DENVER – When Deputy Zackari Parrish was killed during an ambush on New Years Eve all of Colorado grieved.
However those emotions did not get the Zackari Parrish Violence Prevention Act passed at the State Capitol earlier this year.
The bill, which would have allowed family members and law enforcement officers to go before judges and request guns be temporarily taken away from individuals who pose risks, failed in the Republican controlled state Senate.
With a new crop of politicians set to enter the Capitol in January, FOX31 was curious where do the top candidates stand on red flag laws-which are also known as extreme risk protection orders?
Mental Health Colorado has conducted a survey of major candidates for office and there support for Red Flag Laws.
You can read their entire survey here, however some major candidates left the question of extreme risk protection blank. As a result FOX31 Political Reporter Joe St. George set out to find out their positions in a series of interviews.
The Republican Nominee for Governor left the question blank on the Mental Health Colorado survey, but Stapleton tells FOX31 “I support the spirit of red flag laws.”
When pressed by St. George whether he supported the Zachari Parrish Violence Prevention Act, Stapleton said he did not.
“No I didn’t because it was rushed, and if you talk to folks from the Colorado Sheriffs Association, and I would say there was a lot of division in that group of law enforcement officials – who are actually on the front lines – about whether due process was going to be evenly applied,” Stapleton said.
Jared Polis answered the survey by saying he would work with the Colorado General Assembly to pass red flag laws.
Polis tells FOX31 however he would work to get the legislation right and not rush it through.
“I want to make sure we get this law right it doesn’t mean we are going to pass it the first day but I think in the first few weeks or months there should be a discussion about what’s the process when somebody’s mental health crisis has ended there rights are fully restored,” Polis said.
Democrat Phil Weiser and Republican George Brauchler prove this issue can be a bipartisan one. Weiser and Brauchler are both in support of red flag laws.
“Gun safety is a critical issue to me – I have spoken to a lot of high school students on the trail it’s the first issue they talk about,” Weiser said.
“We have done nothing of substance targeted to address the status quo that has again and again proven itself to be ineffective,” Brauchler said.