Connecticut, Maryland toughen gun laws -- could it happen here?

April 5, 2013 4:25:33 AM PDT
Family of victims in the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting stood by their Connecticut governor this week as he signed into law tough new restrictions on weapons. The legislation is being called one of the toughest in the nation - and a potential model for other states.

However, not everyone thinks lives will be saved because of it. Some in North Carolina say tougher gun laws are not the answer to tragedies like Sandy Hook - that left 20 elementary school children and six educators dead when Adam Lanza walked into a school with an AR-15 rifle and started shooting.

"Any measures they do like that will not stop Sandy Hook or any other tragedy," said local gun owner Michael Daughtry.

Daughtry is a gun collector. He told ABC11 that gun laws won't stop determined criminals from getting their hands on weapons.

"A gun law is a gun law, and a criminal doesn't follow the law," said Daughtry. "They don't follow background checks. They steal their weapons."

Connecticut now follows Colorado and New York as states that passed tougher laws since Sandy Hook. Among many things, the legislation adds more than 100 firearms to the state's assault weapons ban. It also creates the nation's first dangerous weapon offender registry, and bans the purchase of ammunition magazines holding more than ten rounds.

In North Carolina, however, smartgunlaws.org says there is no law regulating large capacity magazines.

Some say that's just fine, and hope our state won't be next to pass tougher laws. While others agree that restrictions are necessary, and say certain guns are better left out of the general public.

Maryland will now follow suit. It is set to surpass Connecticut with the strictest gun laws in the nation. The Maryland bill addresses firearm access to the mentally ill, which is something some say was not addressed enough in Connecticut's bill.

The bill is now in the Maryland governor's hands.

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