Cecil County Gun Lawyer
Cecil County has extremely strict gun laws. These laws are strict, in part, because of the large increase in violent crimes, as well as the number of crimes which people commit using handguns. The legislature’s primary intent is to preserve peace and protect the public’s interests. If the State has charged you with committing a gun crime, you are likely facing serious penalties, including lofty fines and time in jail.
It generally is highly encouraged to refrain from speaking to law enforcement or a prosecutor without legal counsel present. Anything a person says could be used against them in the court of law. Following a gun-related arrest, contact a dedicated Cecil County gun lawyer as soon as possible. An aggressive criminal defense attorney could work to establish a credible defense and strongly advocate on your behalf. Call and arrange for an appointment to start discussing your potential legal options.
Defining a Firearm
Firearms have a very specific definition in Cecil County. A firearm is a weapon that expels a projectile by using an explosive. The receiver or frame of such a weapon also qualifies as a firearm. The following devices fit within the legal definition of a firearm:
- Antique firearms
- Starter guns
- Short-barreled rifles
- Short-barreled shotguns
Carrying, Wearing, or Transporting a Gun
In Cecil County, it is against the law to carry, wear, or transport a handgun on (or near) the person. This is true whether or not the gun is open or concealed. Moreover, a person may not carry, wear, or knowingly transport a handgun (regardless of whether the gun is open or concealed) in a motor vehicle which is traveling on a public parking lot, roadway, airway, or highway belonging to the State.
In order to sustain a conviction, the person must knowingly transport the handgun. The law presumes that any individual who transports a handgun does so knowingly. This presumption, however, is rebuttable.
In some instances, individuals are legally permitted to carry, wear, or transport a handgun as part of their official equipment. Such is the case with law enforcement officers, members of the armed forces who are on duty (or who are traveling from or to duty), correctional officers, jail wardens, sheriffs, and deputies. A Cecil County gun lawyer may be able to argue that the accused was legally permitted to carry a handgun at the time of their arrest.
Potential Penalties for Unlawfully Carrying, Wearing, or Transporting a Gun
Gun convictions in Cecil County carry steep penalties. A guilty finding or conviction for illegally carrying, wearing, or transporting a handgun can range anywhere from 30 days’ incarceration up to 10 years, depending upon the severity of the crime and circumstances involved.
Moreover, if the accused commits the offense during the commission of another crime, these penalties will likely increase. This can tack on an additional five to 20 years of incarceration, consecutive to the underlying criminal offense.
Other Common Firearm Charges and Penalties
In addition to handgun carrying and transport charges, it is illegal for a person to use or possess a firearm in a school zone. Doing so can result in a maximum five-year prison sentence.
It is also illegal for convicted felons and drug users to possess firearms and ammunition – regardless of the type. If they do, they can go to jail for a maximum of 10 years.
Moreover, it is unlawful for anyone to possess a firearm that is not properly registered. Failing to register a firearm can result in 10 years’ incarceration, without the possibility of parole. A gun attorney in Cecil County could explain these charges and potential penalties in greater detail.
Contact a Cecil County Gun Attorney
In order to conduct a limited search of a suspected gun possessor’s person, the police officer must reasonably believe that the suspect has a handgun on them, that the suspect is dangerous, that it is not practicable to obtain a search warrant, and that the officer must act swiftly to find out what is going on.
If the officer engages in an unreasonable or unwarranted search or seizure – or if you are legally permitted to carry or transport a gun – you may be able to obtain a dismissal of your charge. A Cecil County gun lawyer could examine all of your legal options and potential defenses and aggressively advocate for you in court.