Court of Appeals Upholds New Jersey Law Banning 15-Round Mags

A federal appeals court upheld New Jersey’s magazine-capacity-limit laws, arguing 2-1 that three 10-round magazines are just as good as two 15-rounders. They said that a magazine-capacity limit does not present a burden to self-defense.

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal favored the decision to limit gun owners to 10-round magazines. (Photo: Grewal)

Previously New Jersey residents had a magazine-capacity limit of 15 rounds, due to a law passed in 1990. The new law restricts gun owners to 10 rounds and they must modify, destroy or register any magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds.

The law makes an exemption for active-duty members of the military and police and retired law enforcement officers, who can own and carry handguns with 15-round magazines.

“New Jersey’s law reasonably fits the State’s interest in public safety and does not unconstitutionally burden the Second Amendment’s right to self-defense in the home,” said the court.

“The law also does not violate the Fifth Amendment’s Takings Clause because it does not require gun owners to surrender their magazines but instead allows them to retain modified magazines or register firearms that have magazines that cannot be modified,” it added.

“Finally, because retired law enforcement officers have training and experience that makes them different from ordinary citizens, the law’s exemption that permits them to possess magazines that can hold more than ten rounds does not violate the Fourteenth Amendment’s Equal Protection Clause,” the court argued.

See Also: New Jersey Governor Proposes $400 Carry Permits, $100 Firearm ID Cards, $50 Handgun Purchase Permits

Pro-gunners were not pleased with the ruling, naturally.

“This decision is plainly wrong and upholds New Jersey’s unconstitutional law turning one million honest citizens into felons for keeping property obtained legally that could be used for defending their lives,” said New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs’ executive director Scott Bach. “The decision will be further appealed.”

“Third Circuit with a terrible ruling,” said legal expert Adam Kraut. “I suspect there will be a request to have this reheard en banc.”

New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal celebrated the decision with a tweet. “For months, individuals have been challenging NJ’s limits on large capacity magazines—a sensible law to address mass shootings,” said Grewal. “Today, the court of appeals upheld the law. Big win for public safety and law enforcement safety.”

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About the author: Max Slowik is a writer with over a dozen years of experience and is a lifelong shooter. He has unwavering support for the Second Amendment and the human right to self-defense. His ambition is to follow Thomas Paine, as a journalist by profession and a propagandist by inclination.

{ 53 comments… add one }
  • Randy Shoemaker December 10, 2018, 4:29 pm

    Why are the democrat socialists aching for civil war? Don’t they realize what could could have to them? People will not obey a unconstitutional law.

  • Mike December 9, 2018, 5:53 pm

    So we learned this week about the California bar shooting that had a cop killed, was another cop that killed him. We had 2 weeks ago a shooting in a mall in AL and a cop shot the wrong guy IN THE BACK as he was running away.
    Now we see courts saying cops are more important than average citizens because they have training (see above paragraph), so they get to have unmodified guns. This makes me sick.

  • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 11:21 am

    Oh look, because of this new draconian(and stupid!) magazine restriction, crime in NJ has dropped 98%, suicide, mass-shootings, and murders are nearly erased.

    Believe that, and I’ll sell you some lakefront property on Mars.

  • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 10:58 am

    Does the term “retired police” include those involuntarily “retired,” i.e., fired?

  • Buster December 8, 2018, 10:45 am

    I love the arguments these politicians always use to support their anti-gun actions. They are never true and only work on those who do not understand the information involved. The AG says this will make police and the public safer from mass shootings – well first off, as pointed out by others, three 10 round mag equal two 15 round, are just as easily carried and change the total shooting time by about 1 to 2 seconds max. So Mr. AG, where is the increased safety there? Second, he says police haver more training than the public so they as safer to carry the larger capacity mag. OK, let see – What we are discussing here is round count, not shooting ability or judgement considerations, so where does ANY police training alter this effect? Mental stability can not be “trained” into someone and when it comes to mental stability, police officers, both active and retired, have a greater than 5 fold higher incidence of mental breakdown than the general public at large, so, statistically, police are a much greater threat of going on a killing spree than the general public. Stats would say we need to give them the Barney Fife bullet and the rest of us the large mags. Politicians know these claims are not true but most of the public do not know the facts and these claims sound good so the politicians continue to lie to them to garner support for their alternative agendas.

