Skip to comments.GUNS and AMMO: Why California gun owners may be breaking the law on July 1
Posted on 06/27/2017 7:13:27 AM PDT by johnk
Sweeping new gun laws passed last year by California voters and legislators require those with magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition to get rid of them by July 1.
The question is: How many of Californias 6 million-plus gun owners are actually going to comply, even though violators face potential jail time if theyre caught?
Talk to gun owners, retailers and pro-gun sheriffs across California and youll get something akin to an eye roll when theyre asked if gun owners are going to voluntarily part with their property because Democratic politicians and voters who favor gun control outnumber them and changed the law.
In conservative, pro-gun Redding this week, Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko joked that gun owners were lining the block to hand their magazines in to the sheriffs office (In reality, no one has turned one in). He said his deputies wont be aggressively hunting for large-capacity magazines starting next month.
Were not going to be knocking on anybodys door looking for them, Bosenko said. Were essentially making law-abiding citizens into criminals with this new law.
California banned the sale of high-capacity detachable magazines in 2000, but it remained legal to possess them, except in cities such as San Francisco, Oakland, Los Angeles and Sunnyvale that enacted local bans. That changed this fall when voters and lawmakers passed overlapping gun laws that require Californians, with limited exceptions, to give up any magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds. Sometimes incorrectly called clips, magazines are the part inserted into a gun that holds ammunition and can be quickly popped in and out for rapid reloading.
Gun-control advocates say getting rid of magazines that make shooters capable of firing a rapid volley of bullets in a matter of seconds will reduce threats to police and make it harder for gunmen to kill as many people in mass shootings.
Theres just a lot of data that shows that large-capacity magazines are particularly attractive to mass shooters and to individuals committing crimes against law enforcement, said Ari Freilich, staff attorney for the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, one the backers of Proposition 63, the gun-control initiative that California voters passed last fall. They do not have legitimate self-defense value.
In a pending lawsuit challenging the ban, Chuck Michel, a prominent gun-rights attorney in Long Beach, disagreed.
The reason for the popularity of these magazines is straightforward: In a confrontation with a violent attacker, having enough ammunition can be the difference between life and death, he wrote. Banning magazines over ten rounds is no more likely to reduce criminal abuse of guns than banning high horsepower engines is likely to reduce criminal abuse of automobiles.
Magazines sales were never tracked and owners werent required to register them, so its not clear how many remain in circulation. Gun rights advocates say there could be potentially hundreds of thousands of them in California gun owners homes.
Many types of handguns sold in California prior to 2000 came with detachable magazines that held more than 10 rounds. Large-capacity magazines also were widely collected and used by owners of semiautomatic rifles. These include the controversial but hugely popular AR-style rifles. Similar magazines also have long been popular with owners of Rugers 10/22, a ubiquitous .22 caliber rifle used by target shooters and small-game hunters nationwide.
The law provides no state funds to compensate owners for their magazines, and theres no way to track whether gun owners give them up.
The law does give California gun owners several options to get rid of their magazines, including moving them out of state, turning them into law enforcement, selling them to a licensed dealer or destroying them by July 1. Some gun shops also are offering to permanently modify magazines to make them legal.
Even the staunchest pro-gun sheriffs, including Bosenko, the Shasta County sheriff, say theyll be more than happy to tack a magazine-possession charge on to a drug dealers or a gang members rap sheet should deputies catch them with a high-capacity magazine.
RELATED STORIES FROM THE SACRAMENTO BEE California sheriffs can restrict concealed guns, court says California sheriffs can restrict concealed guns, court says This is one more thing we can add to their charges, absolutely, said Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims, an opponent of the law.
Voluntary compliance among otherwise law-abiding gun owners is another matter.
California cities with local ordinances havent had very many gun owners hand magazines in to police, though officers have removed some from circulation during the course of their investigations. The Los Angeles Police Department, for instance, seized nearly 9,000 magazines since it enacted a ban in 2015. Almost of all those magazines came from a cache police found inside a home of a gun collector who died in 2015. The department said it doesnt track how many citizens voluntarily turned theirs in.
As of late last year, the City of Sunnyvale had six cases in which people handed in their magazines since the city enacted its ordinance in 2013, said Capt. Shawn Ahearn.
Adam Winkler, a professor at UCLA School of Law who writes about Second Amendment issues, said gun owners ignore local ordinances banning magazines, a trend he expects to continue with a statewide ban.
We see no compliance from gun owners, he said. As best as we can tell, no gun owners are giving up their high capacity magazines or selling them out of state.
Gun control advocates such as Freilich said that because theres no way to track magazines, gun owners living in cities with bans could have been getting rid of them through other means.
But Second Amendment advocates say thats highly unlikely. They say gun owners just became more discrete.
Why would you (get rid of them)? said Christopher Lapinski, operations manager of Last Stand Tactical on Florin Road in Sacramento. You have your Fourth Amendment, which is the right to due process. You cant just take something away from somebody that they own without violating the Fourth Amendment.
Some gun owners say theyre hanging on to their magazines in the hopes pending court challenges will block the ban. They also hope the federal government will become friendlier toward gun owners under the Trump Administration.
We think that we will be successful in the long run, said Sam Paredes, executor director of Gun Owners of California.
A federal judge in San Diego is expected to decide whether to issue an injunction blocking the ban before July 1. A federal judge in Sacramento recently declined to issue a temporary restraining order in a similar case.
Freilich said that even if the San Diego judge blocks the ban, hes optimistic gun control-advocates will win on appeal, since numerous courts have sided with states and local governments that have enacted similar restrictions.
(Courts) have consistently found (high-capacity magazines) are properly considered dangerous and unusual weapons, Freilich said. They are weapons of war that do not receive Second Amendment protections.
