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Posted: 8/23/2001 9:58:44 AM EDT
[url]http://www.fosters.com/news2001c/august/20/do0820k.htm[/url] DOVER — Police are seizing and storing more guns today because of changes in laws and attitudes regarding domestic violence. "When we serve protective orders to defendants, we’ll have to make all efforts to seize the weapons. That’s what causes a lot of the influx," Lt. Anthony Colarusso said. Colarusso heads the Dover Police Department’s Special Investigations Unit and Anti-Stalking Unit, which is charged with investigating many cases of domestic violence. The Police Department is currently holding more than 100 firearms, bows and arrows, BB guns and other weapons. Some are held as evidence in criminal cases, but Colarusso said the majority were seized as a result of protective orders. City Prosecutor George Wattendorf, who has written numerous articles on domestic violence and lectured on the topic for the FBI and Scotland Yard, said new domestic violence laws in New Hampshire went into effect Jan. 1, 2000. District court judges may order weapons seized when a temporary restraining order is served. A full restraining order, which lasts for a year, requires the judge to seize weapons. Wattendorf said the Brady Bill legislation, through background checks, also prevents any person with an active restraining order from purchasing weapons. Weapons seizures have been at the center of controversy in the Executive Council, which has tabled Gov. Jeanne Shaheen’s nomination of a judge for the Gorham District Court. Executive Councilor David Wheeler of Milford, a board member of Gun Owners of New Hampshire, has said he objects to the nomination of Thomas Rappa for the post because Rappa supports taking firearms when temporary restraining orders are issued. Wattendorf said there is some discretion allowed with temporary orders, but it is his experience that judges will take the guns in almost all cases. Rep. Bill Knowles, D-Dover, sponsored the 2000 package of domestic violence legislation. In his position on the Criminal Justice Committee, Knowles said he has seen that 47 percent of homicides in the state were domestic related. Knowles is a gun owner himself, but he said it only makes sense to seize weapons when issuing a temporary restraining order. "That’s really the most dangerous time, when the temporary restraining order is issued," Knowles said. Colarusso explained that after an emergency order is issued, a hearing must take place within two weeks. Once a case is resolved or a protective order has lapsed, a person must get a court order to release the weapons, Colarusso said. In most cases, the defendant turns over weapons voluntarily. But Colarusso said police sometimes have to obtain search warrants to take the guns. "We’ve had people who have been collectors or avid hunters and we’ve seized dozens of guns off one person," Colarusso said. The serial numbers of all seized weapons are checked through a national computer system to make sure they are not stolen. The seized property is purged after a time and the Police Department must obtain a court order to destroy weapons if no one has a legal claim to them. In the meantime, Colarusso said the department must maintain the weapons in their original condition for the owner. The weapons are maintained in a secured vault at the Police Department in City Hall.
Link Posted: 8/23/2001 10:08:35 AM EDT
And the beat goes on.....
Link Posted: 8/23/2001 10:33:03 AM EDT
Link Posted: 8/23/2001 10:35:36 AM EDT
Millions and 1. I have my firearms specifiaccly to use against those people who want to take them away from me. No other reason.
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