At least ten bills are working their way through the California state legislature that would expand the state’s “red flag” law, according to the Los Angeles Times. The bills would, among other things, expand the list of people who could request gun confiscation orders and extend the duration of the orders from one to five years.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom is ready and willing to sign whatever gun confiscation schemes the legislature cooks up.
The governor signaled his support at a press conference touting the new ammunition background check law set to take effect July 1. He said he hoped a number of legislative efforts “to expand the scope of the red flag laws” would get to his desk. “I expect they will be supported overwhelmingly upstairs,” he added, referring to the legislature.
Of the ten bills that would expand and/or modify the state’s red flag law, two have the most serious potential to affect California gun owners. AB-61, introduced by Assembly Members Philip Ting, Al Muratsuchi, and Eloise Gómez Reyez, would expand the list of people authorized to ask a judge for a gun confiscation order.
Under current state law, an immediate family member or a law enforcement officer can request a judge to confiscate a person’s firearms if there is a “substantial likelihood” that the person poses an immediate danger to self or others. AB-61 would further allow an employer or a coworker who has “substantial and regular interactions with the person and approval of their employer” to request the order. It would also permit an employee or teacher of a secondary or postsecondary school, with approval of the school administration staff, to request a student’s firearms be removed, provided the student has been attending the school for at least six months.
The second bill, AB-12, would expand the maximum length of a gun confiscation order from one year to five years. In determining the duration of the order, the court would consider how long a person is “likely to continue” to be a danger to self or others. The bill allows the person under the order to request every year that the order be lifted, but they must prove that there is “no longer clear and convincing evidence” that they present a danger.
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Other bills affecting red flag laws would require police departments to standardize their gun confiscation procedures and allow gun owners to voluntarily surrender their firearms to a court.
News of the expanded red flag laws comes the same week that California gun owners will be required to pass a background check for ammunition purchases.