Appeals Court Tosses Lawsuit Against Columbus Bump Stock Ban

Aug 2, 2019

Columbus leaders are celebrating an appeals court ruling that throws out a lawsuit against the city’s ban on bump stocks.

The 10th District Court of Appeals on Thursday ruled that two gun rights groups lacked standing to sue the city over the ordinance.

“We will continue to fight and prove that both the ban on bump stocks and our law that keeps guns out of the hands of domestic abusers are common-sense safety measures that are not preempted by state law,” Columbus City Attorney Zach Klein said in an emailed statement.

“We are pleased with the Appellate Court’s decision today, and are glad these protections will be in place for our community.”

The lawsuit against bump stocks, a gun accessory that allows semiautomatic weapons to shoot like automatic weapons, came from the Buckeye Firearms Association and Ohioans for Concealed Carry. When the lawsuits were filed in June 2018, Ohioans for Concealed Carry director Doug Deeken said that "these lawsuits are not about the bump stock per se, it's about the rule of law in Ohio. Because it's our belief that they're passing these laws as a test to see what they can get away with."

Thursday's ruling overturns a July 2018 decision from a Franklin County judge that said banning the sale of the devices was unconstitutional.

The bump stock ban came as part of a package of ordinances that also broadened the definition of domestic violence to block more offenders from buying guns, barred gun shops in residential neighborhoods, made it easier for the city to seize properties where felony gun offenses have occurred, and outlawed the sale of imitation guns to minors.

In December, the U.S. Justice Department announced a rule change that classifies bump stocks as "machine guns," outlawing their possession or sale.