Columbia Gun Lawyer

Criminal charges involving guns are often high-profile incidents that often result in nationwide media attention. Firearms violations are offenses that inherently involve some suggestion of violence, which could be harmful to your ability to secure jobs or other career opportunities in the future. In situations like these, a Columbia gun lawyer could be a valuable ally, especially if you are in need of a legal defense against these specific allegations. A criminal lawyer could make the difference between a lengthy term of incarceration and a more favorable outcome.

Unlawful Use of Weapons in Columbia

State law permits eligible persons to carry concealed firearms without a concealed carry permit. However, the concealed carry permit application process is still in place for individuals who wish to get a carry license that is valid in other states, as well. Despite these rules on concealed carrying of firearms, Missouri Revised Statutes § 570.030 and Missouri Revised Statutes § 571.107 prohibit individuals from carrying guns into specific locations, which include:

  • Law enforcement offices or departments without permission of the chief law enforcement officer
  • Within 25 feet of a polling place
  • Prisons, jails, and detention or correctional institutions
  • Courthouses

Additionally, individuals violate these sections if they carry concealed firearms into any governmental entity meetings, bars, and schools. However, individuals typically can have their guns secured in their vehicles at these locations.

Other actions that may constitute an unlawful use of weapons include discharging firearms into houses, buildings in which people assemble, and vehicles. This section also makes it illegal to negligently or unlawfully use or discharge firearms while intoxicated or discharge a firearm within 100 yards of an occupied school, courthouse, or church. As a gun lawyer in Columbia may advise, unlawful use of weapons also may occur if persons carry guns into schools, buses, or school activities, or if they knowingly possess a controlled substance along with a firearm.

Criminal Charges for Unlawful Possession of Firearms

Under Missouri Revised Statutes § 571.070, knowing possession of firearms by specific classes of people is unlawful. These people include:

  • Anyone who has a felony conviction
  • Individuals who are fugitives from justice
  • Persons who are habitually under the influence of alcohol or drugs
  • Anyone adjudged mentally incompetent

Unlawful possession of firearms is a Class D felony under Missouri law. A conviction for a Class D felony can result in a prison sentence of up to seven years. Given the potential severity of this offense, consulting a gun attorney in Columbia when facing these charges may be wise.

Columbia Firearm Possession and Armed Criminal Action

Any person who allegedly commits a felony offense with deadly weapons, including firearms, can face charges of armed criminal action, as well as their underlying felony charges. A conviction for armed criminal action can result in punishment of not less than three years in prison which may be in addition to the underlying felony offense. Furthermore, individuals will not be eligible for parole, probation, or a suspension of their sentences for at least three calendar years if convicted of armed criminal action.

Penalties for armed criminal action offenses increase when individuals commit second and subsequent offenses. The term of incarceration increases to a punishment of not less than five years for a second offense, and a punishment of not less than ten years for a third or subsequent offense. Likewise, individuals convicted of this offense will be ineligible for parole, probation, or suspension of sentences for five and ten calendar years, respectively.

Talk to a Columbia Gun Attorney for Guidance

Many firearms charges can result in a felony conviction. In addition to incarceration, fines, and probation, you also may carry the stigma of a felony conviction. Once you are convicted of a felony, you no longer are authorized to own or possess firearms at all. As a result, you should strongly consider consulting a Columbia gun lawyer for advice when facing these charges.

Working with legal counsel could impact the outcome of your case. Working together could lead to a favorable defense and allows a professional to help you through these trying times.

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