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December 13, 2007
Radio: Attorney General McKenna comments on restricting access to firearms by persons with mental health commitments

Seattle - Attorney General Rob McKenna joined King County prosecutor Dan Satterberg, David Weston from the DSHS Mental Health Division and Chief Vicky Stormo from the University of Washington’s police department in releasing a report outlining necessary improvements to restrict access to firearms by persons with mental health commitments.

Actuality #1:      
Washington state is a leader among the states that participate in national background check system.  We began working with federal authorities in 2003 and made an initial submission of 47,000 names into the background check database.   (15 seconds)

Actuality #2:
In fact, Washington is one of only four states that consistently submits mental health records to the national background check system. (8 seconds)

Actuality #3:
     Consistent with federal law, Washington’s firearm statute should be amended to prohibit individuals who have been involuntarily committed for 14 days from possessing a firearm. (12 seconds)

Actuality #4:
     Law enforcement needs better access to mental health records. Officers on the street have no immediate access to records that provide information about whether a person is restricted from    possessing a firearm due to mental health prohibitions, despite the fact that the legislature has granted law enforcement authority to access such information. (19 sconds)


Media Contact: J. Ryan Shannon, Media Relations Manager, (360) 753-2727



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