Prosecutors in the radically far-left state of Washington are seeking the authority to suspend the gun rights of juveniles, despite a federal law that prohibits gun ownership by anyone under the age of 18.
As it stands, the state’s “Red Flag” laws allow judges to issue an Extreme Risk Protection Order against any legal adult gun owner who allegedly poses a risk to himself/herself or others.
The laws specifically permit both local authorities and family members to request that the gun rights of anyone who exhibits allegedly troubling behavior be suspended. If a judge approves the request, local authorities then have the right to confiscate the individual’s firearms.
It’s a controversial set of laws that’s been implemented in various states despite facing a tsunami of backlash from the National Rifle Association and other Second Amendment groups.
— BocaRatonRC (@BocaRatonRC) December 31, 2015
Despite the laws already being controversial, local prosecutors want to see them expanded further because of the problems they sometimes face when dealing with juvenile offenders.
Prosecutor Kimberly Wyatt of King County’s Regional Domestic Violence Firearms Unit described to MyNorthWest one scenario to where a father of a juvenile offender refused to confirm with the authorities that his firearms had been removed from their home.
“We would file the ERPO against the juvenile because the father has access to firearms in the home, and the father is not being cooperative with law enforcement to confirm that the firearms are out of the home,” she said, describing how she could use a modified ERPO to resolve this situation.
She claimed that the goal wouldn’t be to rob the father of his right to firearms.
“We’re trying to say, ‘Dad lawfully can possess those guns,’ and we would hope that most parents have given law enforcement reassurances where the firearms are,” she said.
“But in this particular case, the father has declined to give any of those reassurances. So we would say that the juvenile could not be in that home with access to firearms. If dad wants to keep the firearms in the home and not share the information, you know that puts him in a difficult position.”
If prosecutors like Wyatt could impose an ERPO on juvenile offenders, gun-owning parents would have no other option but to either kick their kick their juvenile son or daughter out of their home or store their weapons off-property. Neither idea sounds appealing to many.
What remains unclear is what would happen if the parents refused. Would their guns be confiscated? Some on Twitter certainly believe so.
— BigO0828 (@BigO0828) November 25, 2018
Own guns? Have kids? If they get in trouble at school the state will take your guns away without due process.
‘Red flag’ gun law should include minors, Washington state prosecutors say | Fox News https://t.co/Q78mV5bGyU
— SicSemp (@TyrannyFails) November 25, 2018
This is just a way to get all guns as they want under this ‘Red flag’ gun law in Washington State! Against our 2nd amendment!??. ‘Red flag’ gun law should include minors, Washington state prosecutors sayhttps://t.co/yDNPIfcYTO
— Tracy Rodrick (@RodrickTracy) November 25, 2018
Exactly how the Stasi executed their plans, first they came for their guns, then they came for them.https://t.co/ZUyhcrDC58
— Anthony Cartner (@AnthonyCartner) November 25, 2018
— BigO0828 (@BigO0828) November 25, 2018
Despite concerns about Washington’s already contentious “red flag” laws, a so-called legislative “task force” composed of local police officers, mental health experts, school shooting survivors and the American Civil Liberties Union agreed earlier this year that an ERPO expansion is needed.
“[They had] been meeting to develop strategies to prevent mass shootings, and it recently released a list of 25 recommendations,” MyNorthWest reported. “Among the recommendations, clarifying state law to make clear ERPOs can apply to minors.”
It’s not the first time that the ACLU has taken stances antithetical to actual civil liberties. Earlier this month the group officially came out against due process, shocking many.