Kolbe v. Hogan, Jr., No. 14-1945 (4th Cir. 2017)Annotate this Case
Plaintiffs filed suit challenging the constitutionality of Maryland's Firearm Safety Act (FSA), Md. Code, Crim. Law 4-303(a). The district court awarded judgment to defendants, concluding that the FSA is constitutional. A divided three-judge panel of this court then remanded, directing that the district court apply the more restrictive standard of strict scrutiny to the FSA. The panel's decision was vacated in its entirety by the court's grant of rehearing en banc in this case. The court concluded that the banned assault weapons and large-capacity magazines are not protected by the Second Amendment. The court reasoned that it had no power to extend Second Amendment protection to the weapons of war that the District of Columbia v. Heller decision explicitly excluded from such coverage. Nevertheless, the court also found it prudent to rule that — even if the banned assault weapons and large-capacity magazines are somehow entitled to Second Amendment protection — the district court properly subjected the FSA to intermediate scrutiny and correctly upheld it as constitutional under that standard of review. Accordingly, the court affirmed the judgment.
This is a revision of a Previous Opinion originally issued on February 4, 2016.