On January 19, a federal judge in Chicago allowed NRA-supported plaintiffs to move ahead with a challenge to that city’s laws that ban anyone from possessing or carrying a handgun except in his or her home, and that ban possession or carriage of a long gun anywhere outside his or her home or place of business.
The case, Benson v. City of Chicago, challenges several of the anti-Second Amendment restrictions that were enacted days after the city’s handgun ban was struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court. Other issues contested in the case include the city’s ban on nearly all firearm transfers and on the operation of gun stores, as well as its law that allows each Chicago license holder to keep only one “assembled and operable” firearm within the home.
On the carry issue, the city had argued that this count of the complaint should be dismissed, claiming that there was no way the courts could provide relief because the same conduct was prohibited statewide by Illinois law anyway. In the ruling, Judge Edmond E. Chang of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Illinois pointed out that Chicago’s ordinance actually was more strict than state law: Illinois does allow people to possess and carry guns in their places of business, or in another person’s home.
Briefs on the remaining issues in the case will be filed between now and April.