Los Angeles Gun Crimes Lawyers
Being convicted of gun charges can forever alter the course of your life. With California having some of the most stringent gun laws in the nation, it is easy to run afoul of these rules by accident or due to a misunderstanding. Fortunately, Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP is here aid you in your time of need.
At Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP, we will leave no stone unturned in terms of your defense. We will explain the charges you face and then help you resolve them as quickly as we possibly can. Do not let an accusation take away your freedom and good name! Call our office at (213) 688-0460 to schedule a free consultation and let us start your defense.
California gun laws allow most adults age 21 and older in the state to buy a firearm without a license. Unless you are prohibited by law from owning a handgun, you may legally keep a gun within your house or a place of business. You may also legally carry a gun from place to place in a locked container.
The following people are prohibited from acquiring or possessing a gun in California, and if found in position of a gun, can face prosecution:
- Any individual convicted of a felony offense.
- Any person who is addicted to narcotics.
- An individual with two or more convictions under California's law against brandishing a weapon, Penal Code 417.
- Individuals convicted of certain misdemeanor offenses, like a charge of Child Endangerment (California Penal Code 273).
- Any person who suffers from mental illness.
- An individual placed on two involuntary psychiatric holds in a year is banned from owning a firearm for life.
- People under the age of 18 my not have personal possession of a firearm, and people under 21 years old are barred from purchasing firearms.
California Penal Code 29810 mandates that people convicted of the requisite crimes must relinquish their firearms to authorities. Also, if you are prohibited from owning a gun, you are also prohibited from owning ammunition, and even magazines.
Some common gun charges in California include:
Possession of an Unlicensed Firearm: If a person is in possession of an unlicensed firearm in his home or work, he can be charged with a misdemeanor. If you take the unlicensed firearm outside these locations, you can face felony charges and a minimum sentence of three years.
Possession of an Illegal Weapon or Banned Accessories: If an individual is found to be in possession of a variety of banned weapons and accessories such as stun guns, assault weapons, large-capacity magazines, armor-piercing rounds, and silencers, he can have gun charges brought against him.
Barred Individuals Being in Possession of Firearms: Convicted felons, individuals convicted of certain misdemeanors, and persons addicted to narcotics are not allowed to own, possess, purchase, or receive guns in the state of California.
Carrying a Concealed Firearm: It is illegal to carry a concealed firearm on your person or inside of a vehicle. The gun must be unloaded and in a locked box if you are transporting it either on your person or insider of a vehicle.
Carrying a Loaded Gun in Public: Open carry of loaded guns is illegal in California unless you have a permit. If you carry a gun in certain restricted places - like schools or university grounds or government buildings - you will face additional charges.
Brandishing a Weapon