BALTIMORE (WJZ) — A new “red flag” law could take guns out of the hands of those who present a danger in a state recently plagued by mass shootings.
“If there hadn’t been a gun. it would have been an opportunity for her to be get help and she would still be here,” said Janice Uthe, whose daughter Amanda shot herself.READ MORE: Man Shot, Critically Wounded In East Baltimore Saturday, Baltimore Police Say
Those who have lost loved ones to gun violence gathered in Annapolis as Maryland’s “red flag” law went into effect. The purpose is to take guns out of the hands of people threatening violence against themselves or others, provided it’s reported by either a relative, other household residents, like roommates, or health care professionals.
Prior to the new law, even if police were notified, they had no jurisdiction to seize guns based on a call from a worried family member.
“We will have this additional tool that will allow the proactive removal of firearms before a scene becomes potentially dangerous or fatal,” said Montgomery County Police Chief J. Thomas Manger.READ MORE: Fort McHenry Celebrates New Citizens, Defenders Day Saturday
Which is what happened earlier this year when a gunman murdered five people in the newsroom of The Capital Gazette in Annapolis.
“We don’t have a crystal ball to know if this had been enacted it would have prevented the tragedy at the Gazette, but we do know that going forward in Maryland, this piece of legislation will save lives,” Delegate Geraldine Valentino Smith added.
Uthe just hopes this stops countless others from sharing her heartache.
“That there will be other people that will be spared the heartache that me and my family and friends have gone through following her death,” sais Uthe..MORE NEWS: Man In Stable Condition After He Was Shot In Face While Driving Early Saturday