  • DaveGinOly December 8, 2018, 1:13 am

    If “three 10-round magazines are just as good as two 15-rounders,” then how does this law sensibly “address mass shootings”? Will not mass shooters just use three 10-round magazines instead of two 15-round mags?

    • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 10:53 am

      OMG! You’re throwing logic at the Progressive-Socialists? You should know better!

  • James December 7, 2018, 7:27 pm

    We are the only country in the world that has a Second Amendment.
    There has never been a government that banned it\’s own ARMED FORCES from \”Keeping and Bearing\” ARMS.
    Find one government in the history of humanity that felt a need to document a \”RIGHT\” for it\’s ARMED FORCES to possess ARMS.
    Oppressive Governments are ALWAYS banning the People\’S RIGHTS to arms.
    The claim that the Founding Fathers wrote the 2nd Amendment to give Our ARMED FORCES a \”right\” to keep and carry ARMS is S-T-U-P-I-D.
    The only reason for the Second Amendment is to clearly spell-out the GOD GIVEN RIGHT of INDIVIDUALS to keep & bear ARMS.
    The only reason for the BILL(list) of RIGHTS was to codify INDIVIDUALS\’ GOD GIVEN RIGHTS.
    Has there ever been a government that was not chock full of it\’s \”rights\” up to and including declaring itself to be the Lord God Almighty?! (Rome, Egypt, Israel,etc)
    Does the 1st Amendment mean the GOVERNMENT is allowed to give speeches? Try shutting up any Politician. But THEY would LOVE to shut YOU up, hence the FIRST Amendment.
    Anyone who tells you the 2nd Amendment applies to the Army or State Militia, is telling you they think you are STUPID.
    There has NEVER been a government that felt it had to codify it\’s army\’s/soldier\’s \”RIGHT\” to \”Keep and BEAR ARMS\” because there has NEVER been a government that refused to allow It\’s own soldiers to KEEP and BEAR ARMS!
    The Second Amendment was written for the People, like the other 9 Amendments in the Bill of Rights. This was confirmed by the SCOTUS in the DC vs Heller decision, where they stated that the \”People\” in the Second Amendment were the same \”People\” that are mentioned in the First and Fourth Amendment.
    The 2nd Amendment clearly codifies the “right of the PEOPLE to keep and bear arms”, and certainly not “the Militia”.
    Why would \”the Militia\”, a type of army manned by citizen-soldiers as opposed to full-time \”regulars\”, need a constitutional amendment to guarantee they have the right \”to keep and bear arms\”?
    Is there any specific statement anywhere in the Constitution that the army Congress is empowered to raise has the “right to keep and bear arms\”? Of course not. …………. That is assumed.
    the 2nd amendment,, specifies that the RIGHT to bear arms is the right of the people,, NOT the militia,,,, it is the people who will make up the militia,, but the right is not the right of a \”well regulated militia\” it is the right of the people, We the people were BORN WITH INALIENABLE RIGHTS, meaning they come from GOD.

    • Jack W. December 8, 2018, 8:18 am

      Please learn how to write proper English before posting. Where on earth did you go to school, or did you even graduate from the 8th grade? Your inappropriate and grammatically incorrect use of the \ makes your article and your viewpoint null and void and impossible to read or comprehend. Please take a 4th grade English course before posting again. Thank you!

