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Roseau judge gets guns off the streets

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ROSEAU, MN (WDAZ)--A local judge is successfully getting guns off the streets, and she has a message for the rest of the country.

WDAZ's Kenneth Chase tells us why some say courts are failing to make sure guns don't end up in the wrong hands.

It's here at the Roseau County Courthouse victims of domestic abuse can get help.

Courts can issue a protection order requiring an abuser to turn over their guns to police or transfer them to a family member for up to two years while they go through rehabilitation.

"The reasons for this is obviously to keep the accountable person...accountable as to where those firearms are,” said Roseau County Attorney, Karen Foss.

With more than 50 domestic abuse cases reported last year in Roseau county -- the county attorney says taking guns out of an abusers hands is necessary to protect victims.

Not only's a law--but Foss says, it's rarely followed.

"This is required per Minnesota statute but Judge Dixon is you know probably one of the few judges that is following through,” said Foss.

Meaning abusers could keep their guns, or... they could end up virtually anywhere.

In Roseau County --it's a different story.

"Roseau County has kind of flown up the map as to the percentages in retrospect to the rest of the state,” said Foss.

County leaders know where an offender's guns have gone 80 percent of the time. they're either transferred to police or to a family member.

"I think Roseau County's somewhere like in the 80 percentile. Where the rest of the state is probably 5 percent or less,” said Foss.

Foss says other judges aren't doing their jobs -- and making sure the proper paperwork is filed.

"Obviously it's something that's fallen through the cracks. Within the court system,” said Roseau.

A call for change to keep guns from falling into the wrong hands.