ICYMI: Washington Post: California Agents Are On The Hunt For Targeted Guns

Monday, February 26, 2018
Contact: (415) 703-5837, agpressoffice@doj.ca.gov

By Scott Wilson

Senior Special Agent Sam… Richardson runs a six-person team of California Justice Department agents who are coming for your guns, but only if you no longer have the legal authority to own one in this state that has tightened firearm laws in increments over the years.

… The division is the only law enforcement agency in the country assigned specifically to track down and take guns from felons, the mentally ill and others whose Second Amendment rights have been curtailed in court because of public safety concerns. That is, the people who even the National Rifle Association says should not have guns, a statement echoing in the aftermath of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. The program makes California’s gun-control policy perhaps the most aggressive in the nation.

A dozen years ago, the state set up a database that flags law enforcement officials when a registered gun owner is convicted of a felony, deemed mentally ill, has received a restraining order or committed one of about 37 qualifying misdemeanors.

The list is known as the Armed Prohibited Persons System, and while it has failed to prevent mass shootings in San Bernardino, Isla Vista and other cities in the state, it has taken tens of thousands of guns out of the hands of people prohibited from having them.

There are 10,226 people on the list statewide. Of those, about 2,000 are in Los Angeles County, a vast urban desert covered by only Richardson’s team and one other.

Last year, state Justice Department agents seized 3,999 pistols and long guns, investigating more than 8,500 people in the process. The list has never dipped beneath 10,000 people since its earliest days.

“All of this takes time and real resources,” said Xavier Becerra (D), California’s attorney general, who said he is requesting more money for the program this year. “As quickly as we get these guns off the street, others are getting guns.”

Read the full article here.


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