Lawmakers Weigh Bomb Threat Bill In Annapolis - 47 ABC - Delmarva's Choice

Lawmakers Weigh Bomb Threat Bill In Annapolis

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MARYLAND - After a false bomb threat at the Centre at Salisbury on Friday, Maryland lawmakers are heading to Annapolis this week to discuss unfortunately timely legislation.

As it stands now, wherever the call for a false threat originates is where the caller has to be charged, but with cell phones being used more often that process has gotten more difficult.

The bill was sparked last year by erroneous threats in Worcester County.  The calls coming from the Western Shore.  This year, the need is apparently highlighted by Friday's bomb threat in Salisbury, police believe that call came from a cell phone in Delaware.

"We don't care where you made the phone call," says Republican Delegate Mike McDermott, "if we know that you made it, for instance, in the Centre at Salisbury, then Wicomico County would have jurisdiction, and we could charge you here as well."

For Delegate McDermott, this isn't just a legal issue, but an economic one as well.

Retail in and around the mall was shut down for much of the day after that 10:30 AM threat.

"It's the area where that happened that suffered the financial and economic loss...so they're the ones who really have an interest in seeing justice done," says McDermott.

The lawmaker hopes state-wide attention to last week's threat will help move the bill along, saying "you know, you have this as a backdrop, we can take that back to the committee and say 'this is what we're talking about,' and it's something that needs to be addressed."

The so-called "bomb threat bill" cleared the house and is currently being discussed in the Senate Judiciary Committee, where a vote could happen this week.

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