Record gun sales soar even higher in Maryland

by Erin Cox, The Baltimore Sun  |  published on October 7, 2013

Record Gun Sales
Maryland gun dealers have sold more firearms in the first nine months of this year than in all of 2011 and 2012 combined, the state police said Wednesday.

Buyers have applied to purchase 117,009 guns this year as lawmakers debated and enacted some of the toughest new gun laws in the country. More than 15,000 gun purchase applications were sent to the state police in the 10 days before Maryland’s ban on assault rifle sales and a new handgun licensing requirement took effect Tuesday.

“Maryland is armed to the teeth,” said Del. Luiz Simmons, a Montgomery County Democrat who voted for the law but argued that the assault rifle ban was not strong enough. “We caused this rush, this stampede really, to purchase guns.”

State police could not say how many of the firearms purchased this year were handguns or assault rifles, but they have a backlog of more than 60,000 background checks to make sure the buyers are allowed to own those guns.

Even though the sale of assault rifles is now illegal in Maryland, anyone who legally owns one can keep it, any qualified buyer who ordered one before Tuesday can pick it up, and assault rifle owners can leave their guns to family members in their wills.

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