GOP Pushing Gun Grab In Pa. — Virtue-Signaling Philly Suburban Republicans — Delco’s Tom Killion (R-9) in the Senate and Montco’s Todd Stephens (R-151) — have introduced bills that would arguably allow permanent loss of gun rights on the basis of mere allegations.
The bills SB 90 and HB 1075 would amend Titles 18 (Crimes and Offenses) and 42 (Judiciary and Judicial Procedure) of the Pennsylvania Consolidated Statutes creating the category of Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPO).
An ERPO would be a court order that would prohibit a person from having in the person’s possession or control, purchasing or receiving or attempting to purchase or receive, a firearm, based upon a finding that the person presents a risk of suicide or of causing the death of, or serious bodily injury to, another person.
Fine. So how does one get subject to such a thing?
Upon the word of a law enforcement officer or a family or household member. They tell a district judge that you considered suicide or were cruel to a dog or made a threat and you lose your rights, whether you did such a thing or not.
You really think a district judge is going to say no?
There is a duration limit to the ERPO — from three months to a year — but as Joshua Prince points out the ERPO puts you in a federal database and that makes you subject to the feds which is in effect a life-long ban.
Here’s is the wording of the law: Entry into database.–Upon receipt of an extreme risk protection order or an order renewing, vacating or terminating an extreme risk protection order, the Pennsylvania State Police shall cause the order to be entered into the appropriate database so that notice of the order is provided through the Pennsylvania Instant Check System and the Federal Bureau of Investigation National Instant Criminal Background Check System.
How about the termination part?
At a termination hearing, the respondent seeking termination of the order shall have the burden of proving, by clear and convincing evidence, that the respondent does not present a risk of suicide or of causing the death of, or serious bodily injury to, another person
So much for presumption of innocence.
We have some sympathy — or at least we would if we didn’t think they were pandering virtue-signalers — for those trying to deal with loons having access to guns.
We remember Sylvia Seegrist. We remember her mom desperately trying to get her help — and off the street.
The thing with Sylvia, though, is that she committed chargeable crimes such as assault, terroristic threats and vandalism before her murder spree but escaped prosecution due to the bizarre mental health theories of the time.
If ERPOs were based on the commission of crime for which one is charged as opposed to someone’s word, we’d back the concept.
By the way, most of the recent mass shooters could have been or had been charged with crimes before their killings that should have curtailed their access to guns. Nickolas Cruz had had numerous contacts with police, Devin Patrick Kelley had a record of domestic violence, Dylan Roof had drug and trespassing arrests etc.
Another point, gun rights are as important as voting rights. Some people should not be allowed to have a gun. These same people should not be allowed to vote.