Senate Approves Self-Defense Exception to Gun Bans

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Gun owners who use their weapon in self-defense got another vote of support from Illinois lawmakers.

The state Senate Thursday approved legislation to protect people who violate local gun laws but end up using a gun in self-defense. It would let them argue in court that their possession of the gun was justified.

It would apply only to local gun charges and not state charges, such as assault or attempted murder.

Critics say it would make it easier for people to use illegal weapons and escape punishment.

It passed 38 to 20 and now moves to the House, which passed a similar bill Wednesday. The legislation was introduced in response to the case of a Wilmette man who shot a burglar and was charged with violating the local law against owning handgun