Ohio appeals court panel overturns injunction, blocks Cincinnati's unlawful gun laws

An appeals court panel ruled June 26 that Ohio's preemption laws on gun control matter and that Cincinnati leaders can't arbitrarily ignore them.

The split three-judge panel in the Court of Appeals First Appellate District of Ohio overturned Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Jennifer Branch's September ruling in favor of Cincinnati, reversing that ruling and thereby keeping the preemption law intact.

The Ohio Supreme Court had ruled in 2010 that the state's preemption law, ORC 9.68, was indeed constitutional. But that hasn't stopped Ohio's major cities from ignoring the high court and attempting unlawful gun ordinances.

Judge Pierre H. Bergeron wrote the opinion, with Judge Marilyn Zayas concurring in judgment only and Judge Candace Crouse dissenting.

"On balance, as we consider the four preliminary injunction factors, they weigh in the state’s favor, and we thus conclude that the trial court abused its discretion in granting the City’s request for a preliminary injunction of Amended R.C. 9.68. We therefore sustain the state’s sole assignment of error," the opinion reads. "Amended R.C. 9.68 survives this constitutional challenge primarily because the Supreme Court of Ohio largely foreclosed the City’s arguments against it in its decision upholding Original R.C. 9.68 against substantially similar claims."

Dean Rieck, Buckeye Firearms Association executive director, praised the appeals panel but pointed out the case is far from over.

"Ohio decided long ago that gun laws should be set at the state level and only the state level," he said. "However, that has not stopped cities from continuing to pretend as if this isn't settled law. This case will undoubtedly be appealed all the way up to the Ohio Supreme Court. And, once again, they will decide that preemption is valid in all respects."

Rieck explained that cities passing their own gun laws would be confusing. "The reason Ohio prohibits cities and other political subdivisions from enforcing their own laws is that it would create a legal patchwork. With 2,200 cities, villages, and townships in our state, the result would be utter chaos. It would end up making surprise criminals of millions of Ohioans."

According to WLWT News 5, the case returns to Branch's courtroom, with hearings slated for September.

Help us fight for your rights!

Become a member of Buckeye Firearms Association and support our grassroots efforts to defend and advance YOUR RIGHTS!

Subscribe to our FREE Newsletter

Get weekly news and instant alerts on the latest laws and politics that affect your gun rights. Enjoy cutting-edge commentary. Be among the first to hear about gun raffles, firearms training, and special events. Read more.

We respect your privacy and your email address will be kept confidential.


Buckeye Firearms Association is a grassroots organization dedicated to defending and advancing the right of citizens to own and use firearms for all legal activities, including self-defense, hunting, competition, and recreation. Read more.