Federal judge blocks enforcement of Illinois’ assault weapons ban

Challenges continue to Illinois' assault weapons ban.
Challenges continue to Illinois' assault weapons ban.(MGN)
Published: Apr. 28, 2023 at 10:49 PM CDT
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East St. Louis, IL (25News Now) - A U.S. District judge granted a preliminary injunction Friday blocking enforcement of Illinois’ assault weapons ban.

The ruling means the ban can’t be enforced until the court addresses the merits of the federal lawsuit filed by gun owners against top state officials. So, this is not the final resolution of the case.

The Protect Illinois Communities Act (PICA), signed by Democratic Gov. JB Pritzker, was the state government’s response to the mass shooting that killed seven people and injured dozens of other during Highland Park’s Fourth of July parade last summer.

Downstate lawyer Thomas DeVore, the defeated Republican candidate for Illinois Attorney General in November 2022, celebrated the ruling in a statement on his Facebook page.

DeVore said, “Pritzker’s gun ban is on hold statewide!!! Every law-abiding citizen can go buy what they want!! Let’s get busy!!!”

Judge Stephen McGlynn handed down Friday’s ruling. McGlynn has served in the Southern District of Illinois since 2020 after he was nominated by Republican President Donald Trump.

McGlynn wrote:

“Plaintiffs have satisfied their burden for a preliminary injunction. They have shown irreparable harm with no adequate remedy at law, a reasonable likelihood of success on the merits, that the public interest is in favor of the relief, and the balance of harm weighs in their favor.”

The judge said it is “not lost” on him that the Illinois Sheriff’s Association and some state prosecutors believe the weapons ban is unconstitutional and cannot in good conscience enforce the law.

McGlynn also said, “it does not appear that the legislature considered an individual’s right under the Second Amendment nor Supreme Court precedent.”

Gov. Pritzker and Attorney General Kwame Raoul, both Democrats, did not issue statements Friday about the ruling. They’re expected to appeal the injunction.