California Appeals Judge’s Decision To Overturn 32-Year-Old Assault Weapons Ban

California Attorney General Rob Bonta announced Thursday that the state will appeal a recent ruling by a federal judge which overturned the state’s decades-long assault weapons ban.

Video Transcript

JEFF NGUYEN: Serene and Juan, the legal battle over assault weapons will likely have implications far beyond California. Six states along with the District of Columbia will keep an eye on it because they too have similar gun bans.

JULIE PAEZ: More than what I had to go through, it's what my family-- and how it affected my family.

JEFF NGUYEN: December 3rd, 2015, Julie Paez underwent 12 hours of surgery to save her life.

- Several down in the conferences.

JEFF NGUYEN: Paez was one of the victims of the mass shooting at the Inland Regional Center in San Bernardino, where 14 people died. The rampage was carried out with assault weapons.

JULIE PAEZ: It has had profound long-lasting effects on my children especially.

GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM: Is it San Bernardino? Is it Poway? You've got another 10 minutes? I can continue down that damn list.

JEFF NGUYEN: Today, Governor Gavin Newsom, along with California's attorney general, announced an appeal has been filed in response to a federal judge's ruling last week that overturned the state's 32-year-old ban on assault weapons like the AR-15.

GOV. GAVIN NEWSOM: Gun safety saves lives, period, full stop.

JEFF NGUYEN: Bob Templeton has operated at the crossroads of the West Gun Show in Orange County for 35 years. He says Second Amendment advocates are elated by Judge Roger Benitez's ruling because California has had some of the toughest gun laws in the country.

BOB TEMPLETON: We have felt like we've been underdogs in California for a number of years. This at least provides some daylight.

JEFF NGUYEN: In his ruling, the judge wrote like the Swiss Army knife, the popular AR-15 is a perfect combination of home defense weapon and homeland defense equipment.

BOB TEMPLETON: It's the most popular rifle saleswise in the country.

JEFF NGUYEN: Julie Paez was shot with an AR-15. She supports the right to bear arms, but she doesn't think military-style guns belong in the hands of civilians.

JULIE PAEZ: Because of all the damage done by the bullets. They don't come in and come out. I was shot twice, and they explode inside of you.

JEFF NGUYEN: The attorney general says that he will ask an appeals court to keep the current ban in place during the legal process to challenge Judge Benitez's ruling. We are live in Downtown Los Angeles, Jeff Nguyen, KCAL 9 News.

SERENE BRANSON: All right, Jeff. Thank you. Detectives released new--