Columbus wants stricter gun laws to stay
By J.D. Davidson
The Center Square
Columbus officials won't back away from their fight to enact more restrictive gun laws than the state allows.
City Attorney Zach Klein filed a motion to dismiss the state’s challenge of ordinances dealing with gun storage, high-capacity magazines and illegal guns, all more restrictive than state law.
Klein’s motion comes a little more than two weeks after an appeals court lifted a temporary injunction that allowed those new laws to be enforced for the past nine months.
“We are seeking a ruling in our favor so that we can get back to doing the people’s work – enacting and enforcing commonsense measures that allow police and prosecutors to do their jobs and keep our kids and communities safe,” Klein said. “The city is ready to defend its right to decide what laws make sense for us here at the local level as we do our part to curb gun violence, get weapons out of the hands of individuals who have no regard for human lives or the rule of law, and improve public safety.”
The appeals court’s decision said the city failed to prove irreparable injury, harm to others or public interest when he sought the injunction against the state’s firearms uniformity law.
The injunction allowed the city to pass the new laws, including safe storage requirements, bans on high-capacity magazines and a provision to make it easier for police and prosecutors to target illegal guns on the streets.
Attorney General Dave Yost called the appeals court decision a win for the state that creates uniformity in gun legislation.
The case went back to the Franklin County Court of Common Pleas.
Klein said Thursday the people of Columbus want the city to address gun violence.
“Every day that we’re blocked from enforcing safe storage or other commonsense laws on the books makes our neighborhoods and communities less safe,” Klein said. “Residents are calling on us to do something to address gun violence. The law and the public are on our side, and we look forward to making our case to the Court so that we can give police and prosecutors the tools they need to uphold the law and hold accountable those who threaten public health and safety.”