The Illinois State Police has broadened its “clear and present danger” rules for FOID holders and applicants in response to the Highland Park parade mass shooting.
ISP adopted updates on Monday that were approved by the Joint Committee on Administrative Rules (JCAR), which is a bipartisan legislative oversight committee.
The update allows for broader use of clear and present danger reporting, which is a mechanism where ISP can revoke or deny a FOID card for an individual who poses a serious threat.
Prior to the clear and present danger emergency rule filing in July, a subject’s clear and present danger had to be “impending” or “imminent” for state police to take action.
The update changes the definition of “clear and present danger” to be more consistent with the statutory definition in the FOID Act, which broadly defines clear and present danger as requiring “physical or verbal behavior, such as violent, suicidal, or assaultive threats, actions, or other behavior.”
“The broader definition can better inform current or future decisions on FOID card revocations or denials based on risks to public safety,” ISP said in a statement.
The update comes in the wake of the Highland Park mass shooting.
ISP said they received a clear and present danger report regarding threats Robert Crimo III, 22, of Highwood, made to his family in September 2019.
However, Crimo did not have a Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card or a pending application for one at the time.
He was later able to apply for a FOID card when he was 19 years old in December 2019. His father sponsored the application.
When the application was reviewed in January 2020, “there was insufficient basis to establish a clear and present danger and deny the FOID application,” ISP said.
The new rule means that clear and present danger reports submitted to ISP from a certified medical professional, school administrator or law enforcement agency that does not meet the definition of “clear and present danger” under the FOID Act will be retained for five years.
The change also allows ISP to maintain and use a clear and present danger report when the individual did not have a FOID card or was not applying for one at the time the report was submitted, like in Crimo’s case.
In addition to the new updates, a model policy was recently approved for firearms restraining orders.
A firearms restraining order (FRO) allows law enforcement and family members to obtain a court order temporarily restricting an individual, who is determined to be at risk of harming themselves or others, from having access to firearms.
“It is important law enforcement agencies know how to safely and legally execute a Firearms Restraining Order,” ISP Director Brendan Kelly said.
“The model policy created by the Commission contains procedures that allow law enforcement agencies to comply with all firearms laws while respecting individuals’ constitutional and due process rights.”
The policy addresses law enforcement processes in petitioning for a FRO; serving a FRO issued by the court; securing firearms, ammunition and firearm parts surrendered by the subject of the FRO; executing a FRO search warrant; returning firearms, ammunition or firearm parts; attending court hearings; and training.
“When determining whether to issue or revoke a FOID card, it is imperative ISP has as much information and evidence as possible,” Kelly said.
“Updates to this administrative rule will strengthen ISP’s ability to keep firearms out of the hands of dangerous individuals,” Kelly added.