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FL ‘red flag’ law strips guns from 450+ residents, report says

A firearm being held on June 14, 2017, at Malmstrom Air Force Base, Mont. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Daniel Brosam)
August 03, 2018

The Risk Protection Order is forcing hundreds of Florida residents to forfeit and give up their guns, and since the law has been enacted, more than 450 residents have been stripped of firearms, ammunition and accessories, according to a new report.

Since Florida’s new gun law took effect in mid-March, 467 risk protection cases have been filed in the state as of July 24, Fox News reported this week.

The new law, referred to as a “red flag” law, was passed just three weeks after the Parkland school shooting, where 17 people were killed. The bill was signed by Florida Gov. Rick Scott.

The new gun law enforces a three-day waiting period for most purchases of long guns, raises the minimum age for buying those weapons to 21, and bans the possession of bump stocks, according to Fox.

It also allows law enforcement to remove guns from people considered a danger to themselves or others.

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The law additionally allows funds that will enhance school security and mental health treatment.

Sgt. Jason Schmittendorf of the Pinellas County Sheriff’s Office said: “Roughly 200 firearms have been confiscated in the state since the law was enacted and around 30,000 rounds of ammunition were also taken.”

Most of the risk-protection cases have involved people with histories of mental illness who threatened to hurt themselves.

Pinellas County Sheriff Bob Gualtieri said: “It’s a constitutional right to bear arms, and when you are asking the court to deprive somebody of that right, we need to make sure we are making good decisions, right decisions and the circumstances warrant it.”

Every petition filed under the order in Pinellas County has so far been granted by a judge.

Under the new law, Jerron Smith was the first to have his gun confiscated in April.

Authorities took the Army vet’s AR-15 semiautomatic rifle, .22 caliber rifle, hundreds of rounds of ammunition, a bump stock and numerous other weapon-related items when he refused to surrender them.

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Thirteen states currently have red flag laws in place.