Second Amendment advocates in the Commonwealth of the Northern Marina Islands (CNMI) are rejoicing. A federal judge just ruled the islands’ restrictions on gun ownership violated the Second Amendment.
The lawsuit was filed by Army Ranger veteran Paul Murphy, who served in Iraq and Afghanistan, after his guns were confiscated by CNMI’s Department of Public Safety. The confiscation was part of the Special Act for Firearms Enforcement, which imposed gun control measures on its citizens.
A couple months after Murphy’s semi-automatic rifle, a GLOCK 19 and some ammo were confiscated, he was issued a firearms identification license, allowing him to legally own and posses firearms in CNMI. According to court documents, Murphy claims he never had his guns reissued to him.
Because Murphy is a U.S. citizen and CNMI falls under the United States’ laws, suppressing the Second Amendment violates the Constitution:
“The Second Amendment enshrines an individual right to keep and bear arms for self-defense, such that laws prohibiting the possession of handguns by law-abiding citizens within their homes for self-defense violate that right,” Judge Ramona Mangola wrote. “No state shall make or enforce any law which shall abridge the privileges or immunities of citizens of the United States; nor shall any state deprive any person of life, liberty, or property, without due process of law; nor deny to any person within its jurisdiction the equal protection of the laws.”
Judge Mangola struck down the following aspects of CNMI’s restrictive gun control laws:
- A ban on assault weapons
- A ban on public carry
- A ban on transporting operable firearms
- Restrictions on long guns
- $1,000 excise tax on handguns in CNMI
- Requirement that all guns must be registered with the government
Judge Mangola also struck down parts of CNMI’s assault weapons ban that limited the following rifle features:
- A pistol grip under the weapon’s action
- A forward pistol grip
- A thumbhole stock
- A folding or telescoping stock
- A flare launcher
- A flash suppressor
This is the second time CNMI’s gun laws have been ruled unconstitutional. In March, the court ruled that CNMI’s ban on handguns for self-defense purposes violated the Second and Fourth Amendments.
Shall not be infringed, my friends.