Exposing New York’s ‘Red Flag’ Gun Law


UTICA–Under the state’s new ‘Red Flag’ gun law, law enforcement, family members and school officials can petition the state supreme court to have someone’s guns confiscated or to block them from buying one.

“…I want to hear it right then.”

State Supreme Court Justice Bernadette Clark, 5th Judicial District, on the ‘urgent’ nature these petitions pose upon filing.

According to the law, a judge can issue a “temporary extreme risk protection order” after a petition is filed; thereafter having the ability to order if a respondent’s weapons should be confiscated and/or whether to block them from buying a gun.

The law surrounds those who threaten an act of violence against oneself or others.

A hearing must be held within three days of the ‘temporary’ order–upon which, the respondent can make their case before a ‘final extreme risk protection order is made.’

“At the hearing when a final order is going to be issued, the standard goes from ‘probable cause,’ to ‘clear and convincing evidence….'” “…also in this law is a provision that, even if the judge denies the order, there is still the right to a hearing; which I think is also very good.”

NYS Supreme Court Justice Bernadette Clark

State Supreme Court Justice Bernadette Clark says the ‘final’ order can last for up to one year, and a respondent can ask for a modification of the judge’s order–one time.

“The person could ask to get their weapons back as well and–if warranted–the court has the ability and power, under certain circumstances, to do that,” Judge Clark said.

This article is in continuation of a previous Eyewitness News report with State Supreme Court Justice Bernadette Clark; discussing how the ‘Red Flag’ law will be handled in court. That report can be accessed below.

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