An amended complaint has been filed by the Second Amendment Foundation in its challenge of a section of New York’s “SAFE Act” relating to an arbitrary limit on the number of cartridges that may be loaded into a magazine, arguing that such a limit violates the Second Amendment.
SAF is joined by Long Island Firearms, LLC, the Shooters Committee on Political Education (SCOPE) of New York and seven individual plaintiffs, including a practicing physician. Defendants are Gov. Andrew Cuomo, and Joseph D’Amico, superintendent of the State Police.
The lawsuit, filed in U.S. District Court for the Northern District of New York, contends that the new law limits an individual citizen’s self-defense ability, especially if that person is physically disabled, by prohibiting more than seven rounds in a magazine, even if the magazine can hold eight, nine or ten cartridges.
“We have received numerous inquiries and concerns from members and supporters living in New York state about this new statute,” noted SAF Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Aside from the obvious Second Amendment problems this cartridge limit presents, making it a crime to load more than seven cartridges into a ten-round magazine, for example, is confusing to the point that it is almost entrapment.
“It’s not illegal to own an eight-, nine- or ten-round magazine,” he added, “but it is illegal under this new law to have more than seven rounds in such a magazine, except if a person is at a firing range. You can’t keep that many rounds in the magazine at home, or in a place of business, which simply defies logic unless the goal is to make paper criminals’ out of people just to disqualify them from being able to own a firearm.”
“It is patently absurd to assert that making criminals out of legally-licensed gun owners for loading the magazine or his/her registered firearm to its standard capacity, is somehow going to deter a criminal or make our communities safer in any way,” Stephen Aldstadt, SCOPE president observed. “The NY SAFE Act must be overturned.”
“Our members are concerned that this statute plays no bearing on law abiding citizens who have gone through rigorous background checks already,” added Steven Blair, president of Long Island Firearms, LLC.
Gottlieb said the complaint was amended to allow additional plaintiffs to join the action because people have been harmed in different ways by this Draconian new law.
The lawsuit notes that magazines holding ten or more rounds of ammunition are in common usage by law-abiding citizens for all kinds of purposes, including self-defense. It contends that there is not sufficient government interest to justify restricting gun owners from loading more than seven rounds in their otherwise lawful eight-, nine- or ten-round magazines.
“This law sets an arbitrary limit on the number of rounds a person may load into an otherwise legal magazine,” Gottlieb observed. “There is no rational explanation for this, other than to deliberately confuse the public.”