Ninth Circuit Upholds California’s Law Prohibiting Large-Capacity Magazines; Everytown Law Responds
NEW YORK – Everytown Law, the litigation arm of Everytown for Gun Safety Support Fund, today released the following statement after the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit upheld California’s law prohibiting, with certain exceptions, large-capacity magazines, reversing an outlier 2019 decision written by Southern District of California Judge Roger Benitez. (A divided three-judge panel of the Ninth Circuit had previously upheld the district court’s ruling, but the Ninth Circuit vacated that 2-1 panel decision in February.)
“Today’s ruling is the latest recognition from the federal courts that reasonable gun safety laws are entirely consistent with the Second Amendment,” said Eric Tirschwell, executive director of Everytown Law. “This is great news for Californians and an important contribution to the centuries of legal precedent backing life-saving gun laws. As the majority recognized, the Constitution leaves states broad authority to take action to protect public safety.”
Everytown filed an amicus brief in support of California arguing that the state’s law is part of a longstanding history of identical and analogous prohibitions and furthers the state’s interest in reducing the lethality of gun violence both in the deadliest mass shootings and in daily gun violence. A concurring opinion written by Judge Berzon and joined by five other judges relied heavily on the analysis and arguments in Everytown’s brief.
As the official court summary explained:
The court noted that in the past half-century, large-capacity magazines have been used in about three-quarters of gun massacres with 10 or more deaths and in 100 percent of gun massacres with 20 or more deaths, and more than twice as many people have been killed or injured in mass shootings that involved a large-capacity magazine as compared with mass shootings that involved a smaller-capacity magazine. Accordingly, the ban on legal possession of large-capacity magazines reasonably supported California’s effort to reduce the devastating damage wrought by mass shootings.
Legal experts from Everytown Law are available for interviews.