Colorado’s Newest Red Flag ERPO Bill Is Worse Than You Think : Rally for our Rights Colorado

Democrat state lawmakers have introduced a Red Flag Emergency Risk Protection Order (ERPO) bill into the 2019 Colorado legislative session. This bill, HB19-1177, which was introduced Thursday, February 14th, is far worse than a previously introduced bill which died in 2018.  Question everything you hear the media say about this legislation. The devil is in the details.

Here’s the claim of what this bill does:

A family member or law enforcement officer would petition a court to request the ability to immediately seize a person’s guns. If a judge signs the order, the weapons can be taken away and the court must hold a hearing within 14 days to determine whether to extend the seizure and bar the person from purchasing more firearms. The longest a judge could order the seizure of firearms is 364 days. The entire process is a civil, not criminal, proceeding.

Now let’s break down the bill language:

Who can petition the courts? 

According to the bill summary and media reports, only family or household members, and law enforcement can petition the courts. But what is the definition of “family member” and “household member”?

According to the bill language, “family or household member” means:

• Person related by blood, marriage, or adoption;

• Person who has a child in common with the respondent, regardless of whether such person has been married to the respondent or has lived together with the respondent at any time;

•  Person who regularly resides or regularly resided with the respondent within the last six months;

• Domestic partner of the respondent;

• Person who has a biological or legal parent-child relationship with the respondent, including stepparents and stepchildren and grandparents and grandchildren;

• Person who is acting or has acted as the respondent’s legal guardian;

• A person in any other relationship described in section 18-6-800.3 (2) with the respondent.  [So, what does 18-6-800.3 (2) say? “Intimate relationship” means a relationship between spouses, former spouses, past or present unmarried couples, or persons who are both the parents of the same child regardless of whether the persons have been married or have lived together at any time.]

Say what?!  This is who they define as a “family member” or “household member”?  This person doesn’t need to be either a family member or a household member.  We’re talking scorned ex’s, those pretending to be scorned ex’s, angry former roommates, those in custody disputes, and so on.  And that’s not even touching on law enforcement’s ability to petition for an ERPO.  Co-worker mad?  All they have to do is make a report to the police that you’re a danger to yourself or another, and they can have your firearms confiscated.

What is needed to file the ERPO petition?

The filing of the ERPO petition can be done either in person or over the phone.  The petition must be filed in the county court of where the accused lives – but since the petitioner can do it over the phone, they don’t even need to be in the same state.  There is NO filing fee.  The petitioner even has the option to not provide their address – for safety, of course – never mind the address could simply be left off any actual order as they do with temporary restraining orders.

Questions that will be asked on the petition include how many firearms the accused has, what types, and where the are located.  This doesn’t only include ownership – it also includes possession, custody, or control.  Petitioners are also asked to disclose if there are any other legal actions pending between parties, such as: current restraining orders, lawsuits, civil suits, custody cases, etc, but the existence of such cases shall not delay or prevent an ERPO from being granted.

And finally, no one is required to tell the accused that a petition is being filed or has been filed.

What happens after the ERPO petition is filed?

Once an ERPO is filed, a hearing will be set either the same day or the next day.  Once again, the petitioner does not need to be present. They can attend this hearing over the phone, while never being required to show proof of any relationship to the accused, and not even provide their address!  At this hearing, the petitioner will be asked to provide a “preponderance” of evidence with the goal being to convince the fact finder judge that there is a greater than 50% chance that the claim is true.  Now, remember, this is over the telephone.

What kind of evidence are they looking for?  A recent act or credible threat of violence, even if such act does not involve use of a firearm.  Self harm or threats of self harm within the past year.  A prior violation of a protection order.   A previous ERPO.   Prior domestic violence convictions.  Prior ARREST, not even conviction, of a whole host of other crimes.  Ownership, access to, or intent to purchase a firearm.  Drug or alcohol abuse.  Recent acquisition of a firearm or ammunition.  How do you provide this evidence during a telephone hearing?

