It may be necessary in some cases to remove the right to bear arms from a person who has indicated they are at a high risk of using a firearm against themselves or another person. Under Colorado’s Red Flag Law, family members and law enforcement can take steps to help protect their loved one and others from harm.
Unfortunately, this law also allows the right to bear arms to be removed from innocent people or people who are not at risk of harming themselves or others. Here’s what to know about this law, how Extreme Risk Protection Orders work, and how to oppose them to keep your legal rights intact.
What Is an Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO)?
An Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO) is a legal option that permits police officers or relatives to request a judge to temporarily take weapons away from someone who represents a threat to themselves or others. The person is also restricted from buying guns for the duration of the ERPO.
Who Can Apply for an ERPO?
Under Colorado’s Red Flag laws, a person’s family or members of the household, as well as police officers, can file a petition with the court for an extreme risk protection order. This includes anybody who is associated with the defendant by marriage, birth, or adoption, the defendant’s ex-spouse or partner, the defendant’s parent or legal guardian, the other parent of the defendant’s child, or anyone who has been in a partnership with the defendant in the last six months.
How to Fight an Extreme Risk Protection Order In Colorado
The burden of proof to establish that a defendant is a risk to themselves or others is on the person who filed the petition. Half the evidence presented or more must show that the defendant is a risk in order for the ERPO to be issued. To oppose such an order, you can provide your own evidence that shows you are not a risk, ideally enough that outweighs any evidence the claimant brings forward.
Contact a Denver Criminal Defense Lawyer Today
If a family member or police officer has filed an Extreme Risk Protection Order against you in Colorado, it’s critical that you reach out to an experienced criminal defense attorney who can work zealously to protect your rights.
Call Richard B. Huttner at 303-595-4342. Serving Denver, CO and the surrounding suburbs of Aurora, Englewood, Littleton, Lakewood, Centennial, and more.