So much for that “nobody is coming to take your guns” line, says the Second Amendment Foundation.
The comment came as the organization filed a lawsuit Thursday against the Chicago suburb of Deerfield, Illinois, for adopting a new law that bans certain weapons and empowers authorities to confiscate and destroy them.
SAF seeks an order to block enforcement of the ban on so-called “assault weapons” and “large capacity magazines” adopted by the village’s board of trustees just days ago.
Joining SAF in the suit is the Illinois State Rifle Association and a private citizen, Daniel Easterday, who lives in town.
The lawsuit was filed in the 19th Judicial Circuit Court in Lake County. Plaintiffs are represented by Glen Ellyn attorney David Sigale.
The complaint points out a 2013 amended state statute declares “the regulation of the possession or ownership of assault weapons are exclusive powers and functions of this state.”
Further, it declares, “Any ordinance or regulation, or portion of that ordinance or regulation, that purports to regulate the possession or ownership of assault weapons in a manner that is inconsistent with this Act, shall be invalid.”
SAF founder Alan M. Gottlieb said his organization “moved swiftly to challenge this gun ban because it flies in the face of state law.”
“While the village is trying to disguise this as an amendment to an existing ordinance, it is, in fact, a new law that entirely bans possession of legally-owned semi-auto firearms, with no exception for guns previously owned, or any provision for self-defense,” he said.
The foundation warned in his statement: “The new ordinance also provides for confiscation and destruction of such firearms and their original capacity magazines. What is particularly outrageous about this new law is that it levies fines of up to $1,000 a day against anyone who refuses to turn in their gun and magazines or move them out of the village by the time the ordinance takes effect in June. This certainly puts the lie to claims by anti-gunners that ‘nobody is coming to take your guns.'”
The town defined the weapons it intends to destroy as “a semiautomatic rifle, pistol, or shotgun that has the capacity to accept more than ten rounds of ammunition plus another feature(s) defined in the ordinance.”
That includes the common AR-15 rifle.
“We are going to fight this ordinance, which clearly violates our member’s constitutional rights, and with the help of the NRA, I believe we can secure a victory for law-abiding gun owners in and around Deerfield,” he said.
Town officials claimed to have given police the “power to confiscate and destroy the weapons and magazines.”
The Supreme Court ruled in 2008 that Americans have a constitutional right to keep a handgun in their home for self-protection and extended those rights to the states in 2010.
“Every law-abiding villager of Deerfield has the right to protect themselves, their homes, and their loved ones with the firearm that best suits their needs,” said Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA-ILA. “The National Rifle Association is pleased to assist Gun Save Life in defense of this freedom.”