Deerfield, Illinois Bans Assault Weapons, Will Fine Owners $1,000 Per Day Until They Surrender Them

Town officials say assault weapons are ‘not reasonably necessary to protect an individual’s right or self-defense.’

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An Illinois town has banned so-called “assault weapons” and promises to fine owners of such weapons $1,000 per day if they don’t turn them in, Buzzfeed is reporting.

Deerfield, Illinois, is a town of about 18,000 people, in the far northern suburbs of Chicago. And on Monday night, town officials enacted an ordinance decreeing that the community is better off without “assault weapons” within its borders.

Specifically, the law bans semiautomatic rifles with a fixed magazine and a capacity to fit more than 10 rounds of ammunition, as well as shotguns with revolving cylinders, among others. It also names certain types of banned weapons by name, including the AR-15, AK-47, High-Point Carbine, and similar guns.

And owners of such weapons will have until June 13 to give them up voluntarily. After that, they’ll be fined $1,000 per day.

“The possession, manufacture, and sale of assault weapons in the Village of Deerfield is not reasonably necessary to protect an individual’s right to self-defense or the preservation or efficiency of a well-regulated militia.”

The decision to enact the ordinance came in light of four recent mass shootings that, between them, claimed over 150 lives, according to the Chicago Tribune. Those four mass shootings are the Pulse Nightclub shooting in Orlando, which claimed 49 lives; the Las Vegas music festival shooting that left 58 dead; the mass shooting at the First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas, that killed 26 people; and the Valentine’s Day shooting 17 people at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

The law has already been promised a court challenge on constitutional grounds, according to WGN-TV (Chicago). Illinois-based Guns Save Life has promised to sue to stop implementation of the law, saying it violates Deerfield residents’ Second Amendment rights.

John Boch, president of Guns Save Life, promised a fight.

“We are going to fight this ordinance, which clearly violates our member’s constitutional rights.”

Boch and his group will be getting help from the National Rifle Association (NRA). In a statement, Chris W. Cox, executive director of NRA-ILA, said that his group will be joining Guns Save Life in their fight.

“Every law-abiding villager of Deerfield has the right to protect themselves, their homes, and their loved ones with the firearm that best suits their needs.”

Whether Deerfield’s ban will pass constitutional muster or be invalidated remains to be seen. However, another Chicago suburb — Highland Park, Illinois — passed an assault weapons ban in 2013. That ban was challenged by the Illinois State Rifle Association, according to the Chicago Tribune. However, the 7th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled the law constitutional, and the U.S. Supreme Court refused to take up the case, effectively allowing Highland Park’s ban to remain in place.