This past week the United State Supreme Court ruled the ban on private firearms within Chicago violates the 2nd Amendment right to bear arms. Now, local officials are struggling to find ways to control firearm ownership in a city torn apart by homicide and violence.
The High Court ruled that the 2nd Amendment left localities no room to completely withdraw a person’s right to own a firearm, negating the 28 year ban Chicago had in place. Although the ban was only sporadically enforced, it meant law abiding citizens could not get a permit to own a gun. If they wanted a firearm-they had to possess it illegally.
While the court stated that localities could still maintain “reasonable gun control measures” an all out ban is unacceptable. So this week, city leaders in Chicago began discussing what measures could be used. According to the Wall Street Journal, everything from requiring liability insurance, criminal background checks, and firearms training is being considered.
Chicago is in the throes of a violent year, one to top last year for certain. Just a few weekends ago the city experienced 50 shootings and 7 murders. In one weekend.
The murder rate in Chicago is higher than New York City, whose rate is only 1/3 that of Chicago. Los Angeles’ rate is 2/3 as large as Chicago’s, making this city in particular need of something to control the violence.
Critics of the ban, however, state that this violence was going on while the ban was in place, proof they state that is was ineffective. Others who live in neighborhoods where gun violence is prevalent welcome new gun control measures that may positively impact the communities.
Gun control is a hot button issue whether you are in Chicago or the smaller communities of rural Illinois. A balance between the 2nd Amendment rights and states’ ability to regulate that right has always been a point of contention. While the new ruling from the Supreme Court does clarify some things, it will no doubt lead to new questions as well.
Now and likely long after the laws change, however, there will be a multitude of gun laws on the books. There are numerous ways in which you can be charged with a firearms offense in the state of Illinois, no matter which municipality you live in.
Whether you are charged with possessing a banned firearm or other criminal charge, contact our attorneys to discuss the details of your case.