You can't carry a loaded AK-47 down a street in Minnesota, judge rules

The ruling comes after a man sued St. Cloud after being cited for carrying a loaded AK-47 down the street.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

Laws that prevent people from carrying an AK-47 in public are constitutional.

That's what U.S. District Judge John Tunheim ruled in a case involving a St. Cloud man who was cited for carrying a loaded AK-47 rifle on his back while walking around the city.

Tyler Gottwalt, who has a permit to carry, was cited in November 2014 for violating the city's ordinance that prohibits carrying a gun in public. The case against him was eventually dismissed.

In April 2016, Gottwalt sued the city and three officers claiming his constitutional rights were violated when he was falsely arrested, and he alleged the City of St. Cloud ordinance is "overly broad" and makes it unlawful for someone to carry a gun within the city, which violates the 2nd Amendment.

Gottwalt's lawsuit sought $75,000, plus other fees.

The City of St. Cloud and the three officers named in the lawsuit filed a motion last August to dismiss the charges, and in late March Judge Tunheim granted the defense's motion.

In his opinion, Tunheim said Minnesota law doesn't allow a person to carry a military-style assault weapon – like an AK-47 – in public, regardless if they have a permit to carry

The judge also ruled that laws preventing someone from carrying an AK-47 in public are not unconstitutional, noting Gottwalt didn't prove that he needed the gun for self defense.

Next Up

Related

St. Louis Park man pulls AK-47 on trick-or-treaters, charges say

Charges have been filed against a St. Louis Park man accused of threatening a group of kids with an assault rifle on Halloween night. According to the criminal complaint, 44-year-old Orrin Hager thought the kids had stolen candy from one of his children and went to track the group down accompanied by his wife and two kids...