ANNAPOLIS, Md. - Opponents of a new gun-control measure in Maryland have filed a lawsuit to block the legislation from taking effect.
The lawsuit was filed in U.S. District Court in Maryland on Thursday and seeks to stop the law from taking effect on Oct. 1. Maryland Gov. Martin O'Malley signed the new law in May. It gives the state some of the nation's tightest gun laws.
Part of the law requires people to submit fingerprints to the state police to get a license to buy a handgun. In addition, the law adds 45 guns to a list of banned assault weapons and limits handgun magazines to 10 rounds.
The laws have led to a huge surge in gun purchases in the state as gun buyers are trying to purchase soon-to-be banned weapons along with additional guns to avoid the new regulations prior to the laws going into effect.
Maryland State Police have utilized additional state agencies to assist with inputting applicant information into their system while getting help from additional law enforcement agencies to assist with the background checks.
State police have said that anyone who purchases a gun prior to Oct. 1 but does not take possession of the weapon until after that date will not have to follow the new regulations. This differs from a letter written by the Maryland Attorney General's office offering its interpretation of the law.
O'Malley, a Democrat, proposed the bill in response to the December shooting in Newtown, Conn., where a gunman killed 20 children and six adults.
*Ron Snyder contributed to this article.
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