Will Maine’s permissive gun laws change after Lewiston shooting?


This story was originally published by The Trace, a nonprofit newsroom covering gun violence in America. Sign up for its newsletters here.

In Maine, which suffered the deadliest mass shooting in its history on October 25, guns are a fact of life. Nearly half of all households own one, mostly for hunting and recreation, sometimes for self-defense. The state’s gun access laws are permissive — there are no background checks on private sales, and residents don’t need a permit or training to carry a concealed gun in public. Its gun homicide rate is so low that it’s been hard to justify the need for tighter regulation. And with no history of public mass shootings to point to, this arrangement seemed to be working.

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