[JURIST] A judge for the US District Court of Southern California [official website] issued a preliminary injunction [order, PDF] on Friday to stop California from implementing a ban against high capacity gun magazines. In 2016 California citizens approved Proposition 63 [text, PDF], which prohibits the possession of firearm magazines that hold more than 10 rounds. Citizens who were already in legal possession of the magazines had four options [WP report]: remove them to another state, surrender them to a law enforcement agency, sell to a licensed firearm dealer or spend up to one year in jail. In his opinion, Judge Roger Benitez stated:
The Court does not lightly enjoin a state statute, even on a preliminary basis. However, just as the Court is mindful that a majority of California voters approved Proposition 63 and that the government has a legitimate interest in protecting the public from gun violence, it is equally mindful that the Constitution is a shield from the tyranny of the majority. Plaintiffs' entitlements to enjoy Second Amendment rights and just compensation are not eliminated simply because they possess "unpopular" magazines holding more than 10 rounds.Attorney General Xavier Becerra [official website] released a statement [press release] saying, "Restricting large capacity magazines and preventing them from ending up in the wrong hands is critical for the well-being of our communities."
California has been the center of much of the country's gun law controversies. In April the National Rifle Association (NRA) [advocacy website] filed the first complaint [JURIST report] in a planned series of challenges to new California gun control laws put in place following the San Bernardino attack. In February a federal judge ruled that gun rights advocates are allowed to publish personal information [JURIST report], such as addresses and telephone numbers, of legislators who voted in favor of California's recent gun control laws. The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit in December rejected a challenge [JURIST report] to California's 10-day waiting period for purchasing a gun. Also in December California's 5th District Court of Appeals reversed and remanded [JURIST report] a lower court ruling which rejected a challenge to a state law requiring gun microstamping. Last July California Governor Jerry Brown signed 20 bills into law, six of which were bills altering the gun laws [JURIST report] in the state