Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh today joined a coalition of 20 other attorneys general in sending a letter to Congressional leaders urging support of legislation extending existing background check requirements on firearm sales to also include ammunition sales. The attorneys general argue these background checks would decrease gun violence by stopping individuals who are prohibited from purchasing a gun from also obtaining ammunition.
“People looking to buy ammunition should be subject to the same requirements that are already in place for firearm sales,” said Attorney General Frosh. “This common sense legislation will close a gaping loophole and add another crucial piece to the strategy of reducing gun violence in our communities.”
Jaime’s Law is named after 14-year-old Jaime Guttenberg, one of 17 students and teachers killed in a mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. The bill would make it illegal for individuals who are already “prohibited purchasers” under federal law – including convicted felons, domestic abusers, and individuals with serious mental health conditions – to purchase or possess ammunition.
To enforce this requirement, individuals would either have to be licensed to own a firearm or undergo a background check to purchase ammunition. Federal law already places these requirements on firearms sales; extending those same requirements to ammunition can reduce gun violence and suicide.
Jaime’s Law is currently before the House Judiciary Committee. In their letter, the attorneys general ask the Committee to give the bill their support and urge the House and the Senate to ensure this important bill is passed to support law enforcement and public safety.
In addition to Maryland, the letter was signed by the attorneys general of California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, the District of Columbia, Hawaii, Illinois, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington.