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Legal arm of Rocky Mountain Gun Owners is challenging Colorado gun magazine law

RMGO previously sued over this law on a state level but the Colorado Supreme Court ruled against them.

DENVER — A week after Loveland-based Rocky Mountain Gun Owners (RMGO) won a temporary restraining order that puts gun ordinances in the town of Superior on pause, the legal arm of the gun rights group is going after a Colorado state law.

The National Foundation for Gun Rights filed a lawsuit in federal court challenging the 2013 ban on "high-capacity" gun magazines.

RMGO previously sued over this law on a state level, saying it violated the right to bear arms under Colorado's Constitution. The Colorado Supreme Court ruled in 2020 that it is constitutional.

Now, with a staunchly conservative U.S. Supreme Court majority, the group wants to give it another try by switching focus from the state Constitution to the Second Amendment.

"Given the new landscape of the court system, given the new ruling written by Clarence Thomas, it gives us a very good path to victory," Taylor Rhodes, the executive director of RMGO, told 9NEWS.

Last month, the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a gun law in New York that restricted carrying a concealed handgun outside the home. Rhodes credits the New York State Rifle & Pistol Association, Inc. v. Bruen decision for giving them a leg up this time.

"Since the Bruen decision was ruled on a handful of weeks ago, it has given gun owners a four-ton wrecking ball to go after unconstitutional gun laws," he said.

The National Foundation for Gun Rights and RMGO will finance this case. Rhodes said the money will come from members.

In 2013, one year after the Aurora theater shooting, Colorado's Democrat-controlled legislature passed a number of gun reform bills, including House Bill 13-1224, which banned the sale and transfer of magazines that hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition. Then-Gov. John Hickenlooper signed the bill into law. It took effect July 1, 2013.

As 9NEWS has previously reported, gun shops have consistently found ways to get around it the ban.

RELATED: Restraining order blocking Superior's gun laws doesn't apply to neighboring cities

RELATED: Colorado's ban on large-capacity gun magazines ruled constitutional

RMGO's case against Superior is also in federal court. The group is challenging two of the town's new gun rules.

One part of the ordinance banned "illegal weapons." Another part bans certain assault weapons.

The ordinance defines "illegal weapons" as:

  • Assault weapon
  • Large-capacity magazine (holding more than 10 rounds)
  • Rapid-fire trigger activator
  • Blackjack
  • Gas gun
  • Metallic knuckles
  • Gravity knife
  • Switchblade knife

The ordinance also defines assault weapons as most "semi-automatic center-fire" rifles and pistols.

It spells out how assault weapons can be legally kept if owned by July 1, 2022, and if the person obtains a certificate to own the weapon by Dec. 31, 2022.

However, if a person inherits an assault weapon, they will have to make it inoperable, turn it in or get it out of the town of Superior.

Superior approved their new rules at the same time neighboring municipalities -- Boulder, Lafayette and Louisville -- passed similar gun regulations of their own.

The goal was to create similar laws across Boulder County.

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