise their free speech rights to say I DO NOT WANT KILLING ON MY GROUND.
I need the protection of a federal court to carry on the fight in my
community, in defense of my home, and in defense of the home which I provide
for wild creatures. I am at risk if I do not repair the damage to my
reputation and livelihood; I am at physical risk if the hunters are not made
to understand that further attacks on me could be dangerous to their
financial health, and will not be tolerated by a federal court with
jurisdiction over my challenge to the constitutionality of the harassment
C.A.S.H. urges you to contribute to this case and to ask other
organizations with far deeper pockets than ours to back Jan’s case, not only
for those who have been prevented from taking protective action for wildlife
by these laws, but for the sake of the wildlife who, as Jan said above, will
have no hope of any refuge should this unconstitutional law remain.
WE ASK THAT YOU CONTINUE
TO SEPARATELY CONTRIBUTE
TO THE C.A.S.H. LEGAL FUND
JAN HAAGENSON has so far received over $2,000
that has come in from the C.A.S.H. Legal Fund.
We thank our generous donors for their contributions.
Please send donations to:
C.A.S.H., P.O. Box 562, New Paltz, NY 12561,
or you can call in a credit card number to 845-256-1400,
or you can donate using PayPal at