Massachusetts lawmakers pass ‘red flag’ gun seizure bill
By Chris Eger
Republican Gov. Charlie Baker will now have to decide on signing a proposal allowing for temporary gun seizures from those thought to be a threat to themselves or others.
The emergency bill, H.4670, passed a final roll call in the state legislature last week with only one lawmaker, Fitchburg Republican Sen. Dean Tran, voting against the measure in the Senate, joined by 15 other GOP members in the House. Broad in scope, it would allow current and former romantic partners, family, roommates, and police to seek an extreme risk protection order, suspending someone’s gun rights and firearm license for up to a year.
“This is not anything that changes Second Amendment rights,” said Senate Majority Leader Cynthia Stone Creem, D-Newton. “This is about licensing, when a license needs to be suspended because that person is a risk.”
The so-called “red flag law” establishes a mechanism to allow family members or law enforcement to ask the courts to remove access to guns, ammunition, firearm ID cards, or licenses to carry a firearm from an individual thought to be at risk. The order, once issued, would be transmitted to federal agencies to bar future gun sales or transfers through licensed dealers. The ERPO would last