June 1, 2021 In the News

Washington voters led much of the nation in saying guns must sometimes be seized to prevent violence. How’s the law working?

“It’s a scalpel, not a hammer.

That’s how Eric Pisconski, the acting lieutenant of the Seattle Police Department’s Crisis Response Unit, thinks of the state law that allows law enforcement officers and family or household members to petition a superior court judge for an extreme risk protection order, commonly known as an ERPO.

It’s a two-stage, civil legal process to remove guns from peoples’ possession and prevent them from purchasing or having access to new firearms for one year.

“You’re looking at an imminent threat. We’re more concerned about threatening or violent behavior and it can be to yourself or other people,” Pisconski said. “ERPO is designed for a small niche of the population that doesn’t fall into another category that would prohibit their eligibility” to legally possess firearms.”

Read the full story by Sara Jean Green and Joseph O’Sullivan in the Seattle Times.