Prince George’s County officials joined Gov. Martin O’Malley in Annapolis Feb. 6 to lobby for tougher gun laws, even as police identified the latest person to fall prey to gun violence in the county.
As lawmakers gathered at the state capital to push for stronger gun control, opponents converged on Lawyer’s Mall to protest O’Malley’s Firearm Safety Act of 2013, which would ban assault-type weapons, toughen licensing requirements for guns and increase spending for school safety.
Maryland State’s Attorney Angela Alsobrooks was scheduled to testify in support of O’Malley’s plan before the Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee. She was also scheduled to lend her support to Senate Bill 228, which would eliminate the one-year statute of limitations for prosecuting individuals charged with use of a handgun in the commission of a crime of violence, according to a statement released by her office. Alsobrooks’ office allegedly had to drop the charge eight times in recent months because the limit had expired.
Meanwhile, Prince George’s police identified a man found fatally shot Feb. 4 in Oxon Run Park in Hillcrest Heights. According to a statement, he is Salaam Adams, 20, of the 1800 block of Guess Road in Durham, N.C. It could not be determined why he was in Prince George’s and police have released no information on potential suspects or a motive in the attack.
According to police, Maryland-National Capital Park Police were called to the 2600 block of Oxon Run Drive just before 7:30 a.m. by a caller reporting seeing a man down. Officers arrived to find Adams suffering from one gunshot wound. He was pronounced dead on the scene. He is the eighth person to be killed in Prince George’s this year.
According to police department data, 64 people were slain in Prince George’s County in 2012, the majority of them with gun. That compared to 93 in 2011. The county recorded 169 homicides in 2005, records show. Most of the county’s homicides are gun crimes.
Police recently announced the results of a special operation in January where police deployed an additional 100 officers or more to county streets in an effort to reduce violence crime and to work to get guns off the street. According to a statement, the operation included officers from the Narcotic Enforcement Division, the Special Operations Division, the gang unit, fugitive squad, robber suppression teams and special assignment teams. The agency was assisted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, which “dedicated federal resources,” the statement said.
The month-long initiative resulted in 380 arrests, police said. Thirty-nine weapons and 10 replicas were seized. The department plans to repeat the operation later this year, the statement said.
Prince George’s County Police Chief Mark Magaw was among the local officials to support O’Malley in Annapolis.