Committee debates gun restrictions in Md.

ANNAPOLIS, Md (WMAR) - Maryland's Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee debated gun restrictions in Maryland Thursday evening after passing a bill to repeal the death penalty in Maryland.

With nearly 40 proposed amendments to discuss, It didn't take long after the debates began for the committee to adopt an amendment that changes the requirement for weapon purchase from an 8-hour training to an 4-hour training.  It would also lower the fee from $100.00 to $50.00.

The committee then debated an amendment that would prevent someone who has been involuntarily committed to a mental institution from buying a gun.   The amendment would also stop someone from buying gun in Maryland if they voluntarily commit themselves to a mental institution for more than 30 days.

ABC2 News confirms that some Senators were concerned the amendment would stop people from getting mental health assistance, if needed.

The committee then debated an amendment that, if one is denied a gun permit, State Police would be forced to give them an explanation.  The amendment would have also made it easier to get a concealed carry permit.  It didn't take long before the amendment failed.

Discussions soon circled back around to gun-buying by people who have been in mental institutions.  Sen. C Anthony Muse (D-Prince Georges County) called for it to be pulled for more study.

"This is the one area where if we get it wrong, people would not seek treatment and it would cost lives" said Sen.  Christopher B. Shank  (R-Washington County) .

Sen. Brian Frosh (D- Montgomery County)  looked for what the committee could agree on in relation to who should not be allowed to own guns in the state.

Sen. Frosh listed those who have been involuntarily committed, been found "not criminally responsible" or guilty by reason of insanity,  those who have been found not competent to stand trial, and those who have been convicted of crimes.

There was not a lot of support reported on the panel to ban gun ownership for people who voluntarily commit themselves to mental institutions.

Stay with and Christian Schaffer on Twitter for the latest.

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