Gun Advocates in Sunnyvale, Calif. Resist Ban on High-Capacity Magazines

| by Allison Geller

Gun owners from Sunnyvale, California are resisting new legislation that prohibits high-capacity magazine possession.

The new law subjects owners of magazines holding more than 10 rounds of ammo in Sunnyvale to fines, jail time, or both. So far the legislation and a similar San Francisco law have survived legal scrutiny. The recently passed San Francisco measure will go into effect next month.

The Sunnyvale law was approved in November with 67 percent of the vote. As of Thursday, gun owners who possess a high-capacity magazine are now criminals.

"I've lived here in Sunnyvale for more than 40 years and I've never had so much as a parking ticket," 67-year-old Leonard Fyock told the San Jose Mercury News.

But if he refuses to turn over his ammo, Fyock could face a misdemeanor charge punishable by a $1,000 fine, six months in jail, or both.

"I just thought, 'Well, this doesn't look good,'" he said shortly before the ban took effect. "So my high-capacity magazines are already out of town.''

But according to Sunnyvale police, no one turned over their magazines to the Department of Public Safety. They could have sold them or destroyed them as an alternative, said police spokeswoman Jennifer Garnett, since “it is it is legally possible at this time to cite” people who turn them in.

Associate Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy rejected an NRA attempt to block the ban, KQED reports. The NRA represented five Sunnyvale residents who said the law violated their Second Amendment rights. That ruling upheld U.S. District Court Judge Ronald Whyte’s decision that owning high-capacity magazines was not central to the protections guaranteed by the Constitution.

Sources: Russia Today, San Jose Mercury News, KQED