Red flag law used in Colorado soon after it went into effect in 2020
Colorado's controversial red flag gun law is already in action. 11 News learned Friday night a Denver police officer was able to petition the court and temporarily take away a man's guns.
This is likely the first petition for the red flag gun law granted in our state. The petition states the guns were taken from a man who made suicidal statements to officers. The petition for an extreme risk protection order was granted one day after it was signed by the governor into law. In it, a Denver police officer describes meeting a man suspected of beating his wife. He had a gun and made several suicidal remarks.
Colorado's new law allowed a judge to temporarily take the man's firearms. Not everyone stands behind the new law.
"This has got trouble written all over it," El Paso County Sheriff Bill Elder told 11 News in the past about the bill before it was signed into law.
The controversial red flag law even has law enforcement split.
Sheriff Elder has told us before he opposes it.
"If we're not really careful, we're going to be taking personal property away from people without due process," Elder added.
Fremont, Teller, and dozens of other counties agree with the El Paso County sheriff.
"We're going to do everything we can to fight it, and fight it legally," El Paso County Commissioner Mark Waller said.
The law allows guns to be taken away only if there's evidence a person is dangerous. It's named after Douglas County Deputy Zackari Parrish.
Parrish was killed by a man with a history of mental instability and guns.
"He's going through a manic episode," Douglas County Sheriff
Tony Spurlock stated in the past in regards to the man who killed Deputy Parrish. "And it could have been averted if we had the ability that this bill will give law enforcement to intervene on those extreme cases."
The petition in the Denver case is only temporary for now, and this document says the man won't face any charges. Another hearing on Jan. 16 could determine if his guns should be taken away for up to a year.
for more information on obtaining an extreme risk protection order.
If you are having thoughts of suicide, the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24/7 at 1-800-273-8255.