A red flag law, a waiting period for gun purchases, licensing requirements, and numerous other gun controls did not prevent the July 4, 2022, Highland Park attack.
Mike Bloomberg’s Everytown for Gun Safety lists Illinois as the state with the sixth most stringent gun laws in the country.
Moreover, Gabby Giffords gun control group gives Illinois a grade of A- on gun control.
Illinois has a red flag law, a waiting period for gun purchases, gun owner licensing, domestic violence gun laws, “open carry regulations,” and numerous other gun controls.
The gun owner licensing is done via Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) cards. Only those with a FOID card can legally buy and possess a gun in Illinois and the process for acquiring a FOID card includes a background check.
The Illinois State Police listed the process for buying a gun in Illinois:
• Buyer must possess a valid FOID card.
• Buyer must verify local firearm ordinance requirements.
• Buyer must display valid FOID card to FFL prior to handling firearm.
• Buyer must complete Federal Form ATF 4473.
• FFL notifies the Illinois State Police (ISP), Firearms Services Bureau to perform
a background check in accordance with state and federal laws.
• FFL receives an “Approval” from ISP to transfer the firearm.
• Buyer must abide by the State of Illinois waiting period before taking possession
of the firearm. The waiting period for a long gun is 24 hours and 72 hours for a
• Upon taking possession of the firearm, the firearm must be unloaded and
enclosed in a case to transport.
Cook County has an “assault weapons” ban that also bans “high-capacity” magazines. In neighboring Lake County, the City of Highland Park has an “assault weapons” ban that also bans “large-capacity” magazines.
On December 7, 2015, the Chicago Tribune reported that the Supreme Court of the United States refused to hear a challenge against Highland Park’s “assault weapons” ban. The Tribune described SCOTUS’s refusal to hear the challenge as “a blow to the National Rifle Association and other pro-gun advocates.”
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