Your Gun Possession Lawyer
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What Does a Gun Possession Attorney Do?
A qualified criminal defense attorney can defend you if you have been arrested on gun possession or other gun-related charges. Choose a defense attorney who has handled firearms possession charges previously.
Due to the complexity of gun laws, penalties for violating them can vary depending on several factors, including:
- Your location at the time of the arrest
- Whether you were under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance
- If you were in possession of illegal or stolen goods
In addition to protecting your rights, an attorney can investigate the circumstances surrounding your arrest, speak with witnesses, and negotiate with the prosecution for leniency or dismissal of the charges.
The criminal justice system can be an overwhelming and confusing system to deal with from the moment the police start investigating the crime and make the arrest all the way through to the completion of the court process. Fortunately, a competent drug possession attorney can ease your burden and help you with your case.
Is Gun Possession Legal in California?
Whether it is legal to possess a firearm in California depends on several factors, including a person’s background, age, the type of firearm in possession, and whether they violate concealed carry laws.
In California, most individuals aged 21 and older can own, possess and buy a gun. However, once someone buys a gun, certain state requirements regarding firearm storage and transportation must be followed.
For example, transporting a loaded firearm is a crime. It is also a crime to store a loaded firearm in your home if a child could access it without their parent’s permission.
The California Penal Code 16590 also prohibits possessing, selling, and manufacturing certain types of firearms, such as zip guns, undetectable firearms, and wallet guns. In addition, certain groups of people aren’t allowed to possess a firearm of any kind.
Gun Possession Lawyer Explains Potential Penalties for Gun Possession Charges
Gun possession is often limited by state laws to ensure the safety of the gun owner and those around them. Since California gun laws strictly regulate gun ownership and usage, penalties for violating them can carry severe and life-changing consequences.
All firearm purchases must go through a licensed gun dealer in what is called the Dealer’s Record of Sale (DROS) process. Firearms can be bought at gun shows and through a private party transaction.
According to state laws, a seller has to wait for ten days before releasing or transferring a gun to a buyer.
Who Can Buy a Firearm?
A licensed dealer can’t sell, supply, or give possession of a firearm to a person younger than 21. In addition, buyers are required to present clear evidence of their age to the seller.
However, if an individual younger than 21 but over the age of 18 has a valid hunting license or is an active peace or federal officer, a licensed dealer can sell them a firearm.
Unlawful Possession of a Firearm
If you’ve bought a gun without going through the proper legal channels, or you are among individuals who can not possess a firearm, you may be charged and convicted of unlawful possession of a gun.
Those who have been previously convicted of certain misdemeanor offenses, drug addicts, individuals who suffer from a mental health disorder, and persons with a felony conviction on their record are those who can’t possess a firearm.
Remember that the federal gun ownership law also applies to California residents. Federal law prohibits certain groups of people, including those who are fugitives from justice, facing domestic violence or stalking-related court order, or who are in the country illegally to possess a firearm.
Penalties for Gun Offenses
Unlawful firearm possession can result in misdemeanor charges, including up to a year in county jail and up to $1,000 in fines. However, depending on the circumstances of the case, illegal possession of a firearm may also face a felony charge that can lead to a sentence of up to 20 years in state prison.
Courts can send some gun charges to federal court. Federal gun charges can be more serious and lead to more severe fines and lengthy prison time.
Although California allows its citizens to carry concealed firearms if they have a permit, those who don’t can face misdemeanor or felony charges. These felony firearms charges can result in spending up to 3 years in prison along with a fine of up to $10,000.
How Can a Gun Possession Attorney Help?
A gun possession charge, or any criminal charge for that matter, should not be taken lightly. Because of complicated firearm laws, defending against gun possession charges is difficult but not impossible.
A skilled criminal defense lawyer familiar with firearm possession laws can, for example, try to make the prosecution’s evidence inadmissible. They can challenge the search a police officer conducted when it was discovered that you possessed a firearm.
There are other potential defense strategies a defense attorney can use. However, reaching out to a criminal defense lawyer as soon as possible can benefit your case if you are charged with a gun offense.
Gun Possession Charges Defense
Whether you are facing gun charges or weapons charges, the Law Office of Rebecca Feigelson can walk you through the criminal process and keep you informed of your options.
We will review your case and try to get the charges against you dismissed or negotiate a plea deal with the prosecution. Reach out to our office to schedule a free consultation so we can discuss your case and provide appropriate legal advice.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Jail Time Can You Get for Gun Charges in California?
It depends on the gun crime you are charged with. Although certain crimes regarding firearm possession are misdemeanors that carry up to a year of jail time, others can be charged as felonies.
That means that you may even spend several years in state prison. In cases where the criminal law doesn’t state specific penalties for the crime, the minimum sentence might still be as high as 16 months of prison time.
What Disqualifies You From Owning a Gun in California?
California Penal Code29800 prohibits anyone convicted of specific misdemeanors, convicted felons, and narcotic drug addicts from owning or acquiring guns. Serious penalties are put in place for violating this law. BB guns may also be considered firearms under certain circumstances if the projectile is large enough.