A federal appeals court struck down restrictions on the placement and operation of gun ranges imposed by the city of Chicago as unconstitutional on Wednesday.
The ruling is the latest in Chicago’s fight with federal courts over the issue of allowing gun ranges within city limits. In 2011, a federal court struck down the city’s complete ban on gun ranges in Ezell v. City of Chicago. In response the city passed a new law which legalized ranges but forced them to be located in manufacturing districts—at least 100 feet apart from other gun ranges, at least 500 feet away from residential areas, schools, churches, and a number of other special exceptions. Those under 18 were also barred from being able to enter any range within city limits.
The same plaintiffs who defeated the city in 2011 then filed a new suit against the city claiming the restrictions were unconstitutional. The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit agreed on Wednesday, striking down all three restrictions in question.
In a ruling that described Chicago’s gun range law as an “elaborate scheme of regulations,” the court ordered the city to eliminate the regulations that were challenged.