Eagle County Sheriff James Van Beek said he will refuse to enforce Colorado’s new “red flag” gun control law, according to a Monday interview on “Fox & Friends.”
The statute says firearms may be taken away from citizens who are deemed dangerous, but who may not have broken any laws. (RELATED: Colorado Sheriff Would Risk Jail To Defy ‘Red Flag’ Gun Law)
“I just became very, very concerned because of the whole way they went about it. It was supposed to be for mental health. It was supposed to be for taking care of people … and at least in my opinion, they went about the process totally backwards,” Van Beek said.
“They went after the people’s rights. They went after [it] in a manner that I didn’t think gave them due process because they said, ‘well we need to do these things. We need to take these things away from them. We need to take these tools away from them.’ But they never provided any kind of assistance. So there was no outlet. So to me there wasn’t any kind of due process.”
Van Beek said family members or friends who are concerned about someone’s mental health can now go to court and have the guns taken away.
“Either a household member or a relative or someone who’s directly connected with the person that they’re concerned about can go to the court and they petition the court — similar to like a civil restraining order but this is an extreme risk restraining order,” he said.
“They file a petition with the courts and they explain on this one that this person is dangerous because of X, Y, Z,. It’s an ex parte hearing … The judge reviews it. If the judge feels that it meets the standard, which is just over 50 percent, then the judge can issue a temporary restraining order. If it’s law enforcement that does it, then law enforcement is expected to submit a search warrant right away at the same time. And if that person is deemed by the judge to be able to do that, then the law enforcement then has to go either execute and have the person turn his weapons in within the next 24 hours, or go execute a search warrant on this person and go and take all their guns.”
Van Beek said those who are targeted under the law are entitled to a hearing within two weeks of the weapon seizure, and may also have an attorney present to represent them.
Colorado is the 15th state to adopt a “red flag” gun law, according to Fox News.
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