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Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 2023 ‘State Right to Bear Arms in Connecticut.’ Other Laws & Policies. San Francisco, CA: Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. 21 September

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[Editor's note: The Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence regularly updates its webpages with new data as US gun regulation evolves state by state. For the most up-to-date information on US gun laws, please refer to the Giffords URL below]

State Right to Bear Arms in Connecticut

The Constitution of the State of Connecticut provides that "[e]very citizen has a right to bear arms in defense of himself and the state."

In Benjamin v. Bailey, the Supreme Court of Connecticut rejected an article I, § 15 challenge to Connecticut General Statutes §§ 53-202a through 53-202k, which ban the sale, transfer, and possession of assault weapons. The supreme court stated that the language of article I, § 15 "demonstrates that the bearing of arms is not valued in and of itself, but only as a means to particular ends," i.e., defense of self and state.

The Benjamin court also ruled that article I, § 15 permits reasonable regulation of firearms. The court held that the ban on assault weapons was reasonable because weapons other than assault weapons are still available for defense of self and state…

ID: Q7932

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