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December 1, 2011 at 10:19 AM

Seattle asks state Supreme Court to allow gun ban

The Seattle City Attorney’s Office has asked the state Supreme Court to reverse a recent appeals-court ruling that says the city can’t ban firearms in certain areas of parks, community centers and other city facilities where children are likely to be present.

Yesterday, attorneys with Orrick, Herrington & Sutcliffe, the firm representing the City of Seattle, filed a petition asking the court to review an Oct. 31 Court of Appeals decision.

The appeals-court ruling said that, except as expressly authorized by the Legislature, municipalities are prohibited from regulating the possession of firearms at city-owned park facilities open to the public, according to the City Attorney’s Office.

The decision upheld a 2010 ruling by a King County Superior Court judge, who initially heard the case brought by six people with concealed weapons permits who were turned away from city parks and facilities for carrying firearms. The firearms ban went into effect in 2009.

In the petition filed Wednesday, the lawyers asked the court “whether the State’s intent to fully occupy the field of firearms regulation abrogates the prerogatives of local governments throughout Washington to set conditions for the safe and secure use by visitors of parks properties that the local governments own.”

“Seattle did not attempt to ban firearms for all City property … just parks and playgrounds frequented by families with children,” City Attorney Pete Holmes said in a news release. “The notion that Seattle can’t protect their most vulnerable residents on the City’s own property is inimical to the principles of local autonomy.  Every Washingtonian should be alarmed that state law has been interpreted to prevent such reasonable common-sense local controls.”

Comments | More in General news, The Blotter | Topics: gun ban, parks, ruling

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