Tag Archives: red flag

Red Flag Law and Public Safety | The Line

firearm-revolver-bullet-gun

February 14, 2020 – Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel discuss Senate Bill 5, the Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order Act, as it advances through the legislature. This emotionally charged “red flag” bill has passionate supporters and opponents. Opponents see it a violation of the second amendment’s guarantee of the right to bear arms.  Supporters view it as an effective way to prevent violence, mass shootings, and even suicides. The panelists also debate how the legislation has been handled during the 30-day session. (This segment is part of our #YourNMGov project, in collaboration with KUNM radio and the Santa Fe Reporter, and funded by the Thornburg Foundation and New Mexico Local News Fund.)  

NOTE: The full New Mexico House of Representatives passed SB5 after this segment was aired. It is now headed to Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham’s desk, where she is expected to sign it into law. Shortly after the 39-31 vote, Lujan Grisham issued the following statement:

“This is a tremendous victory for New Mexicans’ public safety. This tool will empower law enforcement to keep our communities safer. It will minimize the plain and unacceptable risks of gun violence and suicide all across New Mexico. Lawmakers showed great courage tonight. I applaud them and am particularly grateful to Representatives Ely and Garratt for their willingness to stand up and lead on this common-sense measure. I look forward to signing it into law in short order. I look forward to continuing to invest in and support law enforcement officers and resources in our state. And I am very proud to say New Mexico is moving forward on balanced, responsible gun safety. Families in every corner of our state will benefit.” 

There was also strong reaction from Republican House Leadership. Representative Jim Townsend issued the following statement: 

“Democrat Daymon Ely (Bernalillo) admitted in debate that ‘this bill will infringe on New Mexicans constitutional rights,’ and we certainly agree. The Governor is going to be taking firearms from people who have not committed a crime, and they will be forced to prove themselves to be innocent.” 

Line Panelists:
Tom Garrity, The Garrity Group PR
Sophie Martin, attorney
Edmund E. Perea, attorney and public safety analyst
Giovanna Rossi, Collective Action Strategies and The Well Woman Show (KUNM) 

For Further Reading: 
Senate approves red flag gun measure Albuquerque Journal
Journal Poll: New Mexicans back red flag bill Albuquerque Journal
Revised ‘red flag’ legislation passes Senate Santa Fe New Mexican
County police have seized hundreds of guns with ‘red flag’ law in two years since Parkland shooting   CNN 

Related:
House endorses broad anti-crime bill Albuquerque Journal
Public safety package taking shape Albuquerque Journal
Bipartisan package of public safety bills advances in House  Santa Fe New Mexican 

Transcript:

>>GRANT: BACK TO ROUNDHOUSE.  THIS WEEK A LOT OF ATTENTION IS STILL FOCUSED ON THE SO-CALLED RED FLAG BILL. THIS MEASURE WOULD ALLOW THE JUDGE TO TAKE AWAY A PERSON’S FIREARM IF THEY ARE DETERMINED TO BE AN IMMINENT THREAT TO THEMSELVES OR OTHERS. THE MEASURE ALREADY PASSED THE FULL SENATE, IT’S FLYING THROUGH THE HOUSE THIS WEEK, BUT NOT WITHOUT A LOT OF GNASHING OF TEETH ESPECIALLY BY REPUBLICAN LAWMAKERS. THEY HAVE EXPRESSED FRUSTRATION WITH HOW THEY PERCEIVE THE BILL AS BEING RUSHED THROUGH THE LEGISLATIVE PROCESS. JOINING US TO DISCUSS THOSE CONCERNS ARE LINE PANELIST STARTING WITH REGULAR LOCAL ATTORNEY SOPHIE MARTIN. ANOTHER REGULAR BACK WITH US, THIS WEEK IS TOM GARRITY OF THE GARRITY GROUP PR. GIOVANNA ROSSI IS ALSO WITH US. SHE IS PRESIDENT AND OWNER OF COLLECTIVE ACTION STRATEGIES AND HOSTS THE WELL WOMAN SHOW ON KUNM RADIO. AND WELCOME BACK ED PEREA, A LAWYER AND PUBLIC SAFETY ANALYST.  GREAT TO HAVE YOU ALL HERE. THIS BILL, SENATE BILL 5, AN EMOTIONALLY-CHARGED PROPOSAL IS AN EFFECTIVE TOOL TO PREVENT VIOLENCE IN EVEN SUICIDES, BUT OPPONENTS SEE IT AS A VIOLATION OF THE SECOND AMENDMENT. PURE AND SIMPLE. 30 OF THE 33 SHERIFFS HAVE ALREADY COME OUT AGAINST IT, BUT THE IDEA OF THE BILL IS ONLY PART OF THE CONTROVERSY. ALSO AT ISSUE IS HOW THE MEASURE HAS BEEN HANDLED BY THE LEGISLATURE. IT PASSED THROUGH THE SENATE LAST WEEK, GIVEN ONLY ONE COMMITTEE ASSIGNMENT IN THE HOUSE AND APPEARS TO BE ON THE FAST TRUCK TO BECOMING LAW. SOPHIE, AS WE TAPE THIS, WE KNOW IT IS ON THE DOCKET FOR THE HOUSE FLOOR LATER TODAY OR TONIGHT.

