A Virginia judge shot down a request to block Gov. Ralph Northam’s firearm ban at a gun-rights rally in Richmond’s Capitol Square on Monday. Chief Judge Joi Jeter Taylor of Richmond Circuit Court heard the lawsuit earlier Thursday, which was filed by rally organizers Virginia Citizens Defense League and Gun Owners of America. A lawyer for the groups claimed the ban violated state law along with protesters’ right to arms, assembly and speech. “The executive order is nothing more than an unconstitutional restraint on rallygoers,” attorney David Browne told the court, according to The Washigton Post. The ban will take effect Friday night as part of a state of emergency ahead of the rally. While announcing the state of emergency Wednesday, Northam said law enforcement observed credible threats of violence ahead of the event. The FBI also arrested on gun charges three members of a neo-Nazi group that were headed to the rallyThursday morning.
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