Sponsored Content: Maryland lawmakers have passed legislation that would allow the court to enter an “extreme risk protective order,” which would allow authorities to seize the weapons of any individual temporarily when it is shown that the person poses an imminent threat of harm to themselves or to others.
“These laws are known as “red flag” laws, and are designed to head off situations such as the Parkland school shooting, or closer to home, shootings like the one that occurred in an Annapolis newsroom recently,” said Kush Arora, a Columbia criminal law attorney who specializes in gun crimes with the law firm Price Benowitz, LLP. It allows spouses, roommates, guardians, significant others, and blood relatives, along with licensed doctors, psychologists, and social workers, to file petitions with the court that outline the current mental health status of the individual and why he or she present an immediate danger to themselves or to others. If the court agrees with the petition, they can enter an extreme risk protective order, which may authorize the seizure of the individual’s firearms while also authorizing his or her involuntary commitment for evaluation.
Before this year, only California, Connecticut, Indiana, Oregon, and Washington had red flag laws on the books. Twenty other states are considering them. The loss of possession of a firearm under Maryland’s version of the law is not permanent; firearms must be returned to the individual from whom they were taken anytime they are requested by the individual, provided that at least two weeks have passed since the order terminated.
This law gives concerned friends and family one more tool with which to stop gun violence before it starts, whether against them or against others. Seeking to have a family member taken into custody is not an enjoyable prospect, but it creates a valuable tool for the protection of that individual and others.
About the sponsor: Columbia criminal defense lawyer Kush Arora of Price Benowitz LLP defends those facing criminal charges with a detail-oriented approach. Mr. Arora ensures his clients stay well informed and satisfied with their defense strategy. Attorney Arora has served as an officer on the South Asian Bar Association. This sponsored content is provided by Maryland criminal defense attorney Kush Arora with Price Benowitz LLP.
The material published in this article is sponsored content and not a product of the Baltimore Fishbowl editorial team. Any opinions expressed in this material do not necessarily represent the views of Baltimore Fishbowl.