A bill written by a Georgia congresswoman that would provide for a host of gun control measures is making its way through the Democrat-controlled U.S. House of Representatives.
“A family or household member of the applicable individual, or a law enforcement officer, may submit to an appropriate district court of the United States a petition requesting that the court issue an ex parte Federal extreme risk protection order or long-term Federal extreme risk protection order with respect to an individual,” says the text of H.R. 2377.
The bill would implement what are commonly known as “red flag” laws, allowing Americans to be stripped of their firearms before being charged or convicted of a crime. Debate over whether such laws are constitutional has raged for years.
Representative Lucy McBath (D-GA-06) is the primary sponsor of the bill, which passed the House on a near party-line vote Thursday, 224 – 202.
McBath celebrated on social media.
“The House just passed my #FERPO ‘red flag’ bill to provide loved ones and law enforcement the tools they need to help prevent mass shootings—with support from both Democrats and Republicans. This is the time. This is the moment. We must #EndGunViolence,” she said on Twitter.
The House just passed my #FERPO "red flag" bill to provide loved ones and law enforcement the tools they need to help prevent mass shootings—with support from both Democrats and Republicans.
— Rep. Lucy McBath (@RepLucyMcBath) June 9, 2022
Five Republicans, including controversial outgoing Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL-18) voted with Democrats on the gun control measure.
If a subject of a red flag law violates the order, his or her firearms could be seized, according to the text of the bill.
“If a respondent knowingly attempts, in violation of a Federal extreme risk protection order, to access a firearm, ammunition, or a permit that was surrendered or removed under this subsection, the firearm, ammunition, or permit shall be subject to seizure,” the bill says.
Further, the law mandates training on its enforcement.
“The head of each Federal law enforcement agency shall require each Federal law enforcement officer employed by the agency to complete training in the safe, impartial, effective, and equitable use and administration of Federal extreme risk protection orders …” the bill says.
Federal law enforcement agencies would be required to train their agents on bias, appropriate use of “red flags,” de-escalation tactics and community relations.
The bill now heads to the Democrat-controlled Senate.
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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at The Georgia Star News and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected]