FRANKFORT, Ky. (WDRB) -- A group of bipartisan lawmakers are proposing a so-called "red flag" law in Kentucky.
The extreme risk protection orders would allow family or police to petition a judge to temporarily take guns away from someone who is an immediate threat to themselves or others.
State Senator Morgan McGarvey (D-Louisville) is teaming up with Senators Julie Raque Adams (R-Louisville), and Paul Hornback (R-Shelbyville), to propose the measure. Louisville Metro Police also supports the "red flag" proposal.
The legislation is still being written, but the Kentucky proposal would allow the courts to temporarily take away guns for two weeks. Hornback proposes that false reporting on someone to get guns taken away would be a chargeable offense.
Red flag laws have been adopted by at least 17 states including Indiana and the District of Columbia. New York's law goes into effect Aug. 24. Most of the laws have been approved since the Feb. 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.
The National Rifle Association said in a statement through a spokesperson, "To safeguard the rights of law-abiding gun owners, Red Flag Laws at a minimum must include strong due process protections, require treatment, and include penalties for those who make frivolous claims."
Senators McGarvey, Racque-Adams and Hornback announcing so-called “red flag” legislation for Kentucky. Would allow family or police to petition judge to temporarily take guns away from someone who is immediate threat to themself or others. @WDRBNews pic.twitter.com/8gngNNSwgE— Travis Ragsdale (@TravisRagsdale) August 8, 2019
Ohio Gov. Mike Dewine, a Republican, bucked his party Tuesday in response to the mass shooting in Dayton to call for a red flag law that would expand background checks for nearly all gun sales and allow courts to restrict firearms access for people perceived as threats.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said firearms must be kept away from "deranged killers" but added that "constitutional rights are not going to be violated." But he did not give specifics about what changes he'll push for following the massacre in El Paso.
On a national level, Republicans are trying to build support for more modest measures. U.S. Senators Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and Marco Rubio of Florida proposed a bill that would allow friends and family members to petition authorities to keep guns away from people deemed a threat to themselves or others. But those efforts are also running into trouble from conservatives, who worry about due process and infringing on gun owners' rights.
President Donald Trump has signaled support for some gun law change. "We must make sure that those judged to pose a grave risk to public safety do not have access to firearms and that if they do those firearms can be taken through rapid due process," Trump said in a White House speech on Monday.
In general, red flag or "extreme risk protection order" laws allow courts to issue temporary orders barring someone from possessing guns based on some showing of imminent danger or a risk of misuse.
State laws vary, but most stipulate that only specific people - usually family or household members - may petition a court for an extreme risk protection order. In some cases, a preliminary order may be granted without prior notice to the person who is the subject of the order. New York's law allows for teachers to petition as well.
Such an order typically is brief, ranging from a few days to about three weeks. Once the person who is alleged to pose a risk of gun violence has been given an opportunity to respond, a more permanent order may be granted, typically for up to a year. The baseline for Kentucky's law, McGarvey said, would be two weeks.
Importantly to Graham and other supporters, before an order can be entered, some factual showing must be made that the subject of the order poses a risk of using a firearm to harm themselves or others.
Kentucky's bill is still not finalized and won't be filed until November, the senators said on Thursday.
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