Penalties for Possession of Prohibited Dangerous Weapons in New York

Penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York can impact cases that focus more on the usage of a weapon rather the possession of it. If an individual's intent was to cause a serious physical injury and they did so, the crime is catapulted to First Degree Assault. That offense is considered an even more serious felony with significantly more potential incarceration. Speaking with an experienced criminal attorney regarding your case can help you protect your future. 

Frequency of Dangerous Weapons Offenses

It is routine that people are charged with offenses alongside penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York. A simple assault with a physical injury that is a class “A” misdemeanor. The use of a firearm or other weapon bumps up the charge.

An individual can be charged with Criminal Possession of a Weapon if they possess a dangerous instrument with the intention of using it to unlawfully against another.

Implications of using an Object as a Weapon

The way a person uses something that is otherwise an everyday item can become a weapon charge. When something is an actual weapon such as a gun or a knife, it could be a crime by itself.

When a firearm or other weapon is used in a crime the underlying offenses, for example, can go from a Third-Degree Assault misdemeanor to a felony First Degree Assault. Similarly, a crime can go from a Third-Degree Burglary or Robbery to a First-Degree offense. The potential incarceration and implications of the same conduct involving a firearm are often if not always felonious and life altering.

Required Proof for Conviction

In the state of New York, the prosecution needs to show that the person knew they possessed the weapon. When someone possesses a gravity knife, it is not necessary that the person knows the possession is wrongful in the state of New York.

A person does not necessarily need to use the weapon unlawfully against another person. They must have knowledge of its possession and the intent to possess it. When it is a per se weapon, there is a strict liability analysis once it is established that the accused was aware and knowingly possessed the weapon in question.

Elevation of a Criminal Offense

Committing another crime and displaying what appears to be a firearm can elevate a charge to a violent crime considering the use of a deadly weapon. A violent crime could be a class B violent felony with a minimum of five years.

Use of a dangerous weapon elevates the crime a person is charged with. If the person did not use a weapon or a dangerous weapon, the charge is significantly less. However, the accused can still face both misdemeanors and felonies. Speak with an attorney regarding possible penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York and how to mitigate the charges. 

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