The Journey: Colorado State Supreme Court hears RMGO’s Standard Capacity Magazine Ban Case

By: Taylor D. Rhodes, RMGO Staff

DENVER, CO – Many people across the country believe Virginia is the first state that hysterically anti-gun politicians have focused on in order to launch overreaching gun control measures. That’s not the case. For more than six years, Rocky Mountain Gun Owners, Colorado’s leading gun-rights organization, has been combating the first of its kind Standard Capacity Magazine Ban in the Colorado courts.

Standard Capacity Magazine Ban Becomes Law, RMGO Steps Up

On March 20, 2013, House Bill 1224 was signed into law -- to ban the sale, possession, and transfer of so-called “high-capacity magazines.” RMGO urgently jumped into action and filed a lawsuit in a Denver District Court within weeks of HB 1224’s enactment, arguing that it explicitly infringes on Article II, § 13 of the Colorado Constitution. Legal experts claim Colorado’s Article II, § 13, should provide stronger protection to the rights of Coloradans than even the Second Amendment.

“Right to bear arms. The right of no person to keep and bear arms in defense of his home, person and property, or in aid of the civil power when thereto legally summoned, shall be called in question.” - Colorado’s Article II, § 13

The magazine ban suit was lost in district court, where Judge John Madden IV upheld the new law as a “reasonable exercise” of Colorado’s police power. The Colorado Court of Appeals affirmed in October of 2018, setting up RMGO’s appeal to the Colorado Supreme Court.

RMGO Gets a Date with State Supreme Court

On November 13, 2019, Colorado’s largest, no-compromise gun organization saw the suit to the end where the state’s highest court heard RMGO’s case. During the trial, attorneys for the state presented written testimony from anti-gun Attorney General Phil Weiser.

Weiser praised the 2013 magazine ban’s effectiveness in a downright false testament to the court despite FBI and CBI crime statistics showing the rate of violent crime is up nearly 25% since the so-called “high-capacity magazine ban” became law.

RMGO’s attorney, Barry Arrington, had much more ground to stand on in his testimony. He argued that since the U.S. Supreme Court established the right to bear arms as a fundamental right (District of Columbia v. Heller), the state has a more substantial burden to prove the magazine limit is needed and conveyed the State of Colorado could not meet that standard.

In a news conference outside the courtroom, RMGO’s Executive Director, Dudley Brown, had a few words for RMGO’s steadfast members, “Wow. I can’t believe this has come to an end. I want to thank every member and supporter who has donated and supported our efforts to repeal this unconstitutional law. We couldn’t have gotten this far without you.”

Rocky Mountain Gun Owners is expected to get a ruling from the high court in the spring of 2020 and RMGO counsel remains optimistic the decision will be in favor of the hundreds of thousands of gun owners in Colorado.

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