Thank you for this opportunity to submit written testimony concerning an important
priority of the Women’s Democratic Club of Montgomery County (WDC) for the 2018
legislative session. WDC is one of the largest and most active Democratic Clubs in
Montgomery County. WDC’s members include more than 600 politically active women
and men, including many elected officials.
WDC urges the passage of HB1646 This bill requires that when a defendant has been
charged with a disqualifying crime that is potentially a domestically-related crime, the
State's Attorney shall serve written notice on the defendant, the defendant’s counsel,
and the court, that under State law the defendant is prohibited from possessing or
owning a regulated firearm, rifle or shotgun. The Court shall order the defendant to
transfer all such firearms within two business days to a State or local law enforcement
official or to a federally-licensed firearms dealer, and provide proof of the transfer to the
Keeping guns out of the hands of criminals is both a public health issue and a public
safety issue. This is particularly true for victims of domestic violence. Numerous studies
have documented the connection between domestic violence-related homicides and
the presence of firearms. We can all agree that protecting our communities and our
citizens is of paramount importance. This is particularly true with regard to those who
are most vulnerable to gun violence.
It is important to note that this bill does not in any way infringe on the Second
Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens, nor does it expand the list of those prohibited
from owning firearms.
HB1646 will help make our communities safer by keeping guns out of the hands of
criminals, and will create a more secure environment for all Maryland residents.
We ask for your support for HB1646 and strongly urge a favorable Committee report.