Gun & Weapons Crimes Are Treated Very Seriously By District Attorneys Throughout New York State
Gun control laws in Islip are some of the most restrictive in the country. For example, cops in New York often assume that if a person is in possession of a firearm, they are breaking the law. It’s a gun owner’s burden to register their gun and demonstrate that this was done correctly and to show proof when asked.
Criminal accusations involving gun use tend to be much more severe than those not involving firearms. A dedicated Islip gun lawyer can defend a person’s right to keep and bear arms after a firearm conviction. Attorney Mike Schillinger provides aggressive defense representation for his clients charged with gun offenses and has experience helping people like you protect their freedom in court.
How Does State Law Control the Possession of Guns?
New York has strict registration requirements for firearms. Under New York Penal Law §265.01-b, anyone who possesses a gun is guilty of a Class E felony, meaning that they could go to prison for up to four years if convicted. However, the statute allows people to legally possess certain firearms if they register them with the State properly.
For example, according to state law, anyone who wishes to possess a gun must register it with the New York State Police, which maintains a database of all guns legally held in the state. This database contains information about each gun owner, including their:
- Date of Birth
- Social Security Number
In addition to this information, the database includes details about the firearm, like the color, caliber, type, etc.
Because of the potentially severe consequences, it’s important that you speak with an experienced criminal defense attorney as soon as possible to minimize the potential penalties. Some of these can include the following:
- A criminal record that can seriously impact your future
- Loss of your right to own a gun
- Higher education issues such as expulsion or revocation of your financial aid
- Career implications such as suspension or revocation of any professional licenses
- Potential negative immigration consequences up to and including removal
- Forfeiture of some of your assets, including money or your vehicle recovered during the alleged crime
- Hefty fines and court fees
- Jail or prison sentences
An experienced gun lawyer in Islip can help people who are facing allegations of illegal gun possession. Whether the gun was never theirs or the gun was in fact legally registered, we work hard to defend our clients’ rights in court.
Common Gun Related Offenses
Depending on the circumstances, possessing a gun unlawfully can result in various charges, ranging in severity from a misdemeanor to a class B violent felony. Depending on the type of gun possessed, the condition of it, the number of guns possessed, and many other factors, the charges and penalties associated with the allegations can vary greatly.
Criminal Possession of a Firearm
One of the most common felony gun charges that we see in New York is PL § 265.03, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Second Degree. Typically, folks who have been arrested for this are accused of “possessing a loaded firearm with the intent to use it unlawfully against another.” If you have been charged with this, it’s imperative that you take it seriously, because it is classified as a C violent felony and carries a mandatory minimum period of incarceration of 3 ½ years, even for a first-time offender. An experienced criminal defense attorney will be able to identify issues with the D.A.’s case, including whether the gun was actually in your possession, whether it was operable, and whether the police even obtained it pursuant to a lawful search.
Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the Fourth Degree
In New York, it is illegal to possess a number of different weapons, including weapons that are legal in other states. These can include switchblades, electronic stun guns, brass knuckles and several other weapons.
This can also include common items such as a box cutter when the police argue that you had the intent to use it unlawfully against another person. In fact, it is fairly common for people to get arrested just for carrying a kitchen knife and saying that “they use it for protection.” Criminal possession of a weapon in the fourth degree is a class A misdemeanor and is punishable by up to a year in jail.
Possessing a Firearm at the Airport
A charge we see pop up a lot in Queens County specifically, these tend to be situations where individuals who live outside of New York are traveling and bring their guns with them not realizing that it is illegal in New York state. The consequences of these cases can be severe. An experienced criminal defense attorney in Islip can often help negotiate with the District Attorney’s Office and work out a result that allows the client to keep their firearms license.
Charges for Using a Gun During a Crime
Allegations that a person committed a crime with the aid of a gun can sometimes be far more serious than illegally possessing the firearm itself. Whether a person legally owns a gun or not, using a firearm as a tool in a crime is a serious matter. For example, assault crimes involving gun use are automatically charged at the felony level. Specifically, N.Y. Pen. Law §120.05 makes any assault involving the use of a deadly weapon a D violent felony, which can carry a minimum of 2 years in prison, even for a first-time offender.
Even if a defendant never discharges a firearm during an incident, its presence alone can be a factor in the charges. The inherent fear resulting from the sight of these weapons could lead to a dangerous situation, and the law treats these allegations accordingly. Illegal acts made worse by firearm use include:
- Sexual Abuse
- Criminal possession of a weapon
- Among others
Under New York State law, many of these can be elevated to a felony that could lead to multiple years in prison if a court convicts you. However, an experienced criminal defense attorney in Islip will work to fight back against these harsh allegations.
Reach Out to a Gun Attorney in Islip Now to Begin Building Your Defense
The United States Constitution outlines the right to bear arms. However, state law has severely limited this right by the impositions that New York imposes upon legal gun owners. Anyone possessing a firearm can face charges if they have not registered it properly, or even if they bring it into an area that New York has deemed a “safe zone”. Likewise, individuals may be charged if they use a gun while committing another crime.
An Islip gun lawyer will fight to protect your rights in court. Contact our office today to let Mike start fighting for you.