San Diego

Injunction Lifts Temporary Ban on Gun Shows at Del Mar Fairgrounds

A judge issued a preliminary injunction Wednesday putting a pause on the Del Mar Fair Board's temporary ban on gun shows at the fairgrounds.

Federal District Court Judge Cathy Bencivengo's injunction prohibits the board from continuing its ban on the Crossroads of the West Gun Show that started on the first of this year.

The board voted in September to put the shows on hold until 2020 while it reviewed its policy on gun shows. The policy changes being considered included an all-out ban, a gun sale ban and an educational-only gun show.

The San Diego County Gun Owners PAC said it was unreasonable for the board to ban a gun show that's been going on for 30 years.

“Although the decision is not final, gun owners are happy with the judge's decision to stop bans on gun shows while the lawsuit makes its way through the courts. There is nothing reasonable about a total ban," PAC executive director Michael Schwartz said. "For over 30 years San Diego has enjoyed a professional, educational, legal, and responsible gun show at a publicly owned venue. It is unconscionable that a very few people would use the force of government to discriminate against fellow San Diegans simply because they dislike them for exercising their rights. The injunction shows that the judge agrees there is a valid and important case to be made on behalf of California gun owners.”

Activists against the gun show received support from then Governor-elect Gavin Newsom, who asked the board in charge of the Fairgrounds to keep gun shows off public land.

Supporters of the gun show, claim they are unfairly being painted in a negative light.

In February, State Assemblyman Todd Gloria, who serves the faigrounds' district, issued legislation that would ban the sale of guns and ammunition at the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Gloria believes gun shows just don’t belong there. Under Assembly Bill 893, the Agricultural Association would be prohibited from authorizing or allowing the sale of any firearm or ammunition on the property or the buildings that make up the Del Mar Fairgrounds.

Gloria called Judge Bencivengo's injunction dissapointing, and said the Del Mar Fair Board could make an appeal.

“While the ruling is disappointing, AB 893 will continue to move forward," Gloria said. "This injunction ignores the will of residents in the communities around the Del Mar Fairgrounds who have stated unequivocally that they do not want guns or ammunition sold on this public, state-owned property. We will continue to persist with our legislation to prohibit gun and ammunition sales on the fairgrounds and I hope the Del Mar Fair Board chooses to appeal this misguided decision.”

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