RI's Governor Signs 'Red Flag' Order That Bolsters Existing Gun Laws

Rhode Island's governor made a big hoopla on Monday about an executive order that just supports existing laws.

Providence, RI – The Rhode Island governor signed an executive order establishing a “red flag” policy that supports already-existing laws that allow authorities to remove firearms from people who have shown warning signs of violence, including making threats.

"The executive order I signed today is an immediate step we can take to make residents safer. It sets the table for a complementary legislative effort," said Governor Gina Raimondo, a Democrat, at a Monday press conference, according to ABC News.

"We cannot wait a minute longer for Washington to take action to prevent gun violence,” Raimondo said.

Connecticut, California, Washington, Oregon, and Indiana have already enacted similar laws, according to ABC News.

Rhode Island touted itself as the first state to take action since massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, but the governor’s executive order doesn’t give law enforcement any extra authority to confiscate guns, ABC News reported.

It directs authorities to use “all available legal steps” to take away firearms from people who have shown “warning signs” or made threats of violence online or in person, which was already the law.

The executive order was only a stopgap measure while some Rhode Island legislators worked to pass a “red flag” law that would give authorities more power to take away guns, The Washington Post reported.

Some local officials aren’t convinced passing a “red flag” law would be a good idea.

Four-term Cranston Mayor Allan Fung has said has concerns about the proposed “red flag bill.”

Fung, who is a Republican running for Rhode Island governor, said he agreed with the need to keep guns out of the hands of people with serious mental issues, but that he thought the proposed “red flag” legislation was too broad and didn’t protect the rights of gun owners, WPRI reported.

“Most importantly, there has to be some kind of trained medical professional in that process that provides that opinion, that solidifies that opinion and observations, and not just have it based on the sole observations of an officer at one point in time,” he said.

Raimondo hailed her executive order as a significant first step toward preventing gun violence after the Florida school shootings on Feb. 14, when a 19-year-old former student fatally shot 17 students and faculty, and wounded 14 more.

"The heartbreaking shooting in Parkland has once again proven that if the federal government won't act, states need to do more to prevent the gun violence that has become far too common," Raimondo said in a statement.

But Fung cautioned state lawmakers against rushing to pass the proposed bill into law, and said he thought a lot still had “to be fleshed out," WPRI reported.

Anti-gun groups heralded the governor’s announcement as a win.

"Today is a major victory for Rhode Islanders and an encouraging sign for people throughout the country as they demand lawmakers take concrete action to prevent gun violence," Shannon Watts, founder of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, said in a statement.

"This executive action can help save lives and prevent acts of gun violence, and it is urgent that the legislature act swiftly to pass comprehensive legislation to further empower family members and law enforcement to keep our communities safe,” Watts said.

Raimondo’s new executive order specifically directed state police to “assess all red flag reports,” warnings about potentially dangerous individuals, and take “whatever steps are legally available to remove guns” from those people – all things Rhode Island authorities were already supposed to be doing, The Herald-Tribune reported.

The governor’s directive also instructed Rhode Island’s health and education departments to create an educational public-awareness campaign to tell citizens what “red flags” to look for and how to respond to them.

Comments
No. 1-16
bronx163
bronx163

Its simple.
You make threats verbally, online, on paper, etc. if you show you are mentaly unstable, and exhibit mental illness, commit domestic assault or threats, your guns get removed. But to tell someone to go fuck themselves that should not be grounds to remove firearms.

Hi_estComnDenomn
Hi_estComnDenomn

@bronx163
That would account for just about all extremist groups, wouldn't it?

bronx163
bronx163

Are you the only one who reads my replies? LoL

Maybe. Threats are threats domestic violence is what it is. Mental illness is what it is. If that kid in fl had the cops come to his home and they checked to see he had guns on the time he menaced his brother, he would have been booked for domestic violence, menacing. All his guns removed the same day.
Its a must arrest in domestic violence in ny if you menace a spouce girlfriend, and or domestic partner. Not to mention this kid brought ammo to school the cops would of removed his guns for public safety reasons.
Florida sheriff dropped the ball and he will pay for it by losing his job, and being sued in wrongful death suit.

bronx163
bronx163

Correction meant if the menacing case sociopath had was in ny. It would be arrest that day in ny.

Hi_estComnDenomn
Hi_estComnDenomn

@bronx163
Haha I might ride your case often, but that doesn't mean I disagree with everything single thing you say. I agree about mental health and guns, but we can't just blanket mental health as the reason to take guns away. There are plenty cops and others in general that seek therapy or are on medication from something. Taking guns away from all those people is too far.

I don't have the answers, but I love sitting in the gray area. Should mental health be taken more seriously? Definitely. But MY OPINION is that there is room for sensible firearm control as well. And this is coming from someone in full support of basic gun rights.

You don't have to agree, but that's my gray area.