SEATTLE, WA – A King County Superior Court judge has ruled in favor of a lawsuit filed by the Second Amendment Foundation and National Rifle Association, striking down a ban on guns in city parks because it violates Washington State’s long-standing preemption statute.

Judge Catherine Shaffer ruled from the bench that the gun ban, adopted under former Mayor Greg Nickels, violates Washington’s law, which placed sole authority for regulating firearms in the hands of the State Legislature. That law was adopted in 1983 and amended in 1985, and has served as a model for similar laws across the country.

SAF and NRA were joined in the lawsuit by the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms, the Washington Arms Collectors and five individual plaintiffs.

“This is a great victory for the rule of law and Washington citizens,” said SAF Executive Vice President Alan M. Gottlieb. “Greg Nickels was so blinded by his personal hatred for firearms owners and his own arrogance that he imagined the city under his control could simply ignore state law. That arrogance cost Nickels his job last year. We repeatedly warned him not to push a gun ban, but he refused to listen.

“It is also a victory for the Legislature,” he observed, “because this case affirms the intent of lawmakers in 1983 to prevent cities like Seattle from creating a nightmare patchwork of conflicting and confusing firearms regulations. The ruling solidifies the legislature’s authority and sends a message to city and county governments to stop meddling with the rights of Washington citizens.”

Gottlieb suggested a review of local ordinances may now be in order, so that city and county governments can be compelled to remove old gun regulations or face legal consequences.

“This ruling puts anti-gun local officials on notice that legally-armed citizens have rights, too,” Gottlieb stated.