>>MARTIN: YOU MAY BE WATCHING THIS AND, LIKE, YEAH, THIS IS ALREADY DONE.

>>GRANT: AND HOUSE SPEAKER ASSIGNED THE BILL TO THE PUBLIC AFFAIRS COMMITTEE, NOT JUDICIARY BECAUSE HE SAID THE HOUSE PASSED THE BILL LAST YEAR. INTERESTED IN THAT PARTICULAR POINT ABOUT JUDICIARY NOT HAVING A CUT AT THIS, EVEN THOUGH THERE ARE LOTS OF AMENDMENTS THAT MAKE IT FAR DIFFERENT FROM THE BILL LAST YEAR. WHAT IS YOUR SENSE?

>>MARTIN: THERE ARE AMENDMENTS THAT HAVE BEEN MADE AND SOME OF THEM FAIRLY SIGNIFICANT BUT I THINK THAT THE DECISION TO ONLY REFER TO ONE COMMITTEE REALLY REFLECTS CONFIDENCE ON THE PART OF THE DEMOCRATIC HOUSE MEMBERS AND LEADERSHIP THAT IT WILL GO THROUGH. I MEAN, I THINK, YOU KNOW, AND THAT THEY WANT IT TO. TYPICALLY THE KIND OF GAMES WE SEE IF YOU DON’T WANT A BILL TO GO THROUGH, YOU ASSIGN IT TO MANY, MANY COMMITTEES. BUT HERE TIME IS SHORT, THERE APPEARS TO BE CONSENSUS THAT THE HOUSE WILL VOTE TO APPROVE THIS. DAYMON ELY, FOR INSTANCE, HAS COME OUT AND SAID HE THINKS IT IS GOING TO PASS THROUGH QUICKLY AND THAT THERE IS NOT GOING TO BE A LOT OF CONCERN, AT LEAST ON THE DEMOCRATIC SIDE ABOUT TRYING TO MAKE ADDITIONAL CHANGES. HE SAID WE EXPECT IT TO PASS AS IS SO THERE DOESN’T NEED TO BE RECONCILIATION. ALL OF THAT IS TO SAY WE HAVE HAD SURPRISES FROM THE LEGISLATURE THIS YEAR, YOU KNOW, THE CONVENTIONAL WISDOM WAS THAT CANNABIS WOULD GO THROUGH AND IT IS TABLED, SOCIAL SECURITY RELEASING THE TAX ON SOCIAL SECURITY WOULD GO THROUGH, THAT HASN’T HAPPENED. BUT AT LEAST AT THIS POINT, THERE IS A LOT OF CONFIDENCE THAT THIS RED FLAG BILL IS A GO.

>>GRANT: I HEAR SOPHIE’S POINT AND A LOT OF FOLKS WOULD AGREE WITH THAT IF YOU’RE ON THE SIDE OF PASSING THIS LAW, BUT SOMETHING SEEMS TO COME UP SHORT PEOPLE OPPOSED TO THIS PARTICULARLY OF PUBLIC TESTIMONY WAS RATHER LIMITED, YOU KNOW, IT JUST DIDN’T FEEL LIKE A FULL AND UNFETTERED HEARING FOR THIS THING HAS HAPPENED TO THIS SO FAR.

