Illinois High Court Says Gun Ban Near Parks Unconstitutional

Feb 1, 2018

The Illinois Supreme Court has ruled that a state law banning guns within 1,000 feet of public park violates a Second Amendment right to self-defense.

Thursday's decisive 7-0 ruling vacates the 2013 conviction of Julio Chairez for carrying a gun near a park in Aurora, west of Chicago. 

The 25-page opinion calls the law "a severe burden on the recognized...right of self-defense," including because it offers no exceptions for law-abiding citizens.

It notes Chicago has over 600 city parks, so a 1,000-foot restrictive zone would bar the possession of legal guns in vast areas. 

And it adds that - under such a law - "innocent behavior could swiftly be transformed into" a crime, including people living near parks simply walking from their houses to their cars carrying a legal gun.