Margot Cleveland writes “Judge Roger Benitez’s opinion provides a perfect primer for Americans seeking to understand the law and the gun fallacies leftists push.“
On Friday, a federal judge struck down California’s assault weapon ban in Miller v. Bonta. In the nearly 100-page opinion, District Court Judge Roger Benitez dissected post-Heller Second Amendment jurisdiction, while scrutinizing the state’s claimed justification for banning ownership of so-called “assault weapons,” before enjoining enforcement of several sections of California’s Assault Weapons Control Act (AWCA). Yet for 30 days Judge Benitez also stayed the execution of the declaratory judgment and permanent injunction to allow the named defendant, California Attorney General Rob Bonta, to appeal.
In striking down California’s “assault weapon” ban, which criminalizes the possession of various semi-automatic weapons based on their appearance, features, or ability to hold a magazine with more than 10 rounds of ammunition, Judge Benitez conducted a thorough review of controlling Second Amendment precedent and analyzed the hefty evidentiary record. He began with Heller, in which the Supreme Court noted the Second Amendment’s guarantee of the right to bear arms extends to firearms commonly owned by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes, as opposed to weapons predominately used only in military settings.