At this hearing the court will either approve or deny the ERPO.  If it is denied, they must document reasoning for denial.  Judges will err on the side of caution.  Once the ERPO is approved, a warrant to search the home for weapons is also issued.  All while the only person who has no idea this is happening, is the person being accused of no crime.

How will the ERPO be enacted?

Once the ERPO and warrant are in hand, it’s time for the police to take action.  Considering we see SWAT teams show up to homes where someone is reported to possibly be suicidal, it won’t be pretty.  The county sheriff is required to work with city police.  They will show up at the door without so much as a warning, manually deliver the order, ask the accused to surrender their firearms, and if they refuse or claim to have none, they will search the home.  Honestly, even if firearms are surrendered, they will likely STILL search the home.  Did the petitioner make claim you have firearms at a place of business?  Expect that location to be included on the search warrant.  During this interaction, law enforcement is required to determine if the accused should be put into a 72 hour involuntary commitment hold.

It is not unlikely children, spouses, even co-workers will be present during these raids.

Once the firearms have been confiscated, the accused will be asked if they’d like to sell them, store them with law enforcement, or store them with a FFL.  The accused’s information will also be added to the CBI and NICS database prohibiting them from purchasing guns.

Along with the order that will be delivered upon the accused, a court date for 14 days later is given.  This will be the first opportunity the accused will have to speak on their own behalf.

What happens at the 14 day ERPO hearing? 

Prior to the hearing, the court will appoint an attorney or the accused can obtain their own or they can proceed self represented.  Because no one has been charged with a crime, these are civil cases, not criminal.  This means public defenders are not used, but instead the state would appoint one from a pool of attorneys who have agreed to work these cases.  These are not provided at no cost – unless you qualify as indigent according to the court.  It is unclear what the cost will be.

During this hearing the petitioner and the accused will have the ability to provide evidence, call witnesses, cross examine witnesses, etc.  The petitioner does not need to be present, and can provide sworn affidavits.

At the end of the hearing, the judge will either dismiss the ERPO, and the firearm rights of the accused will be restored and their guns returned.  Or the temporary ERPO will become a permanent ERPO.  This would mean it will remain in effect for 364 days.  The judge has the discretion to schedule hearings sooner than the 364 days if he or she believes the order should be lifted sooner.  The accused also has ONE opportunity during that 364 day period to request a hearing.  If they do request a hearing, the petitioner is alerted and that person can request it be denied.

What happens when the 364 days is up?

Whew, it’s been a long year by this point.  So what happens now?  The petitioner will be alerted that the ERPO is going to expire, and they can request it be extended.  If this happens, another hearing similar to the one at 14 days will take place.  And it begins again…

What are the penalties?

Any person who has in his or her custody or control a firearm or purchases, possesses, or receives a firearm with knowledge that he or she is prohibited from doing so by an ERPO or temporary ERPO is guilty of a class 2 misdemeanor.

What can you do to help stop this? Contact your state lawmakers and urge them to oppose this legislation.  CLICK HERE for information about who to contact.  

Watch the video below as we go line by line through this 30 page bill and highlight everything stated in this article.

Ready to help us fight this ERPO bill in Colorado?  Donate here

And get connected by subscribing to our email list and following us on social media.  Find us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and we even have a private Facebook group where you can connect with fellow gun rights activists.

31 thoughts on “Colorado’s Newest Red Flag ERPO Bill Is Worse Than You Think – And Gun Owners Should Be Worried

  1. PATRICIA ANTHONE says:

    A Constitutionally protected right can be summarily infringed on the SAY-SO of an angry Ex?

    Unbelievable!!!

    1. Infringed upon says:

      And who insisted that states adopt unconstitutional Red Flag laws after campaigning on a pro 2nd Amendment platform?

      Hint; He is presently in the Oval Office.