>>GARRITY: IT APPEARS WHEN THE BILL WAS OVER IN THE SENATE AND BEING HEARD FIRST AT PUBLIC AFFAIRS AND THEN WHEN IT WAS INTRODUCED, THEY USED THE ENTIRE SENATE CHAMBER FOR PEOPLE TO PROVIDE THAT FEEDBACK AND INPUT AND IT SEEMS AS IF THAT WAS TWO BITES OF THE APPLE WERE OVER IN THE SENATE. ONCE IT MOVED OVER TO THE HOUSE, IT WAS, YOU KNOW WHAT, OUR FOCUS IS GETTING THIS DONE. AND AS A RESULT, I THINK IT WAS AT THE EXPENSE OF PUBLIC INPUT. THAT IS THE ONE GREAT CHALLENGE THAT THE LEGISLATORS HAVE IN THE 30-DAY SESSION. HOW DO YOU PROVIDE INPUT THROUGH THE COMMITTEE PROCESS THROUGH ALSO, BY PROVIDING A TRUE DEBATE AMONG REPUBLICANS AND DEMOCRATS ON THE BILL. BUT INSTEAD WE HAVE SEEN IS A COUPLE OF COMMITTEES, INCLUDING JUDICIARY, WE JUST HAD ONE, AND IT IS BASICALLY NOW BROUGHT TO THE FLOOR. I THINK IT IS MORE OF A SIGN OF PARTISANSHIP AS OPPOSED TO MAKING SURE THAT THE BEST BILL GETS THROUGH THE LEGISLATURE.

>>GRANT: YOUR THOUGHT ON THIS. AGAIN, A LOT OF ISSUES AT STAKE HERE AND TAKE THE SIDE HERE FOR DEVIL’S ADVOCATE FOR THE SHERIFFS. IT SEEMS TO ME THE SHERIFFS DIDN’T GET A FAIR FULL HEARING HERE. JUST DIDN’T FEEL IN MY GUT THEY WERE REALLY HEARD HERE, MAYBE ON PURPOSE.

>>PEREA: I AGREE WITH TOM, THIS BILL IS LOOKING MORE PARTISAN LIKE. THIS IS SUCH AN IMPORTANT ISSUE. AND I GET IT. I UNDERSTAND THE NEED TO DO SOMETHING ABOUT THE VIOLENCE AND THESE MASS SHOOTINGS THAT WE HAVE SEEN ACROSS THE COUNTRY AND LOCAL NEIGHBORHOODS BUT WE WANT TO BE CAREFUL WE DON’T PUT THE CART BEFORE THE HORSE.  WE NEED TO TAKE OUR TIME AND THINK THIS THING THROUGH. THERE ARE A LOT OF GAPS THAT STILL REMAIN AS FAR AS THE BILL IS CONCERNED. SAFEGUARDS THAT NEED TO BE PUT IN PLACE. WE REALLY CAN’T PLAY AROUND WITH OUR CONSTITUTION. THERE IS A SECOND AMENDMENT RIGHT AND I GET IT, BUT THERE IS SOME THINGS THAT MAYBE WE CAN DO TO ASSURE THE SECOND AMENDMENT IS PROTECTED. COME UP WITH REASONABLE LAWS THAT ARE GOING TO ENSURE INCREASED SAFETY OF OUR COMMUNITY. I DON’T THINK THE BILL IN ITS PRESENT FORM IS THERE YET. I THINK THERE HAS TO BE MORE THOUGHT THAT GOES INTO IT. THERE IS SOME LIABILITY ISSUES. A JUDGE COULD MAKE A DECISION TO REMOVE A GUN, THE COURTS AND JUDGES ARE IMMUNE FROM LIABILITY. LAW ENFORCEMENT ISN’T.  HOW IS LAW ENFORCEMENT GOING TO APPROACH THESE SITUATIONS WHERE THEY KNOW IF THEY MAKE THE WRONG DECISION, THEY MAY BE LIABLE FOR DAMAGES AND SO THAT IS –

>>GRANT: CAN THAT BE HASHED OUT ON THE FLOOR HEARING ON THE HOUSE SIDE TODAY? THAT LIABILITY ISSUE SEEMS LIKE A VERY IMPORTANT DEAL FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE. I CAN SEE THE RAMIFICATIONS OF SHERIFFS GOING, YOU KNOW WHAT, I AM JUST NOT GOING TO TOUCH THIS THING. SEEMS OBVIOUS.

