DuPage sheriff's police 'vigorously pursuing' revoked FOID cards

  • James Mendrick

    James Mendrick

 
 

DuPage County Sheriff James Mendrick says his department is stepping up its effort to confiscate revoked firearm owner's identification cards after this month's mass shooting in Aurora.

Five employees were killed and six police officers were injured during the Feb. 15 shooting at the Henry Pratt Co. warehouse in Aurora. The gunman, who started firing a handgun after being terminated from his job, eventually was killed in a shootout with police.

The gunman had his state-issued FOID card revoked in April 2017 -- and never should have received it in the first place. But no record of the man complying with the revocation or submitting a required "Firearm Disposition Record" could be found, officials said.

The situation prompted the sheriff's office in DuPage to enhance its system to ensure that revoked FOID cards are collected in the unincorporated areas it serves.

"In DuPage County, we are vigorously pursuing all of these FOID revocations," Mendrick said Tuesday. "We're not letting them languish."

When a FOID card is revoked, state police notify the cardholder and local police about the revocation, according to Mendrick. The person then is given 48 hours to surrender the FOID card, officials said. Refusing to do so is a misdemeanor.

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Mendrick said his department usually handles roughly 80 FOID revocations a year.

In the past, a revocation would be assigned to a detective for "eventual" follow-up. "There was no time limit put on when we're going to do x, y and z," he said.

Starting last week, that approach changed.

Now when the department learns about a FOID card being revoked, a social worker immediately will contact the cardholder and ask him or her to turn in the FOID card.

For those who don't respond, deputies will be sent to their homes after the 48-hour period has elapsed.

"Now we're going to do it formally, in person," Mendrick said. "And we're going to do everything in our power to get that card."

The individuals also will be asked to voluntarily surrender their guns to the deputies.

"I want to be in the position where I could say, no matter what happens, we did everything that we possibly could to intervene," Mendrick said, "to get that card, to get those guns and to keep the county safe."

Mendrick also talked about implementing new programs to help prevent workforce violence, including special training for businesses and giving companies the option of having deputies present when an employee is being terminated.

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