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Effingham County judge issues temporary restraining order on enforcement of assault weapons legislation

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Effingham County Judge Joshua Morrison has issued a temporary restraining order on enforcement of House Bill 5471, also known as the Protect Illinois Communities Act, which bans the manufacture and sale of guns designated as assault weapons.

The ruling comes following a lawsuit filed by former Republican candidate for Illinois Attorney General Tom DeVore. DeVore represents Accuracy Firearms LLC of Effingham, as well as a number of additional stores and private gun owners. According to court records, the decision excludes just the listed defendants from enforcement immediately until further court action.

Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker issued this response regarding the decision:

"This decision is not surprising. Although disappointing, it is the initial result we've seen in many cases brought by plaintiffs whose goal is to advance ideology over public safety. We are well aware that this is only the first step in defending this important legislation. I remain confident that the courts will uphold the constitutionality of Illinois' law, which aligns with the eight other states with similar laws and was written in collaboration with lawmakers, advocates, and legal experts.

Illinoisans have a right to feel safe in their front yards, at school, while eating at bars and restaurants or celebrating with their family and friends. The Protect Illinois Communities Act takes weapons of war and mass destruction off the street while allowing law-abiding gun owners to retain their collections. I look forward to the next steps in this case and receiving the decision this case merits."

You can read the full text of the bill here.

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Collin Schopp is a reporter at WCBU. He joined the station in 2022.