Federal judge rules Minnesota's age limit for carrying handguns unconstitutional

The decision would allow 18- to 20-year-olds to obtain a permit to carry a handgun in public


Max Whittaker, New York Times

A federal judge has moved to strike down the Minnesota law barring 18- to 20-year-olds from obtaining permits to carry handguns in public.

The decision, released Friday, comes nearly two years after three young adults teamed up with three gun-rights advocacy groups to file a lawsuit against former Public Safety Commissioner John Harrington and the sheriffs of the plaintiffs' respective counties - Douglas, Mille Lacs and Washington - arguing that Minnesota's age restrictions violate their Second Amendment right to bear arms.

In a 50-page order, U.S. District Judge Katherine Menendez ruled for the plaintiffs and wrote that her decision was driven by a ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court last June. But she also expressed concerns about that standard, which requires governments limiting gun rights to show that their laws are "consistent with this Nation's historical tradition of firearms regulation."



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