July 1 was the day that law-abiding Californians almost became criminals without leaving their homes or lifting a finger.
That’s when Proposition 63’s ban on the possession of high-capacity magazines, those that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition, was scheduled to go into effect.
To be clear, this law did not ban the sale or purchase of magazines with a capacity of more than 10 rounds, which has been illegal in California since 2000. Proposition 63 made it a crime simply to possess the magazines, which were legal when they were purchased and “grandfathered” as legal under the 2000 law.
Effective July 1, Proposition 63 required the owner of high-capacity magazines in California to sell them to a licensed dealer, move them out of state, turn them over to law enforcement, or become a criminal. The penalty? Up to $100 per magazine and a year in the county jail.
That was too much for a U.S. District Court in San Diego. Judge Roger Benitez agreed with the plaintiffs in a lawsuit challenging the magazine ban that they would suffer irrevocable harm unless the enforcement of the law was halted while the lawsuit went forward. He issued a preliminary injunction just days before the law was to take effect.
by Orange County Register Editorial Board