Gun Violence Bills Signed into Law

Sponsored content – Gov. Hogan signed a host of bills into law in April that change the way guns and ammunition are governed in the state. The package of bills is one of the most comprehensive to be signed into law of any state in the country.

Part of the legislation includes a ban in the state on bump stocks and any other device that permits semi-automatic fire. Another bill in the package increases the ability of law enforcement officers to confiscate guns from people who have been labeled as an extreme risk. This is now known as the “red flag” law.

States across the country have expressed support for this type of legislation but Maryland becomes one of the first states in the country to act on it following the shootings in Las Vegas and in Parkland, Florida. 

The red-flag laws are more commonly known as gun violence restraining orders. Family members and law enforcement officials can petition the court to have a person’s firearms taken from them if they are deemed to be too dangerous. The restraining order takes the guns away from the subject for a period that is determined by the court.

“Gun laws are becoming stricter in the state of Maryland,” Oleg Fastovsky, a Maryland criminal defense and gun crimes attorney, said. “Make sure you know the current laws, especially if you are a gun owner, so you can avoid any legal complications.”

Also signed into law by Gov. Hogan was a bill that provides $5 million to gun-violence prevention programs and public health programs. There were other measures signed by the governor that will strengthen the existing laws preventing people convicted of domestic violence from possessing or purchasing guns.

Even though advocacy groups are praising the new laws, they are still concerned about everyday gun violence, not just mass shootings. Advocacy groups are also concerned about gun suicides, of which there are 22,000 across the country each year.

A recent study found that there are close to 1,670 shootings per year in Maryland. Many of these shootings are non-fatal but they also cost more than $1.3 billion. Advocates for gun safety are pleased with the laws signed by the governor because they target the underlying issues.

About the sponsor: Attorney Oleg Fastovsky is a seasoned criminal defense lawyer who is licensed in the state of Maryland. Attorney Fastovsky has used his experience to craft winning defensive strategies for his clients. This sponsored content is provided by Oleg Fastovsky Attorney at Law, with a focus on local and national issues.

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