Press Release

STATEMENT: Giffords Applauds Federal Court’s Decision to Uphold Massachusetts Ban on Assault Weapons

April 6, 2018  Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence (Giffords) applauded an order from U.S. District Court Judge William Young that upheld Massachusetts assault weapons ban. Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey successfully defended it from a gun lobby challenge.

“Giffords congratulates Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healey for the decisive victory her office achieved today in defeating the meritless gun-lobby challenge to the Massachusetts ban on assault weapons,” said Robyn Thomas, Executive Director of Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. “In upholding the assault weapon restrictions in their entirety, the federal court affirmed the fact that life-saving gun laws are entirely consistent with the constitution, and that protections from gun violence have always gone hand-in-hand with gun rights. Significantly, today’s decision joined the Fourth Circuit in holding that the Second Amendment does not extend to protect the civilian possession of military weapons of war.”

Following the shooting at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, AG Healey assessed the state’s assault weapons ban and found that gun manufacturers had worked their way around the statute to market duplicate versions of AR-15 and AK-47 firearms. Healy released a notice in July 2016 to gun manufacturers and licensed dealers that the state would carry out enforcement to stop the sale of the duplicate firearms.


For nearly 25 years, the legal experts at Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence have been fighting for a safer America by researching, drafting, and defending the laws, policies, and programs proven to save lives from gun violence.