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The C.A.S.H. Courier

ARTICLE from the Winter 2008 Issue

We Urge You To Help Jan Haagensen Defeat The Hunter Harassment Statute In Pennsylvania

As a First Step toward Defeating Hunter Harassment in Other States

Jan Haagensen is determined to move forward with her anticipated federal suit to overturn the hunter harassment law which, as of this date, is still on the books in the state of Pennsylvania. Having succeeded in defending against the concocted criminal charges brought against her as the result of the Commonwealth’s unconstitutional, abusive use of this law, she wants to make sure it is never again used to punish and retaliate against landowners who are opposed to the slaughter of wildlife, and who are also opposed to the life-threatening gunplay indulged in by criminal trespassers on private property.

This is a perfect opportunity to reveal exactly how the hunter harassment law can be used as a weapon against innocent and law-abiding landowners so as to strip them of liberties guaranteed to them under the federal Constitution, such as the right to exclusive possession of their own property, their First Amendment rights of free speech, their rights to privacy and their right to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures.

The courts in general will not take up a challenge to the constitutionality of a statute unless concrete damage from its application can be shown by an individual citizen. Jan can show specific damage done to her by the Commonwealth’s attempt to prosecute her for numerous criminal offenses. Jan’s case demonstrates that this gross abuse of her rights was made possible only through deliberate use and application of the hunter harassment statute.

Jan had to spend thousands of dollars to hire a criminal defense lawyer, and she had to spend years in court getting rid of all false charges framed against her. She was forced to finance an appeal so that she could be completely vindicated by the courts. Her liberty interest in practicing her chosen profession was also threatened during the years she spent defending herself.

Jan is the best person to effect the removal of a dangerous, profoundly undemocratic and unconstitutional law which is a threat to law-abiding landowners. She wants to end any future use of this law by the government to force landowners to accept the invasion of their home ground by armed intruders, whose sole interest is in killing, and who have demonstrated their complete contempt for the lives and rights of other human beings.

Jan has both a moral and a legal right to provide wild creatures with a refuge from the slaughter. The state has no right to punish or harass her because she has made this decision. If she does succeed in her case against the harassment laws in Pennsylvania, she will be providing a blueprint to landowners in other states as to how they can proceed in protecting their fundamental civil liberties, and their rights in property. None of it will happen if she can not now go forward with her legal challenge to the constitutionality of the statute.

This is so much more than one woman’s fight for her constitutional rights. Jan’s case can point the way forward for countless landowners and law-abiding citizens who also wish to provide a refuge of safety for animals on their own property – and protect their own families from the danger of reckless hunters, as well.

Jan should not – and indeed, can not – bear the financial burden alone. Anyone who wishes to help Jan in this important fight for the animals — and for all of us — may contribute to the C.A.S.H. Legal Fund. Simply write “C.A.S.H. Legal Fund” on the note section of your check. Thank you!

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