DOJ Creates National Extreme Risk Protection Order Resource Center

by Tommy Grant

So-called “red-flag” laws, also known as Extreme Risk Protection Orders (ERPOs), might sound good in theory, but so far these laws that have been passed in a number of states violate the due process rights of citizens of those states. In fact, in most cases a person who is the subject of one of these orders can have his firearms confiscated with no advance notice, leaving him to prove in a sometimes much-later court hearing that he isn’t a danger and shouldn’t have had his right to arms infringed. Alas, that hasn’t stopped the Biden Administration from making the passage of such laws, both federally and at the state level, a priority—despite the constitutional objections.

Over the weekend, Vice President Kamala Harris visited Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and announced the creation of the National Extreme Risk Protection Order Resource Center, which will be funded by taxpayers—many of them gun owners that could fall prey to such laws—to the tune of $750 million.

“Red-flag laws are simply designed to allow communities a vehicle through which they can share, and have somewhere to share it, information about the concern about the potential danger or the crying out for help of an individual and then let’s give it to them before tragedy occurs,” Harris said. “Part of why I am here today is to challenge every state to pass a red-flag law.”

According to a Department of Justice (DOJ) press release, the resource center, which will be managed by the DOJ’s Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA),  will “provide training and technical assistance to law enforcement officials, prosecutors, attorneys, judges, clinicians, victim service and social service providers, community organizations, and behavioral health professionals responsible for implementing laws designed to keep guns out of the hands of people who pose a threat to themselves or others.”


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“Through the center and its newly launched website, states, local governments, law enforcement, prosecutors, attorneys, judges, clinicians, victim service providers, and behavioral health and other social service providers will have direct access to critical information that will enhance their ability to reduce firearm homicides and suicides,” the release stated. “The website will be maintained and updated to include newly developed resources for the field created through the Center, in partnership with BJA. The website also provides a platform for the Center to highlight emerging and promising practices in successful ERPO implementation and connect states and localities to innovative strategies to reduce gun violence and save lives.”

Even if you set aside the constitutional objections, which many states have done, the red-flag laws already in existence haven’t seen much success. California adopted such a law in 2014, but Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) statistics show the state to be a perennial top five in “active shooter incidents.” In fact, in 2021 California topped the list in that category.

Maine is another prime example. Maine had an ERPO law (theirs is called a “yellow-flag law”) in effect last year when a crazed man murdered 18 people at a bowling alley and bar in Lewiston, Maine.  In the months and weeks leading up to that mass murder, the killer showed so many warning signs that people all around him were raising concerns to authorities.


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Besides the failures to disarm those who truly are murderous, mistreatment of those who are wrongly accused is equally alarming. We’ve chronicled in the past how red-flag laws can endanger your family and also devastate your finances. The Biden Administration’s push to have such laws instituted in more states will likely have a devastating effect on many lawful gun owners and their families. Firearms News is currently working on an in-depth analysis of the new federal resource center, so keep an eye out here for more important information.


About the Author

Freelance writer and editor Mark Chesnut is the owner/editorial director at Red Setter Communications LLC. An avid hunter, shooter and political observer, he has been covering Second Amendment issues and politics on a near-daily basis for nearly 25 years. 

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