>>PEREA: LIABILITY IS ONE PIECE AND THERE ARE OTHER ISSUES THAT NEED TO BE THOUGHT THROUGH. CURRENTLY MOST LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER ALREADY HAVE TOOLS TO DEAL WITH THESE TYPES OF SITUATIONS. OFTEN IF THEY ARE ON SITE AND THEY ARE DEALING WITH POTENTIALLY DANGEROUS SITUATION INVOLVING A FIREARM WITH SOMEONE WHO IS THREATENING USE OF THE FIREARM, IN SOME CASES THAT FIREARM CAN ALREADY BE REMOVED BY LAW ENFORCEMENT AT THAT MOMENT AND PUT INTO SAFE KEEPING TO PROTECT THAT INDIVIDUAL. LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICERS HAVE BEEN DOING THIS FOR YEARS AND DECADES AND HANDLE IT WITHOUT THE LAW BUT ONCE YOU PUT A LAW IN PLACE YOU WANT TO BE CAREFUL AND MAKE SURE THERE ARE CLEAR SAFEGUARDS. THERE SO MUCH MORE TO TALK ABOUT ON THIS ISSUE BECAUSE I AM NOT EVEN SURE THERE IS A STRONG CORRELATION BETWEEN THIS RED FLAG BILL AND THE POTENTIAL VIOLENCE.  I WOULD LIKE TO SEE MORE STUDY OF THAT.

>>GRANT: 17 STATES, INCLUDING DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA, PASSED RED FLAG LAWS. POLLING HERE IN NEW MEXICO, VERY FIRMLY IN FAVOR OF RED FLAG LAWS. SO, AT THE END OF THE DAY, DOES THE PROCESS STUFF REALLY MATTER?

>>ROSSI: LISTENING TO THE COMMENTS, WE WANT TO CREATE A GOOD PUBLIC POLICY, YOU KNOW. AT THE SAME TIME, WE HAVE SEEN THIS BILL IN 17 OTHER STATES AND DC AND WE HAVE SEEN BIPARTISAN SUPPORT IN OTHER STATES. SO THE IDEA THAT THIS IS JUST A PARTISAN ISSUE IS REALLY UNIQUE TO NEW MEXICO. BECAUSE WE HAVE SEEN BIPARTISAN SUPPORT IN OTHER AREAS. SO, I DON’T THINK THAT WE NEED TO WORRY SO MUCH ABOUT WAITING AND TAKING MORE TIME AND ALL THAT. WE HAVE TAKEN A LOT OF TIME ALREADY. AND WE HAVE SEEN MORE AND MORE GUN VIOLENCE. NOW, IS THIS BILL THE ANSWER TO GUN VIOLENCE, NO. RIGHT? IT IS MAKING A STATEMENT. IT IS MAKING MAYBE A DIFFERENCE. BUT, FOR SURE IT IS MAKING A STATEMENT ABOUT, YOU KNOW, THE NEED TO DO SOMETHING. I THINK THERE ARE DEEPER ISSUES AS WAS BROUGHT UP AND THOSE ISSUES REALLY NEED TO BE LOOKED AT. SO, YOU KNOW, WE CAN LOOK AT THIS KIND OF BAND-AID APPROACH THAT IS VERY CONTROVERSIAL AND/OR WE COULD SEE SOMETHING REALLY BOLD AND LOOK AT SOME OF THE ROOT CAUSES OF GUN VIOLENCE AND LOOK AT WHO ARE THE PEOPLE THAT ARE DOING THIS AND WHAT ARE THEIR NEEDS? WHAT IS GOING ON HERE?

>>GRANT: THAT WAS A BIG PART OF THE DEBATE, YOU COULD SEE PEOPLE HINTING AT THAT OR TRYING TO GET THAT INTO THE CONVERSATION THAT IF YOU REALLY WANT TO MAKE THIS WORK, YOU HAVE GOT TO MAKE IT MORE HOLISTIC AND BRING IN THE MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES INTO THIS.

>>ROSSI: THERE IS THAT BUT THERE IS STARTING SOMEWHERE, RIGHT? WE NEED TO DO SOMETHING TO, AGAIN, TO KIND OF MAKE A STATEMENT, TO MAKE PEOPLE FEEL LIKE THIS IS IMPORTANT. AND SO I THINK FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE, IT IS, YOU KNOW, WHETHER OR NOT IT DOES EXACTLY WHAT IT NEEDS TO DO, IT IS MAKING A STATEMENT THAT PEOPLE REALLY NEED TO SEE IN TERMS OF ADDRESSING GUN VIOLENCE.

