The 10 States That Have Banned Assault-Style Firearms

The 10 States That Have Banned Assault-Style Firearms

September 29, 2023

Earlier this year, Washington became the 10th state to impose meaningful restrictions on assault-style firearms. The new law prohibits the sale, manufacture, import, and distribution of certain assault-style rifles, pistols, and shotguns. Notably, however, the new law does not explicitly ban possession of assault weapons, and also allows Washington residents to legally inherent them, or sell them back to a federally licensed firearm dealer.

Though these new restrictions have been challenged by gun rights advocates multiple times in court, attempts to block their implementation have been struck down.

As is the case in states with similar, and often more prohibitive laws, the new law in Washington applies to dozens of specific firearm models, as well as those with any one of a long list of features – including semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines that have pistol grip, a folding stock, a barrel shroud, or a flash suppressor. The law also bans semiautomatic pistols with detachable magazines that have a second hand grip, a threaded barrel, or a shrouded barrel. 

Using data compiled by Giffords Law Center, a gun control advocacy group, 24/7 Wall St. identified the 10 states that have banned assault-style weapons. 

Assault weapons bans in the states on this list were generally put in place in an attempt to reduce mass shootings. Many of the most horrific mass shootings in recent years have been carried with the types of firearms that are now banned in the states on this list. (Here is a look at the states with the most mass shootings.)

Between 1994 and 2004, the federal government had an assault weapons ban, and during that decade, mass shooting deaths were 70% less likely than they were in the years before the ban was in place, or after it expired, according to Giffords. In several states on this list, bans on assault weapons have been in place for decades, even predating the federal ban. (Here is a look at every state’s gun law grade.)

Click here to see the 9 states that have banned assault-style weapons.

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