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City Of Los Angeles’ Magazine Confiscation Ordinance Heading To Mayor’s Office

July 31, 2015

In 2013, the Los Angeles City Council proposed an ordinance declaring magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition (so-called “large-capacity magazines”) a “public nuisance” subject to confiscation and destruction.  Though not directly prohibiting their possession, the initial proposal’s ultimate objective was to remove currently legal magazines from the hands of countless Los Angeles gun owners.  Emboldened by recent moves to flatly ban the possession of such magazine in San Francisco and Sunnyvale, however, Los Angeles City Attorney presented an amended ordinance in June 2014, banning “large-capacity magazine” within city limits and criminalizing the transportation of such magazines through the city.

Council members claim that their ban will protect citizens and that it closes an important loophole in the interest of public safety.  They fail to realize, however, that this type of action does not protect the average citizen from violence.  Those bent on criminally misusing firearms are exceedingly unlikely to be deterred by a misdemeanor law limiting their magazine capacity.

So while the amended ordinance cannot prevent violent crime or mass shootings, it does sadly limit the Second Amendment right of law-abiding gun owners to choose to use these magazines to defend themselves and their families.  As most gun owners already know, a magazine holding more than 10 rounds are standard equipment for many popular pistols and rifles.  And they are possessed by millions of law-abiding Americans for a variety of lawful purposes, including self-defense.  The City of Los Angeles’ magazine prohibition affects lawful gun owners’ ability to defend themselves, especially in situations potentially requiring more than 10 shots.

Further, there’s already a comprehensive network of laws at the state level that regulates the acquisition and possession of magazines over ten rounds.  Any attempt by local governments to play in that sandbox would impede the state’s comprehensive regulatory scheme, contradicting state law and doing real harm to good citizens as they travel about the state through cities with varying laws governing these items.  As such, the Los Angeles magazine ban is preempted by state law.

Nonetheless, on Tuesday, July 28, 2015, the City Council voted unanimously to adopt the amended, yet still useless, version and to send it to the Mayor for his approval, which the Mayor has indicated he is eager to do.  Please contact Mayor Garcetti today urging him not to sign this unproductive ordinance into law.  Contact the Mayor via email at mayor.garcetti@lacity.org or by phone at (213) 978-0600.

CRPA and our legal staff are already on the ground fighting to reverse this arbitrary measure on behalf of law-abiding gun owners who wish to exercise their right to possess these magazines for self-defense.  Should Mayor Garcetti sign the ban into law, there will be swift legal action against Los Angeles to halt its enforcement.

CRPA is in the fight.  Please support us in any way you can – by spreading the word and correcting the great amount of misinformation out there or by donating to help with the legal costs of fighting this injustice.  Thank you for your support.

In 2013, the Los Angeles City Council proposed an ordinance declaring magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition (so-called “large-capacity magazines”) a “public nuisance” subject to confiscation and destruction.  Though not directly prohibiting their possession, the initial proposal’s ultimate objective was to remove currently legal magazines from the hands of countless Los Angeles gun owners.  Emboldened by recent moves to flatly ban the possession of such magazine in San Francisco and Sunnyvale, however, Los Angeles City Attorney presented an amended ordinance in June 2014, banning “large-capacity magazine” within city limits and criminalizing the transportation of such magazines through the city.

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