Woman Gets Her Legal Gun Back After New Colorado Law Forced Indirect Confiscation

Matt Vespa
By Matt Vespa | May 21, 2014 | 4:42 PM EDT

The gun police indirectly confiscated from Sara Warren will finally be returned her, ending an arduous legal odyssey thanks to Colorado's new gun laws. reported earlier that Warren works as a maid and carried a firearm for personal protection.  She got into an automobile accident, which required the Fort Collins police to take possession of her gun.

Colorado's new transfer laws required she undergo a background check before police could transfer her legally-purchased Ruger SR9 handgun, but the station doesn't have a Federal Firearms License (FFL) - since police stations don't sell guns.

Additionally, there were no personnel with a FFL to conduct the background check. So, ever since March 25, 2014, her firearm has been in the possession of law enforcement.

Sheriff Smith noted his displeasure with the situation. "I'll risk being in noncompliance with the law before I'm keeping somebody's property we have no right to keep," Smith said.  Now, this episode in indirect gun confiscation is over, but why it took so long remains confidential. (via Fox 31 Denver):

Fort Collins Police issued this statement: "Fort Collins Police Services has instituted temporary measures and is working to find a permanent solution in order to comply with the law."


Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith said this is why he and more than four dozen other Colorado Sheriffs are suing the state over the 2013 gun control laws. "What happened to Sara is exactly the danger in the way this thing is written," he said.

But, Sheriff Smith says Larimer County hasn't had this problem returning property because they're going directly through the Colorado Bureau of Investigation. "They told us, send the information to us and we will conduct the NICS check."

As for why it took Fort Collins police so long to return Warren's gun to her, the department wouldn't say, only that it was advised by the Fort Collins City Attorney on how to enforce this new law. The City Attorney said its advice is confidential.