Rockland County Gun Lawyer
New York’s laws concerning gun control are some of the most restrictive in the country. In fact, New York Penal Law allows law enforcement to assume that if a person is in possession of a firearm, they are breaking the law. It is the burden of the gun owner to register their gun and demonstrate that this was done properly when necessary. In addition, any other criminal accusation that involves the use of a gun can be made much more serious than it would have been if that gun was not present.
A Rockland County gun lawyer with knowledge of New York’s gun laws could aggressively defend your rights to keep and bear arms. If you are accused of illegal possession of a firearm or are facing allegations that a gun was used during the commission of a crime, a distinguished criminal defense attorney may be able to help.
What Are Common Examples of Gun Crimes?
There are many different statutes that regulate the ownership, possession, or use of firearms. However, the criminal charges related to gun possession fall into a few general categories. Many criminal charges relate to the weapon themselves. Certain weapons like assault rifles or switchblade knives are inherently illegal to possess or own.
Other criminal charges involve the possession of weapons by specific individuals, such as convicted felons or those convicted of a domestic violence offense. Additionally, there are consequences for individuals who carry concealed firearms without proper documentation in their possession.
Other gun crimes are specifically related to how the firearm is used. For example, someone carrying a firearm in a school zone could bring much steeper consequences than simply possessing it in their home. An experienced lawyer in Rockland County could help someone prepare for the legal process depending on the specific gun charges they are facing.
How Does New York Control the Possession of Firearms?
Unlike most states, New York presumes until proven otherwise that possession of a firearm is illegal. Under New York Penal Law §265.01-b, any person who illegally possesses a firearm is guilty of a Class E felony, which is punishable by a jail sentence of up to four years. However, the statute also allows people to legally possess certain firearms if they are properly registered with the State.
According to New York Penal Law §400.00 (16-a), all firearms in Rockland County must be registered with the New York State Police. The police are required to create a database of all firearms legally held in the state. This database must contain information about the owner, including:
- Date of Birth
- Social Security Number
- A general description of the weapon: type, caliber, color, etc.
The registration process is fairly straightforward, but it does require background checks to be made upon application. Anyone in need of assistance with this process, or who is accused of illegal gun possession, should seek knowledgeable and professional help from a Rockland County gun lawyer. Whether the gun was never theirs, to begin with, or the gun was legally registered, a qualified attorney could work to defend an individual’s rights in court.
Use of a Deadly Weapon During the Commission of a Crime
Any activity that would otherwise be a crime is made much more severe with the presence of a gun, whether the gun is legally owned or not. For example, New York Penal Law §120.05 states that any assault that includes the use of a gun is automatically a felony-level charge.
Even if the firearm is never discharged during the incident, its presence is still an important factor. The inherent fear that results from the brandishing of these weapons creates additional danger in the situation, and these actions are treated accordingly under New York Penal Law.
Retrieving a Firearm from Police After a Gun Offense Arrest
Whether or not a person can recover their firearm after the police seize it will depend on a few factors. First and foremost, the police never return weapons that are inherently illegal, like an assault rifle. There is no avenue for a person to recover this type of contraband.
However, it could be possible to recover lawfully-owned weapons. This is especially true in cases where the underlying gun charge was ultimately dismissed. The most important factor in these cases is whether or not the weapon is still considered evidence or not. Only when the case has been completed will the weapon no longer be considered evidence.
How a Rockland County Gun Attorney Can Help
The right to bear arms is enshrined in the United States Constitution, but this does not prohibit the state of New York from severely limiting this right by requiring that all gun owners register their firearms with the State. Any person caught in Rockland County possessing an unregistered firearm can be charged with a crime.
In other scenarios, a person may be charged with using a weapon during the commission of another crime. This makes the underlying crime much more serious with the potential for enhanced penalties.
If you are charged with illegal possession of a firearm or facing felony charges related to the use of a gun, contact a qualified Rockland County gun lawyer. Call our firm today to find out how we can fight to protect your rights.