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Tuesday, November 12, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Election Center

Initiative 1491, court orders barring gun access

For the second time in three years, supporters of tougher gun laws are asking Washington voters to approve a law they couldn’t get through the Legislature.
Initiative 1491 would create a new type of court order in the state, allowing judges to require people who’ve been determined to be at “extreme risk” of danger to themselves or others to surrender any guns they have and bar them from buying more.
The protection orders are patterned after domestic violence protection orders, but instead of a spouse or partner, they would allow other family members or law enforcement to go to court. A temporary order of up to 14 days could be issued without the subject present if the court were to receive enough evidence of imminent danger, but the full one-year order would require a hearing where the subject is required to be present with legal counsel. A new round of hearings would be required to renew the order after the year is up.
Filing a false statement to obtain an extreme-risk protection order would be a gross misdemeanor. Violating an order would be a gross misdemeanor the first two times but a felony the third time.

Election results

Option Votes Pct
Yes 1,995,350 69.72%
No 866,657 30.28%

Related coverage

Our advice: Yes on I-1491; no on I-1501

Initiative 1491. This measure would give loved ones and law enforcement a speedy way to petition a court to have a gun removed from someone who poses harm to themselves and others. Advocates tried to get the Legislature to adopt “extreme risk protection orders,” but like most gun issues, lawmakers would rather bury them than take a vote. I-594, the background check measure, was easily passed by voters after legislators failed to act.

Elway poll: Voters split on November intiatives

Three of six ballot initiatives in the November election would fail if voting were held today, a new poll suggests.

Gun control measure headed for ballot

Initiative 1491, which would allow police and family members to request a judge to issue protective orders to keep dangerous people from having or buying firearms, will be on the November ballot.

Two more initiatives turn in signatures, likely will make ballot

I-1501 and I-1464 turn in petitions before the Friday afternoon deadline with enough signatures they are likely to make the November ballot.

Gun control measure has 330,000 signatures, supporters say

Supporters of Initiative 1491 turned in their first batch of signed petitions Thursday, saying that by Friday afternoon they will submit a total of 330,000 signatures.

Minimum wage, gun control and transgender bathroom rules among initiatives that could make ballot

From wages to guns to restroom access, ballot measure topics for voter cover a wide spectrum of issues in Washington this year. To have a chance of making the ballot, signatures on petitions must be turned in by week’s end.