The Colorado Supreme Court unanimously voted today to uphold the large-capacity magazine ban enacted in 2013. The court rejected the arguments of the extreme gun rights organization Rocky Mountain Gun Owners. Colorado Ceasefire hails the ruling as an important step in upholding laws aimed at protecting Coloradans from gun violence.
In the court’s opinion, Justice Monica Marquez stated that evidence at trial “established that large-capacity magazines were used in some of the most horrific shootings in recent memory. These statistics have been deeply felt in Colorado, where (the magazines) played a lethal role in the Columbine and Aurora massacres.”
The primary impetus for the ban was the Aurora Theater massacre on July 20, 2012, where 70 people were wounded or killed in just 90 seconds. Four nights after the Aurora massacre, Ceasefire convened gun violence prevention leaders to weigh potential legislation in response to the shooting. High on the list was a ban on large-capacity magazines.
Over the months of August to December of 2012, stakeholders convened by Ceasefire debated potential proposals. The Sandy Hook massacre, which occurred the morning of the last stakeholder meeting, further emphasized the urgent need for the ban. The Sandy Hook shooter employed 30-round magazines to kill twenty first-graders and six educators.
Every year since the magazine ban became law, gun rights activists have introduced bills to repeal the ban, and all have failed.
Ceasefire honors Senator Rhonda Fields and former Senator Mary Hodge, who were primary sponsors of the bill, and former Senate President John Morse, former Senators Evie Hudak and Angela Giron, who lost their seats for supporting the ban.
Tom Mauser, Ceasefire spokesperson and father of Daniel Mauser, who was slain at Columbine, condemned the RMGO for binging the suit, saying “these extremists have shown absolutely no concern for lives lost to gun violence, choosing instead to advance an extremist view of the Second Amendment as conveying absolute rights.”
Eileen McCarron said “now it is time for all of Colorado’s gun shops to operate in a legal manner and to cease and desist the sale of these devices, whether outright or as ‘kits.’” As noted in oral arguments before the Colorado Supreme Court last November, Colorado’s Attorney General has deemed the “kits” are illegal. McCarron continued “it is also well past time for Colorado’s sheriffs to do their jobs to enforce this law.”