If the abuser's gun is taken away as part of my restraining order, what will happen to it?
If the abuser is ordered to surrender his/her firearms as part of your restraining order, the judge will order him/her to surrender the possession of the firearm(s) to:
- someone who is not related to the defendant by blood, marriage, and is not an intimate partner* (and this person is prohibited by law from returning the firearms to the abuser at any point while the restraining order is still valid);**
- the Rhode Island state police or local police department; or
- a licensed gun dealer.*
If the abuser is present at the restraining order hearing, s/he must surrender of the firearms within twenty-four hours of the judge issuing the order. If the abuser is not present at the hearing, s/he has forty-eight hours after being served with the order to surrender the firearms. If the abuser chooses to surrender the firearms to someone s/he knows or to a licensed gun dealer, s/he has to file a receipt with the court within 72 hours, showing that firearms were surrendered.*
* RI Gen Laws §§ 8-8.1-3(d); 15-15-3(d)
** RI Gen Laws §§ 8-8.1-3(b); 15-15-3(b)