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Supreme Court Clarifies Domestic Violence Gun Laws

Supreme Court Releases Ruling On Challenge To City Of Chicago's Handgun Ban
Photo by Brendan Hoffman/Getty Images

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Supreme Court says a federal law barring people convicted of minor domestic violence offenses from possessing guns can be enforced even in states where no proof of physical force is required to support the domestic violence charge.

The justices on Wednesday reinstated charges against a Tennessee man who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor domestic assault in 2001. He was then charged in 2009 with illegal possession of a firearm. Lower courts threw out the gun charge because Tennessee law doesn’t require physical, or violent, force to have been used in misdemeanor domestic assault.

The Supreme Court reversed that decision in an opinion by Justice Sonia Sotomayor.

The Obama administration argued that the lower courts’ reading of the law would render it unenforceable in many states.


Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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