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Demand surges in Maryland for handguns and carry permits

Demand surges in Maryland for handguns and carry permits

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ANNAPOLIS — Demand is surging for concealed carry permits in Maryland in the wake of the U.S. Supreme Court ruling that Americans have a right to carry firearms in public for self-defense.

The Washington Post reported Friday that Maryland State Police say they’ve received 11 times the usual number of permit applications to carry a gun. The surge comes after Gov. Larry Hogan’s order to bring the state in line with the high court’s ruling on June 23.

Maryland firearms dealers have told the Post that customers have been calling and visiting their shops in search of small, easily hidden hand guns.

Alex Rozental, the owner of AM Shooting in Damascus, said he’s sold out of 9mm semiautomatic handguns that are popular for concealed carry.

“I see all sorts of customers — construction workers, business owners — through all the backgrounds,” Rozental told the newspaper. He also said that his state-mandated training courses are booked through September.

Maryland’s Republican governor directed state police on July 5 to suspend the state’s “good and substantial reason” standard for permits to carry handguns. The threshold for that standard included showing a person’s life is in danger from threats or working in a job that could put them in contact with people who are dangerous.

The U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling in June had struck down a similar law in New York, which Hogan said was “virtually indistinguishable” from the one in Maryland.

“It would be unconstitutional to continue enforcing this provision in state law,” Hogan said.

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