U.S. Appeals Court Blocks D.C. Law Restricting Gun Rights

A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday blocked a regulation in Washington, D.C., that limited the right to carry a handgun in public to people with a good reason for self-defense, handing a victory to gun rights advocates.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit's 2-1 ruling struck down the local government's third major attempt in 40 years to limit handgun rights in the U.S capital. The decision cited what it said was scant but clear guidance from the U.S. Supreme Court on the right to bear arms.

The District of Columbia may appeal the three-judge panel's ruling to the full appeals court, potentially a more favorable audience as seven of its 11 members were appointed by Democratic presidents. The three judges in Tuesday's ruling are Republican appointees.

Mayor Muriel Bowser did not say whether the city would appeal but noted in a statement that similar laws with concealed-carry requirements were in effect in some states.

Judge Thomas Griffith, writing the majority opinion, said constitutional challenges to gun laws "create peculiar puzzles for the courts," noting that the Supreme Court's first in-depth review "is younger than the first iPhone."

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