>>GRANT: INTERESTING, JUST FOR PERSPECTIVE, WE DID HAVE BACKGROUND CHECKS PASSED, RECENTLY WENT INTO EFFECT, THE WORLD DIDN’T FALL APART, A HOLE DIDN’T OPEN AND WE DIDN’T FALL IN.  SEEMED TO HAVE BEEN OKAY. SEE WHAT HAPPENS WITH THIS, ESPECIALLY IN THE HOUSE. THAT IS ALL THE TIME WE HAVE FOR THAT TOPIC. STILL TO COME, WE DIVE INTO THE PROPOSED CHANGES WITHIN THE CYFD.

Your NM Government: Extreme Risk Firearm Protection Order Law

Roundhouse

 

January 31, 2020 – This week at the Roundhouse we talked to lawmakers about a proposal to allow police to take guns away from people if a judge determines they pose a threat of immediate danger to themselves or others. If the judge finds probable cause, the court can issue an extreme risk protection order to have guns and ammunition removed for 15 days. During that time, the gun owner may appear at a hearing to determine if the order should be extended. After the order expires the guns and ammo would be returned. (This segment is part of our #YourNMGov project, in collaboration with KUNM radio and the Santa Fe Reporter, and funded by the Thornburg Foundation and New Mexico Local News Fund) 

 Guests: 
Sen. Antoinette Sedillo-Lopez, (D) Albuquerque 
Rep. Bill Rehm, (R) Albuquerque 
Rep. Joy Garratt, (D) Albuquerque 

 For Further Reading:  

Legislator proposes temporary weapon confiscation from those who pose a danger to the public NM Political Report 

Governor to again seek red flag lawAlbuquerque Journal 

Sheriffs Oppose Red Flag Gun Legislation in New MexicoAssociated Press 

Gun studies: Permit laws reduce murders; red flag laws cut suicides NPR 

Editorial: It’s a key issue, but red flag law won’t fit in 30-day session Albuquerque Journal 

Closing the Loophole: A law that went into effect July 1 makes it harder for domestic violence perpetrators to own guns and encourages advocates to push furtherSanta Fe Reporter 

2019 Extreme Risk Protection Order DiscussionNew Mexico in Focus

Rep. Daymon Ely Discusses Extreme Risk Protection Orders (from 2019)New Mexico in Focus

Transcript:

>>GENE GRANT: A CONTROVERSIAL BILL AT THE CAPITOL ALLOWS A JUDGE TO TEMPORARILY TAKE SOMEONE’S FIREARMS AFTER A COURT HEARING FOUND THEY WERE A DANGER TO THEMSELVES OR OTHERS. IT IS OFTEN CALLED A RED FLAG LAW, AND 17 OTHER STATES HAVE THEM. THE MEASURES, SENATE BILL 5 AND HOUSE BILL 7, SET OUT A FRAMEWORK FOR WHO COULD PETITION THE COURT FOR A TEMPORARY RESTRICTION, HOW LONG IT LASTS AND HOW LAW ENFORCEMENT WOULD GO ABOUT GETTING THOSE FIREARMS FROM GUN OWNERS. NMIF CORRESPONDENT GWYNETH DOLAND WAS AT THE ROUNDHOUSE TO TALK TO WOMEN AND MEN CONSIDERING THE BILL.  

>>GWYNETH DOLAND: SENATOR ANTOINETTE SEDILLO-LOPEZ, YOU ARE SUPPORTING A BILL THAT WOULD ALLOW LAW ENFORCEMENT TO TAKE GUNS AWAY FROM SOME FOLKS. WHY DO WE NEED THIS?   

>>SENATOR SEDILLO-LOPEZ: THIS IS IMPORTANT TO PREVENT THE KIND OF TRAGEDIES THAT WE SAW IN EL PASO, THAT KIND OF GUN SHOOTINGS WHEN PEOPLE ARE POSING A DANGER TO THEMSELVES OR OTHERS. IT WILL ALSO PREVENT SUICIDES. WE HAVE VERY POWERFUL TESTIMONY FROM AN INDIVIDUAL WHO FELT LIKE THIS COULD HAVE PREVENTED A GUN SHOOTING OF HER COUSIN, WHO WAS VERY DEPRESSED. SO, THIS IS AN OPPORTUNITY TO REALLY PREVENT THAT KIND OF NEEDLESS GUN DEATH.  