    • Tar Heel Realist December 9, 2018, 7:44 am

      Proof your parents are actually brother and sister…

  • Dennis December 7, 2018, 6:21 pm

    Why retired law Enforcement, do they have more right to defend themselves with more rounds than any other N.J. resident. I think people in a state should be treated equal. The law changes are making honest people criminals, keep changing the rules and there will soon be a revolt!!

    • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 10:56 am

      These are the same jackasses that would whole-heartedly endorse former govt. officials keeping their security clearances, allowing them access to our nation’s restricted info..

    • Al December 8, 2018, 12:32 pm

      That’s what most law enforcement is taught. They are better then you or I the average joe. Know a bunch of law enforcement in the commie state of jerseystan. There answer has been our lives are more important and we have training.. yet they forget they bleed red.

  • Winston December 7, 2018, 5:32 pm

    The job-killing, open borders H5B visa program has brought these leftist, anti- Bill of Rights Indian aliens to the the US. Now you see another side of the result.

  • Cartmam December 7, 2018, 5:02 pm

    If it doesn’t impede self defence as the court says then police should operate with the exact same restrictions.

  • Da RueStir December 7, 2018, 4:45 pm

    Supremacy Clause in the Constitution basically states:
    “If there arises a conflict between local and State laws, the Constitution reigns supreme”.

    A Right is: ‘that which cannot be taken away’
    Unalienable is: ‘that which cannot be given away’
    Unalienable Rights are endowed, (a gift from ones creator) unto those who are NOT members of the ruling class, (We the People).
    Not merely privileges to be granted or revoked by the corporation(s) functioning as civic government(s).

    The Second Amendment is not about guns, it describes ” …that which we cannot be without, (necessary), to make without fear of loss, (security), to be without undue imposition, (free), as our condition of existence, (state).
    Nowhere does 2A define what is a weapon or proscribe limits on what can be called a weapon to be employed by a rapid reaction Well Regulated, (self-imposed adherence to the order of law, (not bandits)), Militia, (civilian army/navy), in pursuit of that condition of existence.

    ARMS (all weapons) are the tools of liberty to facilitate (keep (have in one’s passion)) and enable (bear (uses as lethal force)) to ensure that outcome.

    The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it does not define the enemy which We the People SHALL eventually have to bear arms against.
    Nowhere does it declare, bandit(s), government(s) or foreign invader(s) to be the force of undue imposition to be defeated.
    The true value of the Federalist Papers is that in the Founding Fathers writings they repeatedly make it quite clear who they believed the most dangerous enemy will inevitably be, tyrannical government!

  • Area 52 December 7, 2018, 1:48 pm

    States are falling one by one to more gun laws. I was hoping the NRA having Colonel North as their president would show some leadership. So far he has left me down. I hope he uses his title and name recognition to rally gun owners to block future laws. And by rally I don’t mean just the president’s column in the NRA magazine. He needs to get out there and start visiting states and making speeches and send a message to gun owners to get of their lazy butts. These “come and take them” comments are getting old and in effective. They are not going to come and take them, they are cutting off the supply and making the ones you own illegal and taking away second amendment rights for future generations.

  • Patrick Rourke December 7, 2018, 1:45 pm

    The 2A is not for self defense in the home! It is to defend against an over reaching government who can show up at your door with fully automatic weapons and 30 round magazines!

    • Da RueStir December 7, 2018, 4:48 pm

      Patrick,
      The beauty of the Second Amendment is that it does not define the enemy which We the People SHALL eventually have to bear arms against.
      Nowhere does it declare, bandit(s), government(s) or foreign invader(s) to be the force of undue imposition to be defeated.

      The true value of the Federalist Papers is that in the Founding Fathers writings they repeatedly make it quite clear who they believed the most dangerous enemy will inevitably be, tyrannical government!

