New York City and State Gun Lawyer
New York City and State have some of the toughest gun regulations in the country. As known by firearms lawyers routinely practicing in city, county, and local courts, lawmakers and police departments such as the NYPD in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Queens, and the County or State Police throughout Westchester, Putnam, and Rockland, heavily regulate the possession, sale, transfer, and manufacturing of firearms. Because of these pressures and District Attorneys’ strict policies, if you are arrested for and charged with a gun-related offense you will potentially – and likely will - face a serious and extensive prison sentence. Only slightly less concerning, even if you escape incarceration, the decimation of your employment and professional licenses and certifications looms.
While there are Constitutional protections allowing citizens to own and possess guns, the laws for ownership and use are complex both in this state and throughout the nation. Have no misgivings. If you have been charged with any gun offense – whether for having a glock, assault weapon, or “old school” revolver, do not underestimate the respective offense. An experienced New York gun lawyer can help explain not only the crimes but implement and identify the right strategy to minimize your legal exposure. Aided by an experienced criminal defense attorney who can work with prosecutors or confront them, your opportunity and likelihood to have your charges lowered or dismissed, or the legality of your arrest and search successfully challenged is far greater than with counsel who has limited experience navigating the justice system.New York Gun Laws: Strict Enforcement
New York State Penal Law Section 265 establishes the definition of what constitutes a firearm, and has expanded the definition over the years to include the following:
- Pistol or revolver
- Certain shotguns
- Certain rifles
- Modified shotguns and rifles
- Assault weapons
This section of the Penal Code also establishes the laws for possession in the State of New York. In addition to prescribing types of weapons, these statutes also set forth various crimes for possession or use. Some of the most common gun charges – defined and examined in the above link – include:
- Criminal Possession of a Firearm
- Criminal possession of a Weapon on School Grounds
- Unlawful Possession of Weapons by a Person Under the Age of 16
- Criminal Possession of a Dangerous Weapon
- Criminal Sale of a Firearm
- Criminal Sale of a Firearm with the Aid of a Minor
- Criminal sale of a Firearm to a Minor
- Criminal Purchase or Disposal of a Firearm
- Criminal Use of a Firearm
If you have been arrested for a weapons charge, even if you received an Appearance Ticket or Desk Appearance Ticket for a lower level offense, the allegation is likely to be one of or the most serious matters of your life. With the real threat of imprisonment, even if you avoid “Upstate”, there are still hurdles ahead in both your personal and professional life. Whether you made your best efforts to comply with the TSA, are legally licensed in your home state, and attempted to check your firearm at LaGuardia or JFK airport, you can still face the same harsh and frightening penalties as if the police arrested you the streets or a vehicle.Potential Penalties: From Bad to Frighteningly Worse
New York State has not only gained a reputation nationally for having some of the most complex gun laws in the country but the strictest penalties as well. In fact, prison sentences are routinely mandatory for both first-time offenders and those with extensive histories. Some possible sentences include:
- Prison sentences – Ranging in severity from misdemeanors to Class B felonies. This means that even if you have an out-of-state permit, if you have a loaded pistol, a judge has to incarcerate you to a minimum of three and a half years to a maximum of fifteen years upon conviction. That aside, depending on the particular offense and degree, you may be sentenced anywhere from a up to one year in jail for “lower” misdemeanors and up to 25 years for a Class B felony.
- Fines – Although not common, the prosecutors can seek, and judges can impose fines for these type of charges. A person who is convicted of a Class A misdemeanor may face a fine of up to $1,000. However, a person who is charged and convicted of a more serious crime such as a Class B felony, may face exponentially greater fines.
There are many other implications resulting from a gun-related charge, such as being denied certain jobs, losing a visa status or facing deportation, and “simply” having an indelible and life long criminal record.Your Defense, Your Life, Your Future
While any arrest or indictment is life altering, there are few crimes that mandate incarceration and are as strictly enforced as those found in Penal Law Article 265.00. Whether you were merely traveling through the state, checking your lawful possessed out-of-state pistol at an airport, or you were in a car and the police presumed you exercised control over a weapon you knew nothing about, there is no substitute for experience, knowledge, and advocacy. The former Manhattan prosecutors and weapon possession attorneys at Crotty Saland PC are not only seasoned from practicing in courtroom trenches on both sides of the law, we can help you understand your options, implement the right strategies, and defend your legal rights to put you in the best position to walk away with a story to tell instead of a prison identification number issued by the Department of Corrections.
Call the New York criminal lawyers and former New York City prosecutors at (212) 312-7129 or contact us online today.