Domestic Violence Protection Orders and Orders to Surrender Firearms

Client: King County Prosecutor’s Office

Facilitated a countywide, multiagency work group to identify ways to improve implementation of the state’s firearm surrender laws in all 39 jurisdictions of King County. The work group included representatives of the King County Sheriff’s Office and Prosecutor’s Office, the Seattle Police Department and City Attorney’s Office, other area law enforcement agencies in King County, and domestic violence advocates. Tasks included conducting key-person interviews; collecting and reviewing policies and procedures of local law enforcement agencies; researching national best practices; and preparing agendas, meeting materials and summaries for work group meetings. Helped the work group develop the following recommendations: a sample Model Policy for the processing, service and enforcement of Protection Orders and Orders to Surrender Weapons; the creation of a regional unit, including job descriptions, to serve and enforce these orders; a risk assessment tool to help law enforcement agencies identify high risk Protection Orders; a sample MOU that can be used between and among jurisdictions participating in the regional unit; and a final report. Assisted with presentations of the model policies to: regional law, law enforcement, and domestic violence organizations, and to King County Board of Health. (2016 – present)

Results: Work group participants and project staff briefed elected officials. The King County Council unanimously approved the Executive’s 2017 budget request to help form the regional team, which the work group had recommended. The King County Police Chiefs and Sheriff Association has reviewed the Model Policy with the intent to adopt it as best practices for their members.