Flanked by advocates for stricter gun control and supportive law enforcement officials at a signing ceremony, [New Mexico Gov. Michelle] Lujan Grisham said the [red flag] legislation provides law enforcement authorities with an urgently needed tool to deter deadly violence by taking firearms from people who pose a threat to themselves or others.
Some sheriffs from mostly rural areas opposed the bill in committee hearings as a violation of constitutional guarantees to due process, free speech and the right to bear arms. Public rallies were held for and against the legislation.
Lujan Grisham said sheriffs should have the opportunity to oppose any recommended policy change, but “they cannot not enforce.”
“”If they really intend to do that, they should resign as a law enforcement officer and leader in that community,” she said.
New Mexico Sheriffs’ Association President Tony Mace of Cibola County said the new law goes too far by potentially impounding guns before any crime is committed and that he and other sheriffs will assert their discretion over its enforcement.