Marengo Guns, Illinois State Rifle Association request injunction to stop enforcement of new gun ban

The business joins other gun stores, as well as organizations in lawsuit

Brad Bauch, a salesperson at Marengo Guns puts a AR-15 in a case Wednesday, Jan. 18, 2023, at Marengo Guns. The McHenry County gun shop is among a group of plaintiffs challenging the constitutionality of Illinois’ ban on semiautomatic weapons and large-capacity magazines that took effect last week.

A McHenry County gun shop is part of a group seeking to put a temporary halt to the new Illinois gun ban, the latest step in a federal lawsuit filed last week by the group challenging the law’s constitutionality.

Marengo Guns, along with the Illinois State Rifle Association, the Second Amendment Foundation, the Firearms Policy Coalition, a resident out of St. Clair County, and a Randolph County gun store, filed a request Thursday for a preliminary injunction that would halt the enforcement of the law for the plaintiffs while the case is pending.

Those involved in the case are trying to “prevent the irreparable harm that will result” from the new law, according to the filing. They argue based on previously decided court cases that their challenge to the law will likely succeed as the banned items are in common use.

Marengo Guns owner Dominic DeBock said Thursday they’ve had to remove more than one-third of his product from his shop. He’s hoping the lawsuit changes that.

“From a business standpoint, this is tremendously a huge burden we’ll have to get over,” he said. “And we don’t know if we’ll be able to do that.”

Injunction by James Norman on Scribd

The law, passed in early January, bans the sale of more than a hundred different kinds of semi-automatic weapons, as well as certain magazine capacities and firearms with different attachments.

It also requires residents who already own the weapons to register them.

The lawsuit names several defendants, including Attorney General Kwame Raoul, McHenry County State’s Attorney Patrick Kenneally, McHenry County Sheriff Robb Tadelman, as well as other state’s attorneys and sheriffs, according to the lawsuit.

While Tadelman and Kenneally are listed as defendants, neither have supported the law, with Tadelman saying earlier in the month he plans to not enforce the registry provision included in the law.

Kenneally, meanwhile, filed a lawsuit on Thursday as well, questioning the constitutionality of the law and requesting an injunction to put the law’s enforcement on hold in McHenry County.

The Marengo Guns lawsuit also argues the law is unconstitutional and violates the Second Amendment.

The ban was originally considered following several mass shootings, including one in Highland Park during the city’s Fourth of July parade, where seven people were killed and nearly 50 more injured.

The day the lawsuit was filed, Richard Pearson, executive director of the Illinois State Rifle Association, said other solutions exist that could help prevent another shooting like that one from occurring, including allowing the state to search juvenile records.

DeBock said he’s confident the lawsuit will succeed but is concerned at how long it might take. While he waits, he will not be able to sell the weapons listed in the new law.

“How many businesses have to close their doors and employees find new jobs before the court takes action?” DeBock said.

• Northwest Herald reporter Amanda Marrazzo and Capitol News Illinois contributed to this report.