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Weapons & Gun Charges

Darren D. Shull, P.A. > Weapons & Gun Charges

What To Expect

 

Palm Beach County is cracking down on firearms possession. If you have been accused of a weapons crime, the government will likely come at you with one of their best and most experienced prosecutors. The stakes have been raised, so don’t leave the most important decision of your life to chance. Make sure you are represented by a skilled lawyer who understands how to protect your rights.

Some weapons charges we defend clients against include:

  • Illegal gun possession
  • Felon in possession of a firearm
  • Carrying a concealed weapon
  • Drive-by shootings
  • Improper exhibition of a weapon
  • Trafficking in weapons

About The Laws

 

Guns & weapons possession charges in Florida are determined by the statutes regarding “carrying a concealed weapon or firearm” (Florida Statutes 790.01). Currently Florida laws regarding the carrying of weapons or firearms, generally rifles, pistols or a shotgun, are geared to gun owners rights, supporting the ownership and possession of weapons or firearms. Florida citizens however must be careful not to run afoul of the law as penalties for illegal possession of a weapon, knife, nun-chucks, throwing star, etc. can carry up to a 1 year sentence in jail or for a firearm up to 5 years in state prison or probation or a combination of both. The most important thing to remember is that it is illegal to openly carry or carry a concealed weapon unless covered by the following exceptions under Florida Statutes 790.25:

 

 

  • The person owns or carries the firearm within their home or their place of business.
  • The person is a currently enrolled member of a skeet, target, or trapshooting club, ispart icipating in fishing, hunting, camping, target shooting or target practice, and is at or on the way to or from the aforementioned activities.
  • The person is carrying an unloaded pistol in a secure container while transporting it from the place of purchase to their residence or a place of repair.
  • The person traveling by private conveyance if the weapon is securely encased, or in a public conveyance if the weapon is securely encased and not in the person’s manual possession.
  • The person is military, law enforcement personnel and private guards while so employed.
  • The person is in the business of firearm manufacturing, repair, or distribution.

 

According to Florida State Statute 790.01, a person who carries a concealed weapon, and does not fall under any of the aforementioned exceptions, commits a first degree misdemeanor. One must remember that the term “concealed weapon” does not refer solely to firearms. A concealed weapon is defined as “any dirk, metallic knuckles, slungshot, billie, tear gas gun, chemical weapon or device, or other deadly weapon carried on or about a person in such a manner as to conceal the weapon from the ordinary sight of another person” (790.001).

In addition, a person who carries a concealed firearm commits a third degree felony. Note, a firearm has its own definition as well. A firearm is “any weapon (including a starter gun) which will, is designed to, or may readily be converted to expel a projectile by the action of an explosive; the frame or receiver of any such weapon; any firearm muffler or firearm silencer; any destructive device; or any machine gun” Florida Statute 790.001. However, an antique gun is not considered a firearm unless it aided in the commitment of a crime.

 

 

Convicted felons are prohibited from legally possessing a firearm. Sentencing for felons in much stricter when it comes to weapons possession in Florida. However, convicted felons may possess antique firearms manufactures before the year 1918, or exact replicas of antique firearms. Therefore, there are ways for a convicted felon to possess a firearm, as long as they are not used in the commission of a crime.

Defenses:

 

Darren D. Shull, your Jupiter criminal defense attorney, will consider the following defenses for your weapons possession charges (and others).

 

 

  1. Constructive Possession: It could be shown to the courts that the weapon was not directly under the control of the defendant. If a weapon was found by law enforcement to be nearby the suspect, but not explicitly on their person, constructive possession could be an effective defense.
  2. Search and Seizure: Darren Shull and his experienced investigators will question and investigate whether the method by which your person, auto or home was searched. If the method the Police used was unconstitutional, the evidence can be suppressed and the case dismissed or dropped. Law enforcement is required to give every citizen a “legitimate expectation of privacy”. Search warrants are often required by law, unless special circumstances apply.
  3. Because Florida allows qualified persons to have a permit to carry a concealed weapon or firearm, the courts are clear that an officer cannot merely stop a person only because they believe a person is carrying. Charges stemming from a stop based solely on the Officers belief that a person is carrying can defeated by a motion to supress.

 

Weapons possession charges in Palm Beach County can be an intimidating and serious charge. Use every avenue available to defend your rights and prove your innocence. Call concealed weapons and firearms possession lawyer Darren D. Shull at 561-972-6444 to begin your defense today!

 

 

Understanding Firearms Charges – 10-20-LIFE

 

We are extremely familiar with the local criminal justice system and will inform about what to expect while undergoing the legal process. Conviction of firearms offense leads to harsh mandatory prison sentences:

 

 

  • Minimum 10 Year Prison Sentence for committing a crime while in possession in a firearm
  • Minimum 20 Year Prison Sentence for illegally firing a weapon
  • Minimum 25 Years to LIFE for injuring or killing someone with a firearm
  • Minimum 3 Year Prison Sentence for possession of a firearm by a felon

 

Our skilled attorneys will explore all possible options (including plea agreements) in order to minimize the consequences you face.

 

 

Contact us to schedule a free initial consultation and discuss building a strong defense against your firearms charges. We make in-jail, evening and Saturday appointments upon request.

Spanish and French language services are available.