There are many possible gun charges under Pennsylvania law. The Commonwealth takes firearms seriously, and facing accusations of many of these offenses could be very stressful and even detrimental to your life.
Some of the main gun charges in Pennsylvania include:
- Possessing a gun without a license
- Possessing a prohibited weapon, such as machine guns
- Possessing a gun without a serial number
If you or a loved one face any of these charges in Pennsylvania, you have the right to partner with a defense attorney. They can advocate for your legal rights and protect your future.
Some Commonly Violated Firearms Charges in Pennsylvania
The most common gun charges in Pennsylvania come from violations of Pennsylvania’s firearms laws. Examples include:
Violations of Section 6105
Title 18, Section 6105, is one of the most serious firearms charges you can face in Pennsylvania. This law addresses possession of a gun by someone who is prohibited from owning or having a firearm. This could include:
- Someone with a previous felony conviction
- Someone running from the law (“a fugitive from justice”)
- Undocumented immigrants
- Those not honorably discharged from the military
- Someone with three or more drunk driving convictions
- Those who are mentally incompetent or who were involuntarily committed to a mental health facility
- A person who has a Protection from Abuse Order (PFA) taken against them
This offense is graded as a second-degree felony, and a conviction could come with ten years in prison and significant fines.
Violations of Section 6106
Title 18, Section 6106 is the statute that prohibits possession of a gun without an appropriate license. This could occur in many ways, and it is a good idea to pay careful attention to when and where you carry your firearms when you do not have a license.
This is a felony of the third degree and could call for up to seven years in prison.
Violations of Section 6110.2
Section 6110.2 of Title 18 covers firearms without a serial number. It is illegal to have a gun with the manufacturer’s serial number altered, removed, or otherwise obliterated. This is a second-degree felony and could come with a prison sentence of up to ten years.
Violations of Section 908
Title 18, Section 908 contains the Commonwealth’s laws against prohibited weapons. When it comes to firearms, this includes many weapons covered by the federal National Firearms Act (NFA) and other federal laws. This includes automatic machine guns, guns with silencers, guns made or adapted for concealment, shotguns sawed off to less than 18 inches, and more.
This is actually the only offense on this list that could be charged as a misdemeanor. It is generally a misdemeanor of the first degree. A conviction could come with a jail sentence and fines. The maximum time in jail could be up to five years.
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Consequences of Pennsylvania Firearms Violations Are Significant
Pennsylvania takes firearms violations seriously. If convicted, you could have a felony on your criminal record. This would prevent you from owning firearms in the future, prevent you from getting some jobs and occupational licenses, cost you thousands of dollars, and perhaps put you behind bars for years.
To avoid this, it is important to ensure you follow all applicable laws and only carry your guns legally, do not own illegal weapons, and do not attempt to purchase a firearm if you cannot own or possess one under the law.
If you have questions about whether you can purchase a gun, discussing your options with a criminal defense attorney familiar with the laws is a good idea before you apply. In addition, it is paramount that you tell the truth when applying to purchase a gun. You could also face criminal charges for giving incorrect or incomplete information on your application and other necessary forms.
How an Attorney Can Develop a Defense for Gun Charges in Pennsylvania
If you already face allegations or charges of a firearms violation, you should speak with a criminal defense lawyer. They will be able to determine a solid defense based on the facts of your case.
It may be possible to clear your name, negotiate a plea agreement, reduce the charges against you, or otherwise get a more favorable outcome in your criminal case. You can learn more about how we can build your case when you call us.
Discuss Your Options with Our Criminal Defense Team
At the Law Offices of M.J. Snyder, LLC, we help people facing firearms charges in Pennsylvania. We offer free consultations and can discuss your legal options.
We’re here to help you get a favorable outcome in your case. Contact us today to talk about your case, the charges you face, and how we might approach your defense. We can also represent you in questioning, court appearances, and more.