STORY FROM: COVID-19 Litigation Report

Va. Judge: Governor Does Not Have Authority to Close Indoor Gun Ranges During COVID-19

LYNCHBURG, Va. — A Virginia judge has ruled that Governor Ralph Northam did not have the authority to close indoor shooting ranges during the COVID-19 pandemic, ruling that it infringes on citizens’ constitutional right to keep and bear arms.

In an April 28 opinion, Judge F., Patrick Yeatts of the Lynchburg County (Va.) Circuit Court explained that the governor’s power to close whole categories of businesses comes only from Virginia Code § 44-146.17, which is constrained by § 44-146.15(3) regarding the right to keep and bear arms.

The judge therefore issued a temporary injunction barring enforcement of Governor Northam’s order ...

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