Richmond Gun & Firearm Possession Defense Lawyer
Protect Your Right to Bear Arms
Police, prosecutors, and judges all take a harsh stance against gun and firearm crimes in Virginia. If you are convicted for unlawfully possessing a firearm or using a gun in the course of another crime, then you will face severe consequences. For many proud gun owners, the worst penalty of a conviction is the removal of their rights to own and use a firearm.
If you have been charged with a weapons offense, then you should already be seeking representation by our Richmond, Virginia gun and firearm possession defense lawyers from Portner & Shure, P.A. We are ready and willing to fight to protect your rights, freedom, finances, and way of life.
To speak with one of our attorneys for a free consultation, call (855) 954-4141 or contact us online.
Prohibition of Firearm Possession In Richmond, Virginia
Several laws in Virginia prohibit possession of a firearm by certain categories of people:
- Virginia Code § 18.2-308.7: People under the age of 18 are prohibited from possessing a firearm.
- Virginia Code § 18.2-308.1:5: People who have been convicted of two misdemeanor drug crimes are prohibited from possessing a firearm for five years from the date of the last conviction.
- Virginia Code § 18.2-308.1:2: People who have been adjudicated legally incompetent, mentally incapacitated, or acquitted of a crime due to insanity are not permitted to possess a firearm.
- Virginia Code § 18.2-308.1:4: People who are subject to protective orders are not permitted to possess a firearm.
- Virginia Code § 18.2-308.2: People who have been convicted of a felony are not permitted to possess a firearm.
The potential penalties for illegally possessing a firearm depend on the underlying reason prohibiting an individual from possessing a firearm.
Unlawfully Carrying a Firearm
Pursuant to Virginia Code § 18.2-308, people are prohibited from carrying a concealed weapon without a permit. Virginia law considers a weapon to be concealed when it is “hidden from common observation when it is observable but is of such deceptive appearance as to disguise the weapon's true nature.” There are several exceptions to this statute, though.
However, a conviction for a first offense is classified as a class 1 misdemeanor and carries a potential penalty of 1 year in jail. There will also likely be steep fines and the chance to lose gun possession rights entirely.
Use of a Firearm During a Violent Crime
Pursuant to Virginia Code §18.2-53.1, it is illegal to use a firearm while committing a crime of violence. Of course, it is also illegal to commit any crime, but adding a firearm into the equation escalates the severity of the illegality and also the potential penalties.
Crimes of violence include:
The use of a firearm while committing a crime of violence is considered a separate offense, meaning you will have to defend against that charge and any other charges you are facing. You can also be penalized separately, creating concurrent or stacking penalties.
A conviction for a first offense carries a minimum prison term of 3 years. Convictions for subsequent offense carry a minimum prison term of 5 years. The mandatory sentence is served consecutively to any other sentences in most cases.
Defenses to Gun Charges In Richmond, Virginia
Prosecutors might rely on evidence that we can prove to be insufficient to reach a conviction. One way to do this is to try to show that you did not have knowledge of the firearm in your possession, or that you did not know it was strictly illegal to possess in your situation. This argument depends on where a weapon was found, such as if you had it locked away in a gun safe.
The prosecution might be precluded from introducing certain evidence at trial if the evidence was obtained via an illegal search. Our efforts could be directed at studying the search warrant – or lack of one – to have all the prosecution’s evidence dismissed.
Our Attorneys Know the Law Inside & Out
Police and prosecutors view firearm and gun cases as a method of preventing future shootings and homicides. Of course, it is well known that extreme penalties for one crime do not deter future crimes.
To protect yourself from the overzealous nature of the opposition, you should create a strong defense with our Richmond, Virginia gun and firearm possession defense attorneys. We have built an excellent reputation in Virginia’s legal community by winning cases that others deemed impossible. We also have worked extensively with clients from various local communities, including Virginia’s Hispanic, Latinx, Chinese (Mandarin and Cantonese), Vietnamese, and Korean communities.
Call (855) 954-4141 to see what a difference our representation can make for your case!