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Pa. lawmakers look tighten protections for domestic violence victims

Written by Rachel McDevitt | Apr 3, 2017 2:49 AM
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FILE PHOTO: The grave site of Stacy Dyabelko in Lebanon. Stacy was killed in a 2001 murder-suicide involving an ex-boyfriend with whom she had taken out out a Protection From Abuse order. (AP Photo/Bradley C Bower)

(Harrisburg) -- State lawmakers are looking at package of legislation aimed at protecting victims of domestic violence. 

But one of the proposals has raised concerns with at least one senator.

The bill would require a defendant under an active protection from abuse order or PFA, to surrender any weapons to law enforcement or a registered gun dealer. 

Republican Senator Camera Bartolotta of Beaver County says while she appreciates the intent behind the bill, she's worried about fraudulent PFAs.

"I've been aware of instances when a man will file a false PFA against a woman, so as to disarm her and create a hostile and dangerous situation," she says.

Under current state law, an abuser told to surrender weapons can give them to a third party, such as a relative, for safe-keeping.

But in those cases, the abuser often still has access to the weapons.

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