ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — A bill banning ghost guns in Maryland is heading to Gov. Larry Hogan’s desk for his signature after it was passed in the House Tuesday.

Ghost guns are unregistered guns that are easily ordered on the internet, easily assembled at home and impossible to trace.

READ MORE: Fear And Frustration: 18 People Shot In Baltimore Last Weekend, Including Two Fells Point Shootings

The bill prohibits people from purchasing, receiving, selling, offering to sell or transferring a ghost gun or ghost gun part on or after March 1, 2023. It passed on a vote of 92 to 41.

Maryland Attorney General Brian Frosh said the legislation will save lives.

“These untraceable firearms have become the weapon of choice for criminals,” Frosh said. “They are easily purchased over the internet without a background check, making them easily accessible to children, violent felons, domestic abusers, and others who are ineligible to own a firearm. This bill closes a loophole that makes it difficult for law enforcement to do its job and creates a terrible public safety threat.”

READ MORE: Maryland Gas Tax Set To Increase, Some Legislators Call For Another Tax Holiday

In Baltimore, police said they’re seizing more and more of them and that they’re being used to commit violent crime.

“In 2018, we only seized 12 ghost guns,” Baltimore Police Commissioner Michael Harrison said in February. “In 2021, we seized 345. That’s a 2,775 percent increase.”

In January, a student at a Rockville high school was shot by another student with a ghost gun. Last month, a Baltimore high school student was arrested after a ghost gun was found in their backpack.

MORE NEWS: Persons Of Interest Sought In Fells Point Shooting, Police Say

 

CBS Baltimore Staff