  • Texcaledonia December 7, 2018, 12:24 pm

    Screw the NJ lefties who are trampling on the rights of its citizens….in the name of public safety. What a crock of horseshit. If the folks in NJ sit back and take this crap from their “government” then they can only wait for the next round of restrictions….in the name of public safety. This is typical of the Left. They impose restrictions in the name of safety when in reality their only motivation is control…control…control. If NJ accepts this then they have no one to blame but themselves. As to that rag head attorney general….hey buddy….you left your shit hole country behind. Dress, act and look like you belong here. Otherwise you’re just another “pretender” who lives here but can’t quite cut the ties to the old country….which was a shit hole.

    • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 11:11 am

      I have a friend in NJ who said nothing when NJ went to 15-rnd mags. Now that they further restricted mag capacity to 10, he’s still not complaining.

      It’s like Pastor Martin Niemoller during WW2; who said, “Then they came for me—and there was no one left to speak for me.”

  • S Patin December 7, 2018, 12:16 pm

    What’s next? 7 rounds? 3 rounds? Single shot only? That law, and the decisions upholding the law, are clearly wrong and are clearly an infringement of the 2A.

    • Tgen December 7, 2018, 3:06 pm

      7 or 5 or 3 rounds is next. Look at New York, 10 rounds was just too many, so went to 7. The leftist will never stop chipping away our rights until the population is disarmed.

    • deanbob December 7, 2018, 3:27 pm

      Some just can’t read or grasp 4 simple words – “shall not be infringed.”!

    • bob December 7, 2018, 9:40 pm

      These Communists need to pay attention to what is happening in France. When a large percentage of the civilians revolt against the government, the government has to cave. They are outnumbered, and there’s nothing they can do about it. Millions of people will win that fight. “Liberals” better open up their eyes.

    • ted December 9, 2018, 10:33 am

      NY tried that 7 round BS. The manufacturers said go screw yourself, we are not making 7 round mags just for NY. SO, NY was forced to rescind that part of the “SAFE” law.

  • Rick December 7, 2018, 12:16 pm

    All red blooded americans need to leave NJ now. Leave it to the FUCKING ragheads, like the Attorny General and the conniving socialistic left.

    • Stan d. Upnow December 8, 2018, 11:15 am

      No, stay & fight and turn it around!
      That is NOT a tactical retreat.

  • Colonialgirl December 7, 2018, 12:12 pm

    “arguing 2-1 “; For those who aren’t aware; THAT was TWO OBAMA appointees who are both ultra-liberal and the ONE dissent is a conservative who follows the Constitution. I BET a full court and the Supreme Court WILL over turn this asinine idiocy.

    • deanbob December 7, 2018, 3:29 pm

      I agree. However, in the process, someone must pay attorney and court costs. It may be time to bring back “loser pays”, even if one must wait for the SCOTUS to determine who the loser is.

  • Daniel A Ryan December 7, 2018, 11:15 am

    This is typical leftist logic to wedge the door open, so let me pose this using their own verbiage,,, if 3 10 round magazines are the same as 2 15 round magazines then the change in law accomplishes nothing, so why make the change in the first place?

  • Nick T December 7, 2018, 11:15 am

    This case, from the outset, was a complete disaster. The attorney’s who brought this case did so as if they wanted to loose.
    The problem is they’re following Heller, and they refuse to go beyond that faulty decision. Heller has allowed CA, CO, CT, MA, MD, NY, NJ to begin the inevitable disarmament of a free citizenry.
    The 2nd amendment is not the beginning and the end. It is simply a very small part of the overall DUTY that we are all required to perform. The 2nd was added to secure Article 1, Section 8, Cls. 15&16, and allow the good People to defend the country and the laws.
    The so-called pro-2nd community denies, disparages, and even refuses to perform the DUTY related to the most important part; “A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State…”

  • Alan December 7, 2018, 11:08 am

    Now that SCOTUS is definitely conservative, let’s take this decision (and all the other infringements) and let SCOTUS decide if any government entity has a right to pass infringement legislation.

