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D.C. Council passes ‘red flag’ gun bill and bans bump stocks


The D.C. Council on Tuesday approved a new law that would require police to seize weapons from people deemed a danger to themselves or to others, and to restrict gun owners from modifying weapons to fire faster or hold more bullets.

The bill has to go through congressional review and be signed by Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D), though the council enacted it as emergency legislation to allow the provisions to take effect immediately, and last 90 days.

Bowser, along with the police chief and the U.S. attorney for the District, objected to an immunity clause for people whose illegal guns are taken under the new law.

The gun seizure provision is called an “extreme-risk protective order” and is similar to other “red flag” laws now enacted in more than a dozen states.

The Public Defender Service objected to the law, saying it would allow police to seize guns without affording the owner proper notice or a court hearing.

The new law also bans bump stocks, an accessory that can accelerate the firing of semiautomatic weapons, and heightens penalties for possession of large-capacity gun magazines, which can allow a gun to hold hundreds of rounds of ammunition.



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