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U.S. Supreme Court declines to hear appeal over Maryland weapons ban

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge to a Maryland law restricting assault-style weapons. File Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge to a Maryland law restricting assault-style weapons. File Photo by Keizo Mori/UPI | License Photo

May 20 (UPI) -- The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge to a Maryland law restricting assault-style weapons.

The court's decision to deny the petition for judicial review sends the appeal, collectively launched by a group of individuals and organizations, back to a lower court.

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The lawsuit names Maryland Attorney General Anthony Brown, Secretary of State Police Col. Woodrow Jones III, Baltimore County Sheriff R. Jay Fisher and Anne Arundel County Sheriff Everett Sesker.

The suit now returns to the U.S. 4th Circuit Court of Appeals in Richmond, Va. The lower court already in March heard arguments in the case, but has not yet issued a decision. That decision is likely to again be appealed to the Supreme Court whenever it is released.

The Supreme Court rarely hears appeals on an issue before a lower court makes a ruling.

Maryland first passed legislation in 2017 banning more than 40 different types of assault-style weapons and limiting magazine sizes.

A U.S. District Court judge issued a temporary injunction last September, days before the law was set to come into effect.

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Other states and the District of Columbia have passed similar laws, which have been met with legal challenges.

The laws came after a gunman in 2012 killed 27 people, including 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., before killing himself.

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