February 10, 2016 News

AP: Gun Lobbyist Calls Protection Seekers “Un-American”, “Vindictive Petitioners”

As the Associated Press reported, gun lobby opponents argued to the legislature that to extreme risk protection orders – a tool empowering families and law enforcement to prevent gun violence tragedies – would serve only to allow ‘vindictive petitioners’ to take away firearms from gun owners.

“Rep. Laurie Jinkins, D-Tacoma, was the lead sponsor of the extreme-risk protection-order bill and said it would provide a tool for families when they see a loved one descend into extreme violence. Cheryl Berenson, a nurse practitioner, said House Bill 2461 would act as a preventive measure to stop a person before tragedy hits. ‘Let’s empower our families and friends to keep our communities safe,’ she said.”

But Phil Shave, [executive director of Washington Arms Collectors] said the bill would allow law enforcement to take property from someone who has not committed a crime. ‘This is a startling, un-American idea,’ he said. ‘It’s designed to be abused by vindictive petitioners.’

Extreme Risk Protection Orders legislation, which was supported in the Legislature by police, domestic violence prevention advocates, doctors, and survivors of gun violence, require petitioners seeking protection to provide evidence under oath of demonstrated mental illness or violent behavior.”

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