>>DOLAND: THERE WERE PEOPLE WHO TALKED IN THE COMMITTEE HEARING THIS WEEK ABOUT FEAR THAT THIS IS GOING TO ALLOW THE GOVERNMENT TO COME IN AND JUST GRAB GUNS INDISCRIMINATELY, ROUND THEM UP, KEEP THEM FOR EVER.   

>>SEDILLO-LOPEZ: THAT IS NOT POSSIBLE. WE HAVE A SECOND AMENDMENT AND THIS IS A VERY, VERY SMALL NUMBER OF PEOPLE. I DON’T KNOW HOW MANY CASES EXACTLY THERE ARE, BUT, LAST YEAR, WITH THE DOMESTIC VIOLENCE AND GUN SAFETY BILL, ONLY 29 INDIVIDUALS WERE ORDERED TO SURRENDER THEIR GUNS. THIS ISN’T A BIG TAKE AWAY OF GUNS. AND I WOULD NEVER SUPPORT A BIG GOVERNMENT ROUNDUP. WE HAVE A SECOND AMENDMENT.  

>>DOLAND: REP. REHM, YOU SPENT 20 YEARS AS A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER. DO YOU THINK POLICE SHOULD BE ABLE TO TAKE GUNS AWAY FROM PEOPLE WHO A JUDGE HAS DETERMINED POSE A THREAT TO THEMSELVES OR OTHERS?   

>>REPRESENTATIVE BILL REHM: IF YOU’RE SPEAKING ABOUT THE RED FLAG BILL, THE PROBLEM IS THAT THE JUDGE IS DOING THIS WITHOUT ANY DUE PROCESS. WHAT IS HAPPENING IS THIS IS OCCURRING AND I WANT TO TALK ABOUT OUR CONSTITUTION. OUR CONSTITUTION SAYS THAT YOU ARE INNOCENT UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY. THE WAY MOST RED FLAG BILLS ARE WRITTEN SAYS, WE ARE GOING TO COME TAKE YOUR WEAPONS ON AN ACCUSATION, NOT A CRIMINAL ACT, AND THEN YOU HAVE TWO WEEKS TO COME INTO COURT AND PROVE THAT YOU ARE NOT. OUR SYSTEM IS, YOU’RE INNOCENCE UNTIL PROVEN GUILTY. THIS TURNS IT BACKWARDS WHERE IT SAYS YOU’RE GUILTY, NOW YOU PROVE TO THE COURT YOU’RE NOT. SO, CONCEPTUALLY WE HAVE PROBLEMS WITH IT FROM LAW ENFORCEMENT. IF A PERSON MAKES A THREAT TO ANOTHER PERSON, WE ALREADY HAVE LAWS FOR THAT. AND THE OFFICER CAN GO IN AND INVESTIGATE IT AND THAT INCLUDES EVEN DOING SEARCH WARRANTS AND TAKING WEAPONS IF THEY BELIEVE THAT THREAT IS CREDIBLE.  

>>DOLAND: SUICIDE, THOUGH. THERE HAS BEEN EMOTIONAL TESTIMONY ABOUT FOLKS WHO TALK ABOUT IT, THEIR FAMILIES ARE REALLY WORRIED ABOUT IT BECAUSE THEY HAVE THIS NOTICE AND I MEAN THAT IS NOT EXACTLY THE SAME SITUATION.   

>>REHM: SO, LET’S TALK ABOUT SUICIDES. WHEN I WOULD RESPOND TO THEM, IF THERE WAS A FIREARM, I WOULD TAKE THE FIREARM INTO WHAT WE TERM SAFE KEEPING. SO, I WOULD PLACE IT INTO EVIDENCE. AND IT WOULDN’T BE IN THE HOME. WHEN WE TALK ABOUT CHANGING THE MENTALLY ILL PORTION OF WHO CAN OBTAIN A FIREARM OR NOT OBTAIN IT, THAT CHANGE NEEDS TO COME FEDERALLY. RIGHT NOW IT IS ONLY THOSE WHO HAVE GONE THROUGH COURT AND BEEN ADJUDICATED MENTALLY ILL. AND IT NEEDS TO BE A WIDER GROUP, I AGREE, BUT IT HAS TO BE DONE FEDERALLY. WE CAN TALK ABOUT THAT LATER.  

