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While the Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution protects your right to possess firearms, it does not apply equally to all people and in all places. Similar to many other states, Alabama legislators have established gun offenses primarily designed to protect others from gun violence. A Crenshaw County gun lawyer may be able to explain your rights to possess firearms and defend you against any related criminal charges.

Federal and state gun laws are complicated, which may make it even more important for an experienced criminal defense attorney to protect your rights. As the consequences of a criminal conviction for a gun offense can be harsh, getting legal advice and advocacy on your behalf may benefit you significantly.

Gun Offenses in Crenshaw County

While some firearms offenses are minor, others are far more serious. Various criminal statutes in Alabama designate locations where it is illegal for individuals to possess firearms. These statutes also prohibit certain persons from possessing firearms and ban the use of firearms in certain situations. Given the circumstances of a defendant’s case, a skilled attorney could mount a strong defense against gun charges.

Alabama Code §13A-11-61.2 designates locations in which individuals may not intentionally possess firearms without the express authorization of a person with authority over the location. These locations include:

  • Law enforcement facilities, jails, and prisons
  • Mental health facilities
  • Courthouses and certain government offices
  • School and professional athletic events not involving firearms

This crime is a Class C misdemeanor, which can result in a jail sentence of up to three months.

Ala. Code §13A-11-72 also makes it illegal for persons to possess a deadly weapon on public school grounds with the intent to do bodily harm to others. This offense is a Class C felony, which may result in harsher penalties. Law enforcement officers are exempt from these requirements.

Illegal Possession of Firearms

Ala. Code §13A-11-72 prohibits certain classes of persons from possessing firearms. These classes include individuals who:

  • Have convictions for violent crimes and offenses or misdemeanor domestic violence
  • Are subject to valid protection orders based on domestic violence
  • Are of an unsound mind
  • Are addicted to drugs
  • Are habitual drunkards
  • Are minors

There are some exceptions to the rule that minors cannot possess or use firearms that a Crenshaw County attorney could help clarify. These exceptions include hunting, fishing, target practice at shooting ranges, participating in shooting competitions, and situations supervised by parents or members of the armed forces and National Guard.

Crenshaw County Concealed Carry Permits

Alabama law requires that individuals obtain permits to carry concealed firearms or to carry them in vehicles. Those who do not have permits may carry unloaded firearms in locked containers or compartments that are not accessible to drivers or passengers. Anyone who violates this law may face fines ranging from $50 to $500 and a jail sentence of up to six months, as per Ala. Code §13A-11-50.

Aside from those whom the law prohibits from possessing firearms, law enforcement authorities have the discretion to deny permits to carry concealed weapons or carry guns in vehicles based on similar grounds. These grounds include an individual being civilly committed as mentally ill or otherwise found mentally unstable, posing a threat to public safety, or facing criminal charges that would prohibit them from possessing firearms if convicted. Individuals who have been denied a permit to carry concealed firearms might benefit from contacting a knowledgeable gun lawyer in Crenshaw County to learn their options.

Call a Crenshaw County Gun Attorney

Regardless of the charge, all gun-related convictions can create a permanent criminal record that will show up on background checks in the future, which may hinder employment. Other potential penalties could include jail time, fines, and further prohibitions on possessing firearms in some cases.

A Crenshaw County gun lawyer may be able to devise a strategy that could enable you to safeguard your rights and protect your future. Call today to learn what your legal options for defense may be.