- The Washington Times - Friday, January 15, 2016

Maryland, Virginia and District of Columbia law enforcement will begin to share information on illegal guns and shootings, the top lawyers for each jurisdiction said Friday, calling the regional effort “historic.”

Maryland Attorney General Brian E. Frosh, Virginia Attorney General Mark Herring and D.C. Attorney General Karl A. Racine, all Democrats who favor gun control, announced an agreement to pool information after a first-of-its-kind meeting in Washington.

Virginia has the most relaxed gun laws of the three, and the legal chiefs said most of the guns used by criminals in the other two jurisdictions come from Virginia. Mr. Herring said he feels it’s his duty to police gun sales more strictly in his state.

“I have made no secret that I support additional common sense measures to reduce gun violence. A good starting place would be universal background checks. We also know there’s also a strong correlation between gun violence and domestic violence so I think there’s some opportunities for legislation there,” Mr. Herring said. “But I want to be clear, until we get those laws passed, I’m committed like the governor is to enforcing the laws we have very strictly.”

The goal of the three attorneys general is to keep all of prosecuting offices in Maryland, Virginia and the District up to date on gun crimes in the other jurisdictions. They’ll share information on the sources of guns used in crimes, Mr. Frosh said.

“It’s a historic meeting and we hope it leads to historic results,” Mr. Frosh said. “It’s hard to say today that the investigation in Maryland that we’re doing in gun trafficking is going to lead to arrests and convictions in Virginia but it can only help if they know what’s going on in our state, if they know who we’re pursuing, why we’re pursuing them.”

Mr. Racine said the regional effort was groundbreaking because gun enforcement across state lines has usually been left to federal authorities, and states haven’t fully tested interstate collaboration.

The three lawyers also talked in their meeting about heroin trafficking, which has become a major problem on the eastern seaboard.

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