>>DOLAND: WHAT DO YOU SAY TO FOLKS WHO WATCHED THE TERRIBLE SHOOTING IN EL PASO, WHO HAVE EXPERIENCED SCHOOL SHOOTINGS HERE IN NEW MEXICO, WHO ARE WATCHING THIS VIOLENCE, VICTIMS OF IT, HOW SHOULD WE STOP THIS VIOLENCE.   

>>REHM: IF WE LOOK AT THE ROOT CAUSE IT IS MENTAL ILLNESS AND I THINK WE ALL WOULD AGREE WITH THAT.  

>>DOLAND: REP. GARRATT, YOU’RE A SPONSOR OF THE RED FLAG BILL. WHY IS THIS IMPORTANT TO YOU?   

>>REPRESENTATIVE JOY GARRATT: I AM SPONSORING THE RED FLAG BILL BECAUSE I AM A TEACHER AND PARENT. LAST YEAR, I HAD TO WORK WITH KINDERGARTENERS AND ELEMENTARY SCHOOL KIDS TO LEARN HOW TO EVACUATE IN CASE OF A SHOOTER ON CAMPUS. NO CHILD SHOULD HAVE TO WORRY ABOUT THAT. THAT IS MY FIRST MOTIVATION. THE SECOND IS A FRIEND OF MINE’S DAUGHTER HAD A GUN, THEY KNEW SHE WAS SUICIDAL. SHE HAD ACCESS. THEY COULDN’T GET TO HER. THEY COULDN’T CALL A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER TO GET THAT GUN FROM HER, SHE DID SUCCESSFULLY COMMIT SUICIDE. SO, THIS IS A TOOL THAT ALLOWS GUNS TO BE TAKEN AWAY FROM SOMEONE ONLY IF THEY ARE IN IMMINENT DANGER OF HARMING THEMSELVES OR OTHERS. I WANT TO STRESS IMMINENT DANGER.  

>>DOLAND: HOW DO WE KNOW THERE IS IMMINENT DANGER? WHO DECIDES?   

>>GARRATT: AS THE LAW IS CRAFTED, CLOSE FAMILY MEMBERS OR A LAW ENFORCEMENT OFFICER WHO FEELS THAT THERE IS EVIDENCE, MAYBE OVER TIME, MAYBE IN A CRISIS SITUATION, CAN GO TO A JUDGE WITH A SWORN AFFIDAVIT STATING THAT THIS PERSON IS AT RISK.  THE JUDGE THEN HAS TO DECIDE TO GRANT THE PROTECTIVE ORDER OR NOT. IT IS NOT AUTOMATIC.  

>>DOLAND: SO, SOME FOLKS SAY, WE WOULD BE BETTER OFF TRYING TO WORK AND PUT MORE RESOURCES TOWARD MENTAL HEALTH BECAUSE THAT IS THE PRIMARY CAUSE OF GUN VIOLENCE.  

>>GARRATT: MENTAL HEALTH IS THE FIRST TIER OF CARE BUT IN SOME OF OUR RURAL COUNTIES, WHERE ACTUALLY THERE IS A HIGHER RATE OF SUICIDE, IT IS NOT AVAILABLE. SO, THIS IS ONE TOOL THAT IS AVAILABLE TO LAW ENFORCEMENT WHEN SOMEONE IS AT RISK FOR COMMITTING SUICIDE.  

>>DOLAND: WHY ARE GUNS SO IMPORTANT IN SUICIDE CASES?   

>>GARRATT: MORE THAN 50% OF THE SUICIDES IN NEW MEXICO — AND NEW MEXICO I BELIEVE HAS THE FOURTH HIGHEST RATES OF SUICIDE — ARE COMMITTED WITH A FIREARM. A YOUNG PERSON WHO IS IMPULSIVE GOING UP AND DOWN EMOTIONALLY, CAN GRAB A GUN WITHOUT THINKING AND             QUICKLY ATTEMPT TO TAKE THEIR LIFE. SO, THAT IS WHY GUNS ARE THE FIRST CONCERN AND I SHOULD ADD, WE HAVE HIGH RATES OF SUICIDE IN OUR 15 TO 23 AGE BRACKET. NATIVE AMERICANS HAVE THE HIGHEST RATE. OUR YOUNG PEOPLE ARE IN CRISIS SOMETIMES. SO, THIS REALLY PREVENTS TRAGEDY. WILL IT PREVENT EVERY SUICIDE? OF COURSE NOT. IT IS ONE TOOL.