Because of federal and state mandates, there are always laws about bringing firearms across state borders, even if it is only for a short amount of time. This is particularly important to keep in mind if you live outside of Maryland, as there are strict laws regarding possession of firearms if you are a visitor to the state. To help you avoid these consequences or to help you if you are charged with violating Maryland gun law, the Law Office of C. Gregory Coburn presents some of the basics of gun laws in Ocean City, Maryland, and other areas of Worcester County.
1.Your gun license does not cross state borders.
If you have a license to carry a firearm in your state of residence, it is crucial to note that your license does not cross state borders. Whether you conceal carry or not, gun licenses for out-of-state visitors do not apply in Maryland. Police officers in Worcester County in particular have very strict orders to prevent out-of-state guns from crossing into the area. If you are visiting from local states and are caught with a firearm, you may be shocked at the consequences that you may face.
Police in Maryland do not pull people over specifically for carrying guns unless they are, of course, widely visible to the public or the police. Most of the time, police pulling people over for minor traffic violations discover evidence of a firearm by admission or plain view. If you are charged with gun possession from out-of-state, you will need to contact us for assistance. We can move you through the process quickly and help reduce the penalties of these charges.
It is vital to note that the wear and carry permits that are discussed below do not apply to long rifles. It is also important to know that you are not required to inform police officers that you have a gun safely secured in your vehicle if pulled over on the highway. If they find guns in your vehicle, however, you will have broken several Maryland laws.
2.If you are convicted, the consequences are severe.
Although the federal government has tried to make gun laws more flexible for legally carrying a firearm and crossing state borders, no changes have managed to find their way into Maryland law. According to the criminal code of Maryland (Title 4, Subtitle 2 of the Annotated Criminal Code of Maryland, primarily 4-203), some cases receive either misdemeanors or even felonies. Additionally, some handgun laws require mandatory jail time or, if not convicted, you may receive a PBJ (probation before judgment). A conviction in Maryland can cause you to lose your license in your home state.
3.Before you travel, apply for a Maryland Wear and Carry Permit
As of October 1st, 2019, visitors to Maryland can apply for a wear and carry permit online before they travel. In these cases, certain rules must be followed exactly. These include:
- Your gun must be unloaded, inside a carrying case, a holster with a locking flap, and ammunition should be kept separately. Preferably, your handgun should be stored inside your trunk where no one will have immediate access to it.
- There are specific locations where firearms may be used or shown. These include repair shops, sporting events, firing ranges, and concealed carry in locations like residences and places of business legally owned by the carrier. Between these locations, be sure to have your wear and carry permit on your person.
- The moving of collectors’ handguns for exhibitions and presentations are permissible if they follow the above rules.
For out of state visitors, carrying a handgun is not permissible in the following areas:
- On school properties
- Within 1,000 feet of a public demonstration
- In legislative buildings
- In or around state-owned public areas and buildings
- In state forests and parks
- In highway rest areas, unless they are kept securely, as stated above
Choose C. Gregory Coburn as Your Gun Offense Lawyer
Should you find yourself in trouble for carrying firearms into Maryland from out of state without the proper paperwork and procedures, choose C. Gregory Coburn to represent and defend you. When it comes to Maryland’s tough gun transportation laws, our defense attorney has years of experience fighting for our clients in such cases.
We are ready to help you today. Contact us for a free consultation with our Ocean City defense lawyer.