Over solid Republican objections, the Senate voted Monday night to remove the one-year statute of limitation on an existing law against using a handgun in a crime of violence or other felony.

Senators voted 34-12 to approve and send to the House legislation sponsored by Sen. Brian E. Frosh, a Montgomery County Democrat, that would make the statute of limitations for the offense identical to that of the underlying crime.

Frosh said the measure has the strong the strong support of the Maryland State's Attorney's Association. He said prosecutors want to be able to apply the handgun-use law, a conviction for which results in a longer total sentence, when crimes are solved after having been cold cases.