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Gun groups' success blocking local firearm controls leaves towns desperate to stop massacres

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Rudy Kahsar lays flowers at a makeshift vigil outside a King Soopers grocery store in Boulder, Colo. on March 23, 2021 the day after multiple people were killed, including a police officer.

On March 12, a Colorado judge struck down Boulder’s municipal ban on assault-style rifles.

On March 16, a 21-year-old suburban Denver man bought a Ruger AR-556 semi-automatic pistol.

On March 22 he allegedly shot 10 people at a Boulder supermarket, killing all including a police officer.

The assault-style ban set by the municipality fell after a two-year court case, but is sure to stoke battles nationwide over city attempts to pass firearms regulations that are stricter than state or federal laws.

Police Tuesday did not say where the suspect purchased the Ruger pistol, which is designed to operate like a rifle. Even if bought in Boulder it’s unclear whether it would have been covered by the town’s former ban, which included many semi-automatic rifles and pistols.

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