      Why?

      Please allow Kitty to explain.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mZYjgicQOJU

      1. Bill says:

        So, too bad we didn’t get Hillary, you say?

  2. Lance Touve says:

    Excellent job, Lesley. thanks for all the information.

  3. Debra Owens says:

    I don’t believe in this bill. Yo u won’t be safe if this goes through.

    1. Infringed upon says:

      Correction;
      If this bill goes through you won’t be safe and you will no longer have a Constitution.

      Let’s not loose sight of the bouncing ball folks!

      Know a scam when one presents itself and know you’re under attack when you see them coming for you.

  4. Richard says:

    Urge for a penalty to be imposed upon those proven during the hearing to have lodged a specious or false report.

    1. anonymous says:

      There is currently a penalty of perjury for anyone falsely accused.

      1. Richard says:

        What do you think are the odds that a false accused would ever be charged ? Perjury is often difficult to prosecute, esp with courts not wanting to dissuade people who ” feel” there was a firearm related threat. The current climate is to ” belidve” any claim made.
        See Kavanajgh, Covington, Smollet, a whole range of cases nationwide backing this climate.

  5. donna kergis says:

    a scorned hunters wife will love this

    1. Mike carver says:

      If this bill is passed you might as well throw out the rest of the constitution.we will have a Gestapo state.

  6. J J says:

    So the 2nd Amendment can be infringed. Lets do the same for the 1st Amendment & imposed ERPO’S on journalists who spread Fake News & quote unnamed sources.

    1. Infringed upon says:

      Sounds good but be realistic. The fake news producers are alphabet agencies which does also include the Info warrior AJ and talking heads associated with the theatrical show he produces as entertaining as it may be. You must understand that the conflict raging across America is prewritten and produced from a script by alphabet agencies and there is no such thing as uncorrupted news media. Propaganda is the root of war/conflict and there has never been a single battle where it was not deployed as a first affront. AJ is the alphabet agencies leader/manipulator for the alt right so alphabet can control all sides of the upcoming conflict to achieve their desired result which is control/power. Lenin once said, “the best way to control the opposition is to lead it ourselves”. Make no mistake about it regardless of which side you are on alphabet controls your leaders therefore remaining organic can be extremely difficult. Leaders on all sides are pitting Americans against each other for the conflict. It’s a game to settle us into the North American Union aka USMCA that Orangeman rammed us with. Next stop ahead civil war and full globalization per “The Plan”.

      Q Anon’s strategy Operation White Rabbit explained in one sentence.
      https://www.brighteon.com/6006984554001

      Welcome to the Great Deception.

      Know a scam when one presents itself.

  7. Ruth Moore says:

    This is so unconstitutional in every way, shape and form! Totally!

    1. Infringed upon says:

      Oh that’s nothing just watch this John Birch Society video showing how Trump is globalizing the USA into the New World Order with the USMCA which is why the gun grabbers are coming. Once you watch this video you will come to understand that Trump wall is a scam and that you’re being lied to across the board.

      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ff1uzBWQQW0

      Americans are being scammed out of their country and out of existence. You can go on FB and see the new caravan headed our way which is identical to the European one’s because Trump sold us out and now the border is wide open. Illegal immigration is ultimately legal thanks to Trumps help so enjoy your job now because they are headed here in the 10s of thousands to take it from you right this minute but don’t worry Trump will blame the Dem’s as always and proclaim it is beyond his control. I wonder what happens when you can no longer pay your rent or mortgage from loosing your jobs to illegal immigration? Oh, that’s right he tweeted the answer a little more than a month ago when he said “Americans will not go quietly into the night”. Translated this means you will be screaming in agony. Soon you will learn the hard way why the gun grab is on and I don’t think you’re going to like it.

      Know a scam when liars present them to you!

