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One Montgomery County delegate fears a mass shooting will occur in Maryland if a simple fix isn't made to computer systems in the state.
Currently, Maryland has a gun registry that lists who owns firearms. There is also the criminal database which contains information on who is disqualified from owning a gun because of a criminal convictions.
But those two systems cannot interact with each other, and a state police study shows because of that as many as 110,000 Maryland residents may have a gun they're not allowed to have. Montgomery County Del. Luiz Simmons has a bill that would fix the systems, saying it would cost just $300,000.
"That may sound like a lot of money to somebody. But we have a multi-billion dollar budget. And we're talking about 110,000 people or thereabout who have weapons of mass destruction. And they're not supposed to have them," he says.
Simmons says Gov. Martin O'Malley's administration was ready to support the plan but is backing out now, a move he calls short-sighted. Simmons fears a mass shooting will happen in Maryland if the state police's figures are true.
"I don't mean to be histrionic...but I have to say it's going to happen. It's going to happen. And then we're gonna act. It's just wrong," he says.
Simmons' bill was one of many dealing with guns that were taken up in committee yesterday in Annapolis. Few are expected to pass, as in an election year lawmakers tend to shy away from controversial subjects.