Maryland has some of the strictest gun laws in the nation and does not recognize handgun permits issued by other states. Recently, stories of out-of-state gun owners who say they have been unjustly targeted by the Maryland Transportation Authority (MDTA) for minor traffic violations because they have concealed weapons permits are mounting, The Washington Times reports.
The Times recounts the example of Florida-resident John Filippidis, who was stopped last year on Christmas Eve while driving south on Interstate 95 through Maryland. His children and wife were separated in the back seats of different police cruisers while the officers searched Filippidis' vehicle for his handgun, which was left locked-up in Florida.
Filippidis got off with only a speeding warning. MDTA apologized for the incident, but investigations found that the stop was lawful and within protocol. Filippidis' story did prompt other out-of-state gun owners who have had similar experiences to question whether they've been targeted.
The Times reports that Paul Kramer, a Baltimore-based criminal defense lawyer and former deputy U.S. attorney for Maryland, "says these type of stops and searches happen far too often in Maryland and are a waste of taxpayer money."