  8. Benjamin Strimpel says:

    This is the beginning of Nazism. Any reason given to take away our rights. First weapons then free speech. Socialism is rearing it’s ugly head. Look out free people you won’t be in years to come.

  9. Karen Taylor says:

    How do we stop this bill ?

    1. Lesley Hollywood says:

      Please consider attending the first committee hearing on Thursday, Feb 21st at 1:30 at the Colorado State Capitol: https://www.rallyforourrights.com/event/red-flag-erpo-first-legislative-hearing/

      Also contact the members of that committee which can also be found at the link I just provided.

    2. Karina montgomery says:

      Buy buy buy. Here we go western days.

      The first accusation of a real law abiding gun owning citizen will shatter this nation with blood, and regret.

      Guns. Guns. Guns.

    3. Mike n says:

      By gathering together in unity and telling law enforcement, that we the people will not go quitly into th night. LEO’s are violating their oath of office. That’s just the beginning. We might have to use force.

  10. Matt says:

    Due process of law requires that the accused has the right to confront one’s accusers PRIOR to being deprived of life, liberty, or property.

    So-called ‘Red Flag’ gun confiscation laws violate more than just the Second Amendment – they are an affront to the very concept of law.

  11. James walker says:

    I hope this bill Does not pass this is the democratic way of trying to control us sitizins I say Hell no to this bill.

  12. Darrell E Pool says:

    I do not support this bill or anyone who does. I am not happy about this at all.

  13. Stop this from happening to Colorado and the United States Constitution! STOP THE RED FLAG RULE NOW!

  14. Marcus Lee Padilla says:

    How can I 2nd amendment be infringed? Revolution war sounds in our kids future…

  15. Pat says:

    I wonder what these people would think of this proposed law if it applied to drunk driving and alcohol instead of guns. Take away someone’s car for a DUI, prohibit them from driving or buying alcohol. Turn them in because they had driven drunk in the past or were thinking of going to a party in the future ect…

  16. Dusty B says:

    They polled 0.07% of Registered Republicans in Colorado…if any of you have never read the book “How to lie with statistics”, you need to…

    1. Richard says:

      Today’s corporate , left wing media MSM isn’t about telling both sides of stories. All you get is some PC blurbs with no details .
      At least FOX is telling some truth about what’s happening nationally. If the socialists get all 3 branches of government, watch them move to silence that station .
      Go to complete Colorado.com for state news our local media won’t speak of, or twists to their advantage.

  17. Harold DePalma says:

    “How do you provide this evidence during a telephone hearing?”

    The Court has access to your criminal and mental health history entered into the state or national databases.

    This law pretty much tracks the current civil restraining order statute. If the final version of the law actually allows the reporting party to submit affidavits rather than appear in court for cross examination, the law will almost certainly violate the Confrontation Clause of the Constitution.

    1. Richard says:

      This bill is about creating fear, suppression of speech, and enabling law enforcement an easier avenue towards oppressing firearms owners. And They want no part of it.
      Since when is a generic judge an expert in human behavoid, or mental health ?
      Why should a citizen have to ” prove” they aren’t off in the head ?
      Zero requirement of a professional determination.
      Judges will err on the side of caution, and approve these based on today’s climate of, ” We have to believe the accuser” for ” safety sake”.
      Leaving you in a bundle of big, expensive trouble.
      Thanks Jared! You slimeball.

  18. Rez ipsa loqitor says:

    Anyone that has been falsely/wrongly accused can tell you what this law will do and how it works. In 1997 I had a neighbor that tried to get a restraining order against me and it was denied three times until he forged his wife’s name and that of her child, knowing that no judge would deny a woman or child’s request. The entire process for me took almost ten years and cost thousands.If someone is determined to destroy another persons life, heres a handy new tool. Interestingly, my accuser was himself a prohibited person, having been ordered to undergo a court ordered psychiatric evaluation in another court case. He has since changed his name and moved back to the state, look out Weld County. Good luck with this tangle of snakes.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *