What to Do After Your First Gun Offense Charge
After receiving your first gun offense charge, it should go without saying that the first thing you should do is call an attorney. After that, everything that you should do, you do with your attorney’s guidance and support. Gun offenses come with serious charges, and it’s not to take lightly.
Gun charges lead to prison time and thousands of dollars in fines across the many different weapons charges you can face. So don’t wait. Contact the criminal law attorneys at Mazzoni Valvano Szewczyk & Karam as soon as possible.
What are Gun Offenses in Pennsylvania?
Weapon offenses are crimes that include the use or possession of a weapon such as a knife or a firearm. Gun offenses are specific weapon offenses where the weapon used in a crime is a firearm.
Possessing a firearm after being charged with another crime is in itself a gun offense. First gun offense charges can include:
- Robbery with a firearm
- Stealing a firearm
- Owning a firearm without a license
- Owning an unregistered firearm
- Assaulting someone with a firearm
- Bringing a firearm on school grounds (doesn’t apply to authorize security or law enforcement)
What are the Punishments for Your First Gun Offense Charge?
Due to the violent nature and extreme consequences to public health, most gun offenses that include the use of a firearm are felonies. Those surrounding possession and sale are misdemeanors.
Gun offenses such as possessing a stolen or unregistered firearm are misdemeanors of the first degree. Selling a firearm without a sales license, bringing a weapon onto school grounds, or having the intent to use one in a crime are misdemeanors as well. While misdemeanors are considerably less serious than felonies, a first-degree charge is the worst misdemeanor charge someone can receive. These are punishable with up to five years in prison and a $10,000 fine.
Possessing a firearm without a license and with prior charges on your record is a felony of the third degree. This felony is punishable with up to seven years in prison and a fine of $15,000. There are several non-gun offenses that make it illegal for you to possess a firearm and/or a license for one. These include:
- Being found guilty of committing any violent crime
- Being found guilty of committing any felony
- Having a history of mental illness (only specific conditions)
- Being involuntarily committed to a mental ward or hospital
- Being found guilty of drug/controlled substance crimes
- Having received a PFA
- Having a criminal record with multiple previous charges
- Being deemed mentally incompetent by a court
- Being a fugitive of the law
- Having multiple previous DUI convictions
Changing, altering, or in any way removing the identification numbers of a gun is a felony of the second degree. This is punishable with up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $25,000.
If You Face Your First Gun Offense Charge, Call MVSK Law
Gun offenses are no joke. They are not something you can face alone. Do not speak to the police, and the first chance you get, call the criminal law attorneys at Mazzoni Valvano Szewczyk & Karam. We can help protect your rights, fight for your freedom, and make sure you aren’t unfairly charged. Contact us today.