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Gun Crimes

With random and catastrophic episodes of gun violence appearing on the news with increasing frequency, New York State law has a zero tolerance approach to the illegal possession of firearms. Even the charges that are not felonies can send you to jail and give you a criminal record that limits your opportunities in life.

Criminal Possession of a Firearm

NYPL 265.01-b, which was passed in the wake of the Sandy Hook Connecticut Elementary school tragedy and other mass shootings, resulted in the creation of a new gun offense, Criminal Possession of a Firearm. At one time, if you possessed an unloaded firearm, then you could only be charged with Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree which is a Class A misdemeanor. Now prosecutors have the discretion to charge you with Criminal Possession of a Firearm instead, which is a Class E non-violent felony. If convicted, then you could spend up to four years in prison.

Criminal Possession of a Weapon on School Grounds

This is another law that was passed after several school shootings. It is an automatic felony charge if you knowingly possess a firearm in any place used for education purposes, such as a school, college, or university. A Class E felony, it can send you to prison for up to four years.

Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree

If you possess any firearm without the proper license, then you may be charged with Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree, a Class A misdemeanor. This base weapons possession offense can result in you spending up to one year in jail and/or paying a substantial fine.

Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Third Degree

There are a number of gun-related circumstances that could result in this charge being applied against you. They include:

  •  You were previously convicted of another weapons possession charge
  • You were caught with a firearm on you and have been convicted of a Class A misdemeanor or felony in the last five years
  • You possessed an unloaded firearm while committing a violent felony offense
  • You were arrested with three or more firearms in your possession

If convicted of this Class D felony, then you could spend up to seven years in prison.

Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree

This charge, which is a Class C felony, generally applies in one of three circumstances:

  • You are carrying a loaded firearm, disguised gun, or machine gun with intention of using it on another person
  • You possess five or more firearms
  • You possess a loaded firearm outside your home or place of business

A conviction could send you to a state prison for up to 15 years.

Criminal Possession of a Dangerous Weapon in the First Degree

This is one of the most serious weapons offenses you can be charged with, as it is a Class B felony that can result in a 25-year prison sentence. If you illegally possess 10 or more guns or an explosive device that you intend to use, then a prosecutor will swiftly apply a charge of Criminal Possession of a Dangerous Weapon in the First Degree.

If you are arrested for a gun crime in New York, then contact an experienced criminal defense attorney immediately. Without legal advice and assistance, you could face years of prison time and substantial fines, so protect yourself and your future from the very beginning. Call The Law Offices of Julie Rendelman, LLC at 212-951-1232 for a free consultation if you are dealing with criminal charges related to gun crimes.

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