Columbia Gun Penalties

People in the United States are entitled to their Second Amendment rights, however, those rights come with the knowledge and agreement to follow rules concerning how to safely carry, transport, and use firearms. When people violate those rules, they may find themselves facing Columbia gun penalties. The best way to combat these penalties is by getting in touch with a dedicated gun lawyer that could work diligently to protect their rights and mitigate potential penalties that they may face.

How the Severity of Gun Offenses May Impact Penalties

The average Columbia gun penalties result from an offense that could be low level like having a firearm on their person or in a vehicle to a felon in possession of a firearm. The former are misdemeanors that carry maximums of three years in jail, and the latter is a felony with a minimum mandatory jail term of five years, plus connected other felonies, depending on what was going on. Additional penalties will apply for a person found guilty of a gun offense in Columbia if it is used in the commission of a certain crime or if they are prohibited from having it.

Factors that Influence Firearm Consequences

There are certain factors that influence how penalties differ for various gun offenses. These factors depend on the nature of the person, their history, and the utilization of the gun itself. If somebody has a gun in their vehicle because they just forgot to put it in the trunk while driving in Maryland, they may not go to jail, or if they do, it would be a minimal sentence, perhaps measured in days or weeks. If someone has a gun and commits an assault, the gun possession alone can have separate charges, but they face a first-degree assault charge that is a felony carrying a 25-year maximum imprisonment.

Minimum and Maximum Penalties

Mandatory minimum Columbia gun penalties apply only to felonies, such as a crime of violence or drug trafficking. Maximum penalties allowed in Columbia for gun-related offenses could apply in a case in which there is no separate gun charge, but someone committed a robbery using one. That is armed robbery. Others would be assault in the first-degree or a murder, which would carry a penalty of up to life imprisonment, again without being accompanied by a separate gun charge. Thus, a gun charge would not carry a maximum penalty, but its use in a more serious crime would.

How the Location of Where a Gun Was Possessed Can Impact the Charge

Where a person is while illegally possessing a firearm can make a difference in the penalties they could face, but the difference is likely to have more to do with the type of possession. Location would be an issue if somebody has it in their vehicle and it is not stored properly, but they otherwise are allowed to have a gun, that would be relatively benign.

If someone is prohibited from having it or they have a felony record, even if they are not doing anything wrong with a firearm, just having it is still possession, a felony in their case that can lead to significant incarceration, including minimum mandatories. Of course, if the firearm is used in a crime that could significantly impact the severity of the penalties someone may face.

The Benefit of Working with a Columbia Gun Attorney

An attorney can help a person facing Columbia gun penalties first by being their guide. They could explore possible avenues of protecting against the charges, whether that means challenging the prosecution’s ability to prove that the person was the one in possession of the firearm or the idea that it met the definition of a firearm. If the gun cannot fire, it is not a gun. Either of those challenges could mitigate the charges. The arguments also could be used in negotiating with the state to reduce the charge. The attorney should have the knowledge, experience, connections, and relationships to get a more favorable result. Consult an atttorney today and know that you are in capable hands.