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Los Angeles Looking into Ban on Large-Capacity Ammunition Clips

The sale and transfer of high-capacity clips is a crime in California, but people can still legally own them.

An M1 Garand 8-round clip, M14 20-round magazine, AR-15/M16 20- and 30-round magazines. Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.
An M1 Garand 8-round clip, M14 20-round magazine, AR-15/M16 20- and 30-round magazines. Photo courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Originally posted at 12:27 p.m. June 27, 2014. Edited with new details. 

A City Council committee directed its attorneys today to further revise a proposed ordinance that would ban large-capacity ammunition clips in Los Angeles to ensure the law will withstand legal challenges and to provide exceptions for gun hobbyists.

Two members of the council's Public Safety Committee voiced strong support for the proposal, saying such a ban is needed to help prevent deaths in the street and the "bloodshed of children."

Councilman Mike Bonin said gun violence has created an "epidemic of death and gun violence in this country" and he wants to do anything he can to prevent shootings. Bonin told his fellow committee members that he's received "a lot of emails opposing" the proposed law, but "I'm absolutely unmoved."

Bonin said shootings have become so commonplace that they are no longer top stories in the news.

"This is about preventing murder in our neighborhoods and preventing death in the streets and preventing the bloodshed of children," he said, pointing to the use of high-capacity magazines in the killings of five people at or near Santa Monica College last July and the killing of a TSA agent at Los Angeles International Airport last November.

The sale and transfer of high-capacity clips is a crime in California, but people can still legally own them.

According to the city's draft ordinance, more than half of mass-shooting incidents within the past three decades involved large-capacity magazines, including the Newtown, Conn., elementary school shooting massacre in December 2012, in which a gunman wielding a high-capacity assault weapon killed 26 people, including 20 children.

Councilman Mitch Englander, who heads the committee, agreed with Bonin, saying his family experienced gun violence resulting in murder.

But attorney Michael Hanna rejected the councilmen's arguments, calling them "extremely insulting" to law-abiding citizens who may own high-capacity magazines. Noting that the ordinance would be a misdemeanor, Hanna told the panel it's absurd to think the city can prevent a mass shooting with a misdemeanor, illustrating his points with an unloaded magazine.

After testifying, Hanna told a reporter that the proposed ban is the "stupidest idea I've heard."

If the proposed ban becomes law, Los Angeles would be following two Northern California cities that enacted bans on possessing large-capacity ammunition clips.

An initial version of the proposed Los Angeles ban was revised by the City Attorney's Office in an effort to mirror large-capacity magazine bans in San Francisco and Sunnyvale that have stood up to Second Amendment court challenges, Deputy City Attorney Brian Sottile said.

The Sunnyvale case is being appealed.

The revised Los Angeles proposal would make possessing large-capacity magazines a misdemeanor one year after the ordinance's adoption and give owners of the clips 60 days to surrender them, with several exceptions for law enforcement, museum collections and for magazines that hold 10 or less rounds of ammunition for firearms purchased before Jan. 1, 2000.

Critics of the Northern California bans have argued that millions of Americans legally own guns with high-capacity magazines and may need them at times for self-defense.

--City News Service


Richard Jonson June 28, 2014 at 12:28 PM
Don't these stupid retards have real work to do?
Alex White June 28, 2014 at 02:13 PM
@RJ...yeah, fleecing the public with their over-inflated salaries and astronomical perks appears to be their "real work." I thought banning the sale of ammunition was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought registering handguns was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought a 10 day waiting period was going to curb all that violent activity. I thought requiring gun locks was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought criminalizing "improper storage" of firearms at a personal residence was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought undergoing Criminal Background Checks was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought enacting tougher "use a firearm go to prison" laws was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought criminalizing the ownership or banning the ownership of certain "scary looking" guns was going to curb all that violent activity? I thought enacting Gang Injunctions were going to curb all that violent activity? I thought hiring more police was going to curb all that activity? What happened? Two more mediocre Political Rubes have gained a little power and have acquired a minor political voice. They feel compelled to use that power and voice-- and use it often--no matter how ineffective their methodologies are because not only do they like to hear themselves talk-- as any egomaniac politician does-- but they also understand that when it comes to apathetic and uninformed people they can maintain their well-compensated status as an LA Political Rube without much "real work."
Bill Wentz June 28, 2014 at 05:41 PM
tl;dr
Bradley Slim June 28, 2014 at 08:16 PM
lol , like anybody is going to turn them in. Just another way to make criminals out of law abiding folk.

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