A city of Portland ordinance that prohibits carrying loaded guns in public places does not violate a person’s right to bear arms, the Oregon Supreme Court has ruled
The decision in State and City of Portland v. Jonathan D. Christian, released Thursday, is believed to be the first time the state’s highest court has weighed in on the ordinance. The justices’ endorsement of the law’s constitutionality comes as communities across the country continue a heated debate over government regulations of firearms.
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The ruling, written by Justice Richard Baldwin for the unanimous court, carries implications for more than just Portland, said Harry Auerbach, Chief Deputy City Attorney for Portland. He said several local governments throughout Oregon have similar regulations.
“The ability of cities statewide to protect their citizens was an important consideration” for the court, he said, adding that the ruling bolsters efforts “to protect the safety of people on the streets of Portland by limiting the number of loaded firearms that are out there.”
The city ordinance prohibiting the carrying of loaded firearms in public has existed for decades, although the Portland City Council amended it in December 2010 to add a mandatory jail term of 30 days for violating the ordinance. That amendment was part of a package of new gun laws passed under former Mayor Sam Adams.
Read more at Oregon Live. By Helen Jung.