The magazine ban isnt the only pending law Californias gun owners face under the new gun regulations.
Starting in January, Californians who want to buy ammunition online or through catalogs will have to ship their purchases through a licensed dealer. In July 2019, ammunition buyers will have to undergo background checks at retailers. Under the existing rules, anyone age 18 or older (21 or older for handguns) can buy ammunition without a background check, and sellers need no special training or license.
Many California gun owners say they are stocking up on ammunition in advance of the restrictions, which they fear will lead to shortages, especially for rural shooters and hunters who have limited shopping options. Some had feared ammunition retailers such as Walmart would get out of the ammunition business rather than go through with the new licensing process.
But Walmart spokesman Charles Crowson said Wednesday the company was in the process of updating its systems and processes to comply with the law.
National ammunition sales have steadied since the Trump administration took office, but its a different story in California, said Alan Davis, a spokesman for the Wideners.com, an online ammunition retailer based in Tennessee.
If you consider the percent of our overall orders that normally ship to California, the state is up about 50 percent relative to the country as a whole, Davis said in an email.
Some of the states largest cities including Sacramento, San Francisco, Oakland and Los Angeles already impose restrictions on mail-order ammunition sales.
At this point they are domestic enemies of the Constitution and citizens of the republic of the United States.
Sacramento BEE link from above article:
Why California gun owners may be breaking the law on July 1
I also found this concerning the issue.
BREAKING: Gun Owners FORCED To Forfeit Or Go To Jail After What Dems Just Snuck In Overnight
Someone needs to volunteer to be the test case to go to the supreme court, as Scopes volunteered for the monkey trial in 1925.
The consequences here will be much more extreme, especially in the interim. But the right volunteer, with the right connections and the right financial backing should be able to do ok all the way to a supreme court vindication or a Trump pardon.
If Connecticut is any sign, and it is an important sign, They will comply whole heartedly.
I would be hopeful for a Trump interaction here, but Trump has shown no signs of honoring his 2nd amendment promises.
“Did you really think we want those laws observed?” said Dr. Ferris. “We want them to be broken. You’d better get it straight that it’s not a bunch of boy scouts you’re up against... We’re after power and we mean it. . . There’s no way to rule innocent men. The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren’t enough criminals one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws. Who wants a nation of law-abiding citizens? What’s there in that for anyone? But just pass the kind of laws that can neither be observed nor enforced or objectively interpreted and you create a nation of law-breakers and then you cash in on guilt. Now that’s the system, Mr. Reardon, that’s the game, and once you understand it, you’ll be much easier to deal with.”
“Weapons of war” are exactly what the Second Amendment protects.
the California does exist.. the problem is they live in Utah, Nevada and Arizona.
The whole concept of these magazines being “high capacity” is pretty wacked. I can shoot three 12 gauge .00 buckshot rounds in less than 2 seconds with a pump action shotgun. Each shotgun shell I fire contains 9 separate 30 caliber rounds. Thus, in less than two seconds I can shoot 27 30 caliber rounds, each round being larger than a round from an AR 15. How long does it take to empty a 30 round magazine on an AR 15? A LOT longer than a second and a half. So, which is higher capacity? Which sends out more lead quicker?
Seems what's good for the goose is also good for the gander ...
Is California still California or is it Mexifornia now? Is it still a state? Not for long at this rate if so...
It (the political class) acts like it’s separate from these United States and can do whatever it wants; including trampling on the Bill of Rights and the US Constitution. We all know how dems ‘can’t understand normal thinking’.
As a believer in states rights states should be able to make laws as the people call for but not go against our basic rights; both written and God given. The thing is the people are not calling for these draconian ant-gun laws; just the extreme leftist political class who likely have armed guards near them at all times. Hypocrites.
I agree; all these highly constricting and anti-freedom laws must be fought all the way to the Supreme Court if necessary. Hopefully we will soon have a “normal thinking” majority on the bench. I’d like to see 6-3 or 7-2 so America doesn’t fall into that cesspool called liberalism or leftism.
The California CONSERVATIVE does exist... That’ll do me right for walking and typing at the same time.
What if I had magazines buried in a storage unit in California and I currently lived out of state...would I have to travel back to California and dig through all my possessions to get rid of the 'contraband'?
This law will stop exactly zero mass shootings.
Cops won’t be knocking on your door to check for illegal magazines.
A much more likely scenario is if the cops ever arrive at your house on a “domestic dispute” call, they will be told by the angry woman in your life that “he has illegal mags in the bedroom closet on the top shelf”. They then take you away, while she cleans out your residence.
Don’t assume that you will never, ever have an angry, vengeful woman in your home.
There is NO point in living in California. Get out while you can!
..... So, which is higher capacity? Which sends out more lead quicker?....
Not a lot of thought goes into gun control except for “Tightening” the laws.
State Attorney General: Xavier Becerra
Secretary of State: Alex Padilla
Senate President Pro-tem: Kevin de Leon
Speaker of the Assembly: Antonio Rendon
Assembly Majority Leader: Ricardo Lara
Other then the Governor and the Lieutenant Governor, all the major officeholders are Mexican.
Note that I don't use "Mexican-American" because there's nothing "American" about them.
Two of them can credibly have their "citizenship" questioned: de Leon and Lara. Both are the children of illegals. Proud of it too.
No adjudication of the status of illegals has ever taken place. No credible legal scholar believes they would prevail in their assertion of citizenship.
So why are they making laws that strip Americans of their rights?
Here's an example:
“Someone needs to volunteer to be the test case to go to the supreme court, as Scopes volunteered for the monkey trial in 1925.”
The ACLU actively advertised for more than a year, Scopes answered the ad.
That’s because he’s gay.
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