  • Eric Holder December 7, 2018, 11:08 am

    If the new law, ban or restriction is as they argue essentially equal to the 1990 law and that 3 10 round magazines are equal to 2 15 round magazines then their own “logic” (Lol) does not weigh in their favor. There is not any reason to repeal and place a new law in.

    The people in New Jersey will comply. Why? Because they are known as “the law abiding gun owners”. Can not fight right? Oh yes you can, fight them in the New Jersey Courts.

    Just think if you win your victory will be to have 15 round magazines! LMAO.

    Okay got to go I have some full auto machine guns and drum magazines to send to Mexico. I asked them damn guys from ATF to come early today to help get this stuff shipped and Fedex is running far behind.

  • AL December 7, 2018, 10:59 am

    Look at the picture. They slowly will take ALL our weapons if they can. There is NO mention of America in the ed times because we destroy ourselves.

  • fee December 7, 2018, 10:37 am

    Flaw logic by judge on magazine capacity and self defense. Cops are trained, have body armor and chances of operating with back up need at minimum 15 round magazines before reloading when engaging a criminal. Read the number of rounds fired by them in a typical gun fight with one armed suspect. It is more than 15 shots. Contrast that with a homeowner who is usually alone, no body armor and less trained than a cop, and the courts expects him/her to engage with a pistol with only ten rounds before reloading. Sorry if trained and armored cops need at least 15 rounds to survive a gunfight, limiting gun owners to 10 rounds is a compromise of their ability to defend themselves.

  • Silverbullet December 7, 2018, 10:33 am

    When you vote you can Bitch . As for crying over laws not one criminal will ever abide by them. And turbin top , go back where you belong . Real American people live and love the USA and it’s freedoms in the constitution. Yes when they get taking one they will take more. No mass murders really they were bought and staged for stealing our constitutional rights. Yes it’s proven

  • crimsonfalcon07 December 7, 2018, 10:32 am

    If 30 ten round magazines are functionally similar to 2 15 round magazines, that logic seems to work both ways. What makes the 15 round magazines all of a sudden more horrible? Or, for that matter, what’s the difference between the 10 rounders and the 30 round standard capacity magazine? Anyone who knows anything about firearms knows that the practical difference is negligible, especially in a mass shooting situation full of soft targets. Reloads only matter when someone is shooting back.

  • John December 7, 2018, 9:34 am

    Good thing they did that! I’m so glad they passed the law banning large capacity magazines. I mean, I feel safer knowing that mass shootings will never happen again because all mass shooters follow the law EXACTLY.

    Oh wait… mass shooters don’t follow the law – so why the HECK would they follow a law on magazine size when they can easily order a dozen online, drive to any state that doesn’t have absurd laws or just obtain one on the black market.

    MORONS.

  • Bad Penguin December 7, 2018, 9:22 am

    This from a state that refuses to prosecute thugs for carrying illegal pistols and ammo but will prosecute a law abiding citizen the instant a law changes. Typical.

    And if no one in the state is allowed to own a firearm why does the Police department need to have heavily armed cops in full military combat gear?

  • Steve December 7, 2018, 9:12 am

    If 3 10-round magazines are as good as 2 15-round, how does that stop mass shooting incidents? Bad guys ( who of course will turn in their 15-rounders) can switch magazines too.

  • cawpin December 7, 2018, 8:59 am

    I wonder how this is going to play out. They claim they’re doing it for public safety but then, in this decision, say using three 10 round magazines is just at effective as using two 15 round magazines. So the magazine restriction doesn’t make a difference as far as the effectiveness of a mass shooter, therefore nullifying the claimed propose.

  • DEFENDER December 7, 2018, 8:42 am

    Anything I missed/need below?

