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Weld County declares themselves a 'second amendment sanctuary county'

Weld joins the list of a growing number of Colorado counties who are against the proposed Red Flag Bill.

WELD COUNTY, Colo — Weld County Board of Commissioners met today on Mar. 6 to declare themselves as a “Second Amendment Sanctuary County.” 

The decision comes in response to the Red Flag Bill, known as HB 19-1177. This bill would allow family members, household members or law enforcement to petition a judge to remove firearms from an individual they deem dangerous to themselves or other, according to the Colorado General Assembly.

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“The issue isn’t an issue of safety as much as it is an issue of protecting the constitutional rights of citizens,” said Weld County Commissioner Chair Barbara Kirkmeyer.

Weld County Commissioners affirmed their support for the Weld County Sheriff in the “exercise of his sound discretion to not enforce against any citizen an unconstitutional firearms law”.

“Case after case has affirmed the second amendment of the constitution,” said Weld County Commissioner Scott James. “Taking constitutional rights away from citizens under the guise that it is for the ‘greater good’ is a very dangerous path to walk down, and one we do not support.”

The bill is backed by numerous gun control groups, including one founded by former Arizona U.S. Rep. Gabby Giffords, who was severely wounded in 2011 shooting, and survivors of the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary massacre in Newtown, Connecticut.

"This is the first step to move forward on a solution that is geared at trying to help people in crisis and confront the epidemic of gun violence that's had a significant impact on the state of Colorado," said House Majority Leader Alec Garnett, a co-sponsor along with first-term Rep. Tom Sullivan. 

Sullivan's son, Alex, was killed while celebrating his 27th birthday in the 2012 Aurora movie theater shooting. 

A number of law enforcement officials support the effort, including Tony Spurlock, sheriff of suburban Douglas County, who said he lost a deputy in a 2017 New Year's Eve shooting by a suspect who was exhibiting increasingly erratic behavior. The bill is named after the deputy, Zackari Parrish. 

Deputy Zackari Parrish

The bill also would leave it up to the person whose guns were seized to prove at any point that he or she no longer poses a risk.

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