Gun and Weapon Charges: What You Need to Know
In New Jersey, crimes involving guns and other weapons happen all too often. Over the years, laws have changed regularly, especially with the increase in gun violence resulting from mass shootings and other gun-related crimes in the state and around the United States. There are even instances of those being wrongfully convicted of using guns and other weapons too.
Gun and weapon charges are all very serious charges, such as the unlawful possession of a firearm, carrying an unlicensed weapon, juvenile weapon charges, carrying a gun without a permit, and possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose. If you are convicted of one of these crimes, you will probably be looking at some amount of jail time without the chance of parole.
Aside from the hefty amount of penalties, including expensive fines and court costs, the mandatory incarceration stemming from gun and weapon charges in New Jersey can lead to hardships involving future employment and your personal life.
Gun and Weapon Charges in New Jersey
Gun and weapon charges in the Garden State can be sorted into four different categories, including:
- Illegal weapons: The charge of possessing an illegal weapon is typically a third-degree or fourth-degree crime with a punishment of five years in prison. If the illegal weapon is a handgun, the crime is of the second-degree and can result in ten years of jail time with five years of parole ineligibility.
- Possessing a weapon for an unlawful purpose: This charge is of the broader variety and it usually involves a person having a gun or weapon and plans on it using against another person or their property. Possessing a non-firearm weapon unlawfully is a third-degree crime and possessing a firearm unlawfully is a second-degree crime which can result in ten years of jail time. Oddly enough, a person doesn’t have to use the weapon to be charged.
- Possessing a weapon illegally: This type of charge involves having a firearm or weapon that you aren’t permitted to have. The penalties associated with this charge is a maximum of ten years of jail time. Someone with a prior felony conviction or on parole/probation is typically not permitted to own a firearm.
- Possessing a weapon that is specifically and explicitly prohibited: This charge occurs when a person has a weapon, legally or illegally, in a place where they aren’t permitted to, like an airport or school. It is also possible that these charges arise if someone is in possession of a firearm or weapon while committing another crime.
What If You Are Charged?
Depending on the incident itself, there could be options working towards the dismissal of your case. This might involve convincing the court to suppress the evidence based on constitutional issues or challenging the prosecution to prove what happened beyond a reasonable doubt.
Either way, the Law Offices of Anthony Carbone is here to help you. We will make sure you understand your rights when it comes to gun and weapon laws in New Jersey. Our goal is to make sure you aren’t charged with a crime that you didn’t commit and keep you out of jail. Contact us today for a free consultation.