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HomeNewsUS Judge Rules Bans of Guns in Post Offices Unconstitutional

US Judge Rules Bans of Guns in Post Offices Unconstitutional

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A federal judge in Florida issued a ruling on Friday declaring a U.S. law prohibiting individuals from possessing firearms in post offices as unconstitutional. The judge cited a landmark U.S. Supreme Court ruling from 2022 that expanded gun rights as the basis for this decision.

U.S. District Judge Kathryn Kimball Mizelle was appointed by former President Donald Trump and presided in Tampa. He arrived at this conclusion while dismissing a portion of an indictment that charged a postal worker with unlawfully possessing a firearm in a federal facility.

Judge Mizelle asserted that the charge against Emmanuel Ayala, which accused him of unlawfully possessing a firearm in a post office, infringed upon Ayala’s Second Amendment right to keep and bear arms. However, she argued that a comprehensive restriction on firearms possession in post offices goes against the historical American tradition of regulating firearms.

ALSO READ: Merrick Garland Says New Gun Laws Blocks Young People from Over 500 Gun Purchases

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Judge Mizelle opted not to dismiss a distinct charge related to forcibly resisting arrest. Both Ayala’s lawyer and a spokesperson from the U.S. Justice Department did not provide comments in response to requests.

This decision represents the most recent in a series of court rulings deeming gun restrictions unconstitutional, following the Supreme Court’s June 2022 ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, where the conservative-majority Court expanded gun rights.

The ruling in New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen marked the first acknowledgment that the Second Amendment safeguards an individual’s right to carry a handgun in public for self-defense. Additionally, the decision introduced a novel assessment criterion for firearms laws, stating that restrictions must align with the historical tradition of firearm regulation in the United States.

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Ayala, employed as a U.S. Postal Service truck driver in Tampa, possessed a concealed weapons permit and reportedly carried a Smith & Wesson 9mm handgun in a fanny pack for self-defense, according to his legal representatives.

The indictment against him stemmed from allegations that he brought the firearm onto Postal Service property in 2012 and evaded federal agents attempting to detain him. He faced charges under a statute that broadly prohibits the possession of a firearm in a federal facility, which includes post offices.

ALSO READ: These Guns Are Popular With the American Police Departments

Judge Mizelle pointed out that although post offices have been present since the nation’s founding, federal law did not prohibit the possession of guns in government buildings until 1964 and in post offices until 1972. She argued that there is no historical precedent dating back to the 1700s justifying such a ban.

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Moreover, Mizelle contended that granting the federal government the authority to restrict visitors from carrying guns into government facilities as a condition of entry would enable it to “abridge the right to bear arms by regulating it into practical non-existence.”

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