A new California law scheduled to take effect Friday will allow the police to seize private, legally-owned weapons for up to three weeks without charges or allowing the citizen to contest the seizure.
AB1014 was passed last year in the wake of 2014’s Isla Vista shooting, where teenager Elliot Rodger went on a rampage near the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara, killing six people along with himself.
Rodger’s parents had reported him to the police prior to the shooting, concerned about his mental health and rants he posted online. But after meeting with Rodger, police decided he wasn’t a criminal risk, and consequently didn’t search his apartment, where he was stockpiling weapons and ammunition.
The new law is intended to stop such a situation from re-occurring. Under the law, a judge has the power to grant a restraining order telling police to seize a person’s guns, based solely on accounts from family members or police that the person is poses an imminent danger to others. The restraining order can be granted without the affected person knowing it exists or being allowed time to contest it.
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