    Hmm – I pray not, but:
    When they come for my/our guns,
    I have some definitions and thoughts they need to be aware of that we have here:

    “Class IV Armor – 7.62mm – Multi-Hit, Anti-Spall”
    Front, Back, Sides
    Gas Masks, +
    Radios
    3k + Rds – All calibers
    The “Compound” – Prepared Positions – Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta

    Moving – “Combat Accuracy” – No “Target” shooters here.
    9mm/223/556/308
    30rd mags
    Small Tactical Team + 2 Snipers

    “Highly”/+ Combat and Competition Trained
    Rain, sleet, snow, mud – don’t care – been there.
    Moving, prone, LH, RH, crawling, swinging, cover – been there.
    “Real” Fights – Been there

    They will, of course, eventually get me/us – BUT – It will cost them dearly.
    And it will have to be “Highly Trained SWAT” – at that.
    And they are going to need some RPG’s – at least.
    And at least a Squad or two.

    Here – Its going to “sound” like they took on the 3rd INF DIV 🙂

    Anything I missed?

    • Robert Mccallum December 7, 2018, 10:40 am

      I’m sure by now they are aware of who you are.. they would most likely just hit you from a drone and tell the media it was a gas explosion of some sort.. or it was from “ your “ explosives.. they control the media and lying is an art form to them.. but I wish you luck

  • Edgar December 7, 2018, 8:02 am

    What’s next ?……..cars that have horsepower that exceeds what NJ deems reasonable? You don’t need that 450 HP Corvette……or that 400 HP Charger. You must prove that the car now can only use the maximum allowed 300 HP that the state has decided is the maximum safe allowed limit on horsepower.

    This is a slippery slope that we should be carefully treading on. When Gov begins restricting LEGALLY possessed property for no reason……they are setting a dangerous precedent that we should all be concerned with. It may not immediately affect non-gun owners…but it sets up the Gov to decide what they believe is best for those who live within their state.
    This could easily apply to automobiles, your home, your choice of power for your home, your choice for fuel for your home, how you care for your privately owned land……etc, etc.
    this is NOT a gun owner issue only…..this restriction without basis can likely affect everyone else in the future in one way or another. Once the ruling stands unchallenged, it becomes more difficult to overcome.
    Everyone should be thinking about the Their own “Nightmare” scenario that the state could legislate without any basis…..other than some political or personal agenda.

    • Zdravko December 7, 2018, 10:26 am

      Very good points. The “progressives” know what’s best for us “sub-elites,” of course. We must be as relentless in opposing them as they are in trying to subvert our republic.

      • Edward Demain December 7, 2018, 11:57 am

        If you are not happy with NJ laws as I was 15 years ago, we welcome you in Arizona. I lived in NJ for 30 years and could not wait to leave.

        You can carry open, or concealed with no permit. If you have a CCW permit and want to buy a gun , yes, fill out the federal form show your permit, pay the man and leave with the weapon of your choice.
        Good Luck.

  • Dr Motown December 7, 2018, 7:19 am

    “Law enforcement officers have the training and experience?” LOL! I know cops who haven’t left the desk in 20 years and only fire their weapons at a range when they have to re-qualify…same for some of the military who have support/administrative jobs, not combat experience

  • Altoids December 7, 2018, 6:07 am

    New Jersey Attorney General Gurbir Grewal celebrated the decision with a tweet

    How do foreigners such as this end up in positions such of great power over Americans?

    Americans need to ask this question seriously. He may be a US Citizen, but he’s not an American.

    • cawpin December 7, 2018, 8:56 am

      You are less of an American than he is simply for making that statement.

      • WVinMM December 7, 2018, 10:12 am

        This guy is likely OTB from India, or at best a first generation American. And he remains an Indian communist. No surprise he finds himself employed as a NJ Democrat.

  • Steven December 7, 2018, 5:39 am

    Next, magazine capacities will be cut down to six. After that, it will be …………………………

  • Us citizen December 7, 2018, 5:06 am

    Of course the turbinator thinks it’s a great law! Civil war is coming folks. Keep treading on our constitutional rights.

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