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Federal appeals court tosses challenge to Cook County’s ban on assault weapons and large capacity magazines

Thursday, Aug 29, 2019 - Posted by Rich Miller

* Press release…

Today, the Seventh U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals announced its decision in the case Wilson v. Cook County, et al. handing the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office (CCSAO) a big win in their ongoing fight to protect residents from gun violence. The Illinois State Rifle Association backed a challenge to a long-standing Cook County ordinance banning the possession, use, or sale of assault weapons and large capacity magazines, claiming the regulation violated the Second Amendment. The CCSAO’s Civil Actions Bureau beat back the challenge, arguing that the ordinance furthered a substantial government interest in protecting Cook County residents from the threat of mass casualty posed by semi-automatic assault weapons and related accessories.

After learning of the court’s decision, Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx reaffirmed her commitment to public safety in Cook County.

“Assault weapons and large capacity magazines are designed to kill in mass and have no business on our streets,” said State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx. “Public safety is our top priority, and we were proud to defeat the gun lobby’s challenge in court. While we are pleased with today’s decision, we anticipate that this will be appealed to the Supreme Court. If it is, we will be ready.”

* From the decision

Two Cook County residents appeal the dismissal of their complaint, which raises a Second Amendment challenge to Cook County’s ban on assault rifles and large-capacity magazines. Less than five years ago, we upheld a materially indistinguishable ordinance against a Second Amendment challenge. See Friedman v. City of Highland Park, 784 F.3d 406 (7th Cir. 2015). The district court dismissed the plaintiffs’ complaint on the basis of Friedman. We agree with the district court that Friedman is controlling. Because the plaintiffs have not come forward with a compelling reason to revisit our previous decision, we affirm the judgment of the district court.

       

18 Comments
  1. - Demoralized - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 5:36 pm:

    Not a surprise. I am disappointed that the gun groups continue to oppose banning large capacity magazines. The guy in Ohio had a drum that could hold 100 rounds. There is no justification in this world for something like that


  2. - Nagidam - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 6:27 pm:

    Not a surprise ruling at all in light of the previous Highland Park decision. The intent I would guess is get a gun case to a suddenly conservative Supreme Court.


  3. - Amalia - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 6:40 pm:

    Dear U. S. Supreme Court: Scalia said in Heller that there could be more regulations. please keep this ban intact.


  4. - @misterjayem - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 6:49 pm:

    “We do not establish here a comprehensive approach to Second Amendment challenges, and we leave for other cases further development and re-finement of standards in this emerging area of the law.”

    And the challenges will go on and on and on and on…

    – MrJM


  5. - Nagidam - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 6:56 pm:

    @Amalia

    Heller said reasonable restrictions in the realm of mental health and felony conviction type issues. Not specific firearms. The Highland Park case and now this one are a challenge to specific firearm restrictions. That’s why I think this is all about getting to the Supreme Court.


  6. - RNUG - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 7:34 pm:

    I agree 100 is too much. But where do you draw the line in terms of large capacity? 10, 20, 30?

    Standard magazine size in a lot of pistols today, especially 9’s, is anywhere from 10 to 17.


  7. - Rasselas - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 8:07 pm:

    When Cook County first adopted its assault weapons ban, it was somewhat redundant of what was on track at the Federal level. (There is a tendency for the CC Board and the Chicago City Council to pile onto Federal laws to attach themselves to popular issues.)

    Now that the Federal ban has long expired, it’s kind of ‘neat’, to quote Ollie North, to see the CC Ordinance live on.


  8. - Amalia - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 9:46 pm:

    @Nagidam, there is a specific footnote in Heller which talks about the possibility that further restrictions can come. on guns.


  9. - Shall not be infringed - Thursday, Aug 29, 19 @ 10:48 pm:

    ♪♪♫ Knock, Knock, Knockin’ on SCOTUS door… ♪♪♫


  10. - Al - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 3:28 am:

    Anything over 20 is for extremists who want to “take our country back”.


  11. - Demoralized - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 8:42 am:

    RNUG

    I’m having a hard time finding justification for more than 10


  12. - Shall not be infringed - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 9:18 am:

    The problem with a limit on the number of rounds in a magazine is that once there is a limit, there’s a door to lower it later, making everyone who bought new magazines a new criminal. EG. New York.


  13. - @misterjayem - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 9:57 am:

    “The problem with a limit on the number of rounds in a magazine is that once there is a limit, there’s a door to lower it later, making everyone who bought new magazines a new criminal.”

    Yes.

    Of course.

    THAT’S the problem of high-capacity magazines.

    – MrJM


  14. - revvedup - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 10:31 am:

    The Seventh Circuit (which forced Illinois to allow concealed carry of handguns under the 2nd Amendment), continues to maintain the fiction that so-called “assault weapons” and high-capacity magazines fall magically outside its boundaries. A timely appeal is clearly warranted.


  15. - Last Bull Moose - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 10:51 am:

    Can a non-resident of Cook County legally transport locally banned weapons through Cook County?

    I use plugs to limit my shotgun magazine capacity when hunting. Is something similar available for pistols?

    My home defense weapon of choice is a 12 gauge shotgun. It is good at close range and won’t put neighbors in danger.


  16. - RNUG - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 11:18 am:

    == I’m having a hard time finding justification for more than 10 ==

    -demoralized-

    I tried a lot of semi pistols when I was shopping for a concealed carry semi a couple of years ago. I’m a big guy and because of my large hands, the sub-compacts with capacities of 6 to 10 just didn’t fit well in my hand. Finally found a compact that fit, it had a 17 as standard. I prefer the better grip and control.


  17. - RNUG - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 11:21 am:

    == My home defense weapon of choice is a 12 gauge shotgun. ==

    Racking a pump shotgun is a universal language home invaders understand …


  18. - JS Mill - Friday, Aug 30, 19 @ 11:25 am:

    =Standard magazine size in a lot of pistols today, especially 9’s, is anywhere from 10 to 17.=

    My .45 came with a six round mag, I purchased several other that had an 8 round capacity- all as a single stack. My ccl choice is also a .45 with a six round mag (add one in the pipe if you want 7). I never saw the need for 17 as statistically I am probably never going to need that.


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