Proposed bill would reward states that allow police to seize gun - WNEM TV 5

Proposed bill would reward states that allow police to seize guns from potentially dangerous people

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WASHINGTON, DC (WNEM) -

Four U.S. Representatives, including two from Michigan, introduced a bill that would provide grants to states that adopt laws that enable police officers to seize firearms from people they deem dangerous.

The bill, named the Jake Laird Act, was named after an Indianapolis police officer who was killed in 2004 by a man who struggled with mental illness, according to a press release by the U.S. Reps.

After Laird was killed, Indiana passed a law in 2005 that enabled officers to seize firearms with probable cause from individuals they determined to be a danger to themselves or others.

U.S. Reps. Debbie Dingell, Susan Brooks, Ted Deutch and Fred Upton introduced the bill on Wednesday.

It would provide grants to states that adopt similar laws to Indiana’s.

“We have a responsibility to come together – Democrats and Republicans – to keep our schools and communities safe,” Dingell said. “In the weeks since the horrific shooting in Parkland, Florida, I have met with law enforcement, prosecutors, mental health experts, the ACLU, students, teachers, parents, and other stakeholders to find common ground. One of the biggest takeaways from these conversations is that we need to provide family members and law enforcement the tools needed when they know someone is a threat to themselves or others. The Jake Laird Act builds on a successful Indiana law to help provide local law enforcement – who are on the frontlines of responding to these crises – with the resources necessary to act before warning signs escalate into tragedies, all while protecting due process.”

Upton said it will encourage states “to adopt common-sense ‘Red Flag’ laws.”

“We’ve been successful in getting bipartisan legislation passed to improve our background check system, increase funding for mental health, and billions for school safety programs. These efforts will make a real difference. The Jake Laird Act will be yet another tool in our law enforcement tool box. And my focus is on making sure they also have the proper training to make the proper decisions to prevent dangerous individuals from using firearms to harm themselves or others,” Upton said.

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