Since 2014, Washington state law has required individuals served with domestic violence protection orders to give their weapons to police; however, most were not obeying these court orders. In 2016, 56% of firearm surrender orders in Seattle were completely ignored.  A $1 million appropriation from the City of Seattle and King County allowed for the creation of the Regional Domestic Violence Firearms Enforcement Unit to improve compliance with firearm surrender orders. The Unit consists of 12 people, including Seattle Police Department officers, King County Sheriff’s Office deputies, a Seattle Assistant City Attorney, and King County Deputy Prosecutors, paralegals, and victim advocates. The Unit manages the data entry, service, tracking, and enforcement of the surrender orders as well as the receipt, storage, and return of surrendered firearms across King County. The dedicated staff meet regularly to review surrender orders from the court and target the most urgent cases.

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