Lawmakers propose new “red flag” gun laws

Local News

With the recent shootings in Ohio and Texas, state lawmakers are pushing for new regulations to help prevent future mass shootings.

On Monday, Gov. Evers called on the legislature to pass a universal background check bill and a red flag law that would make it easier to take guns away from people believed to be a danger to themselves or others.

Wisconsin Representative Jodi Emerson says that she has been in several meetings discussing the new measures.

“We certainly have renewed the talks based on the mass shootings that happened over the weekend in Texas and Ohio,” Emerson said. “I think it is also something we need to talk about based off the shooting in Lake Hallie and Chippewa just last week”

Red flag laws are gun violence prevention measures that permit police or family members to petition a state court.

The court could order the temporary removal of firearms from a person who may present a danger to others or themselves.

Emerson says other states have passed similar measures.

“We are looking at what some states have done, what other states have done in the past and trying to learn from their successes and their failures,” she said. “We’re going to be looking at a new version of that.”

Sheriff James Kowalczyk says red flag laws can assist in preventing tragedies before they happen.

“Anything that would assist law enforcement in solving crime, preventing crime, and targeting individuals,” Kowalczyk said. “Information is very valuable. Information can sometimes make or break a case. Information sometimes, can prevent a tragic situation from happening.”

Kowalczyk also said that while red flag laws are another tool to utilize, every law has its limits.

“The red flag law is again a tool that law enforcement can use, but in this case a week ago in Chippewa County; these weapons did not belong to the perpetrator.”

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