Indiana Governor Mike Pence [official website] signed into law HB 1048 [legislative materials] on Wednesday, allowing adults to carry a concealed weapon locked in vehicles on school property. The current law in Indiana makes it a felony for any gun permit holder to have a firearm in their car while they are on school property. A spokesperson for the governor said the aim of the bill [Indy Star report] is to allow parents to keep locked guns in their vehicles while they drop their children off at school or attend school events. The National Rifle Association (NRA) [advocacy website] supported the bill, arguing that it is necessary to protect Second Amendment [Cornell LII backgrounder] rights. The Indiana Association of Public School Superintendents [official website] opposed the bill stating that school safety should be the primary concern and questioned if lawmakers will take responsibility if a shooting occurs as a result. The lawmakers responded that guns are still outlawed in school buildings.
Following the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, a number of states enacted restrictive gun control laws, many of which have been litigated in federal court. In January a federal district court in Connecticut upheld [JURIST report] the constitutionality of the state’s new gun control law [JURIST report]. That same month a federal judge in Illinois struck down [JURIST report] part of Chicago’s gun ordinance banning the licensed sale of firearms in the city. Also in January a federal judge in New York upheld [JURIST report] most of state’s new gun control law [JURIST report], among the most restrictive in the country, but struck down a provision prohibiting owners to load more than seven rounds into a magazine. In May 2013 a group of Colorado County Sheriffs filed a federal law suit [JURIST report] challenging a series of gun control laws signed [JURIST report] into law in the aftermath of the mass shooting at a movie theater in Aurora, Colorado.