Los Angeles sheriff: Gun shops not essential, must close

LOS ANGELES — The Los Angeles County sheriff said Tuesday gun shops are not essential businesses and ordered them to stop selling to the public, a move that enraged Second Amendment advocates who said they planned to challenge it in court.

Los Angeles, the nation’s largest county with 10 million residents, enacted a stay-at-home order last week that ordered all nonessential businesses to close to stop the spread of the coronavirus. Sheriff Alex Villanueva said what he described as a “loophole” allowed gun shops to stay open and many attracted long lines of customers.

Villanueva said the order was only meant to keep open businesses that support police departments and other security organizations.

The stay-at-home order is not a license “for everyone to be panic gun-buying or rushing to stores, which is now what we’re seeing,” Villanueva said.

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