UPDATED: 7:00 p.m.: WFXR News has learned that the Supreme Court of Virginia has denied a petition filed by gun-rights supporters.
ORIGINAL STORY — The temporary ban on guns at Capitol Square ahead of Monday’s Lobby Day remains in effect after a Richmond Circuit Court judge upheld Gov. Ralph Northam’s executive order Thursday following an injunction request from gun-rights groups.
The VCDL and Gun Owners of America filed their appeal late Thursday night, arguing the Circuit Court judge erred when she denied their request to overturn Northam’s temporary ban on guns on Capitol grounds. Their lawyer says the judge disregarded a Virginia code that prohibits the governor from using a declaration of emergency to ban firearms.
On Friday, Attorney General Mark Herring urged the Virginia Supreme Court to help prevent tragic violence and reject any effort to overturn Northam’s executive order. Herring pointed to credible threats noted by the governor earlier in the week.
“There have been individuals on Capitol Square that have had surveillance operations looking at our entry and exit points,” Northam said during a Wednesday press conference where he announced the weapons ban.
Virginia State Police Superintendent Colonel Gary Settle said their intelligence supported Northam’s claims of security threats.
“The potential threats associated with the particular event do cause us concern as a unified command and heightened our awareness,” Settle explained.
Despite the court being closed, the Virginia Supreme Court could still decide to hold an emergency hearing Friday evening.
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