ghost guns

Maryland Governor to Allow Ghost Gun Ban to Become Law Without Signing It

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A ban on so-called ghost guns will go into effect in Maryland without the governor's signature.

Ghost guns are assembled from parts sold in kits. They don’t have serial numbers, so they’re not traceable

A student at Magruder High School in Montgomery County shot another student with a ghost gun in January just as the General Assembly session got underway in Annapolis. It elevated the issue and, advocates say, helped convince lawmakers to enact a ban on ghost guns this year.

“We hear about school shootings happening almost every day in America, you just don’t ever think it’s going to be so close to home,” said Melissa Ladd, who leads Moms Demand Action in Maryland.

A substitute teacher who lives near Magruder, she was among the advocates at a rally just after the shooting happened.

“That shooting really especially hit home for me,” she said. “I work in an elementary school that feeds into Magruder, so those are my former students, those are my friends’ kids who were all on lockdown for five hours.”

Just this week, Montgomery County police arrested a 16-year-old Clarksburg High School student who allegedly had a loaded ghost gun in his car. Detectives also recovered three kits used for making ghost guns at his home, police said.

Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan said he’ll let the ban become law without signing it.

"It is a positive step as we seek to stem the tide of violent crime but it does nothing to penalize those who actually pull the trigger on firearms," he said in a statement.

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