Ruling loosens ban on owning guns after minor convictions

    A federal appeals court is giving some people convicted of crimes a chance to legally own guns in a decision that loosens longstanding rules.

    The 3rd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals sided with two Pennsylvania men Wednesday, saying their crimes were minor even though they could have produced jail time of more than two years.

    The court restored gun ownership rights to a man who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor corruption of minors for a consensual sexual relationship with a 17-year-old girl working at his bakery.

    It also ruled in favor of a man who pleaded guilty to misdemeanor possession of a handgun without a license.

    The 3rd Circuit says the federal gun ownership ban requires the offenses to be considered serious crimes.

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.