San Diego

San Diego Judge Blocks Ban on High-Capacity Gun Magazines

The law was set to take effect on Saturday

A San Diego-based federal judge has temporarily blocked a new state law that required the disposal of high-capacity gun magazines.

The law was set to take effect on Saturday.

U.S. District Judge Roger Benitez issued the stay, ruling that Prop 63 took away the Second Amendment rights of the gun owners. Voters approved Prop 63 in the November election.

Any magazine holding more than 10 rounds is considered high-capacity. Only federally licensed dealers can sell them. In California, only law enforcement can purchase high-capacity magazines.

Prop 63 is the first state law to make it illegal for a civilian to possess high capacity magazines.

"Criminals aren't going to follow the law so I don't see why this is going to prevent anything," said Matthew Sloan, a firearms sales associate.

"I don't know that high-capacity is really necessary," said former probation officer Charlotte Beer.

But proponents of the ban cite mass shootings, like the San Bernardino terrorist attack as a reason for the ban. High-capacity magazines were used in the December 2015 attack, killing 14 people.

"What's the point of having that? What are you going to do with it," pre-school educator Jennette Petrak asked.

National Rifle Association attorney Chuck Michel's firm argued against the ban and was granted a stay Thursday.

"There is no evidence a ban on these particular magazines would save one life," Michel said.

Michel added that there would have been a "massive display of civil disobedience" if the injunction had not been issued since so many gun owners were turning in their high-capacity magazines.

The magazine ban joins several other laws passed last year that has ended up in a gun control battle in the courts.

California Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom was one of the main proponents of Prop 63.

Thursday, he issued a statement that reads, in part,

"I am very confident that the will of California's voters to ban these devastating large capacity magazines will be upheld and supported by federal courts in the long run and consistently with those other federal court decisions."

Those who own high capacity magazines can hold on to them while the ban is argued in court.

It could take several months to resolve.

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