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Niagara County Legislature unanimously votes to call for repeal of Red Flag gun seizure law

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Wed, Feb 27th 2019 05:40 pm

The Niagara County Legislature unanimously voted on calling for the repeal of Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s Red Flag Bill – which members called a gun seizure law – through a resolution.

The bill is a gun violence prevention law that permits police, family members, teachers, doctors or any other concerned party to petition a state court to order the temporary removal of firearms from a person who may present a danger to others or themselves. A judge makes the determination to issue the order based on the statements and actions made by the gun owner in question.

The argument made by legislators in opposition of this law refers directly to the fact they believe it violates due process, as well as a person’s Second Amendment rights.

Majority Leader Randy Bradt, R-North Tonawanda, said, “This law is overly broad by allowing family members to make the request, which is defined to include anyone close to an individual who owns a firearm. This law violates the Second Amendment and due process rights of law-abiding gun owners, as it focuses solely on the removal of the firearms, and not on evaluating the individual or the truthfulness of the allegations.”

The county press release stated, “The rationale that the Red Flag law would prevent a potential criminal from harming the public is doubtful, due to the fact that criminals, by definition, do not abide by the law and use illegal means in which they obtain firearms, regardless of the temporary gun seizure that this law calls for.”

Niagara County Legislator John Syracuse, R-Newfane, said, “This is just another in a myriad of end-runs around the Second Amendment. It destroys a citizen’s right of due process.”

There are over 30,000 registered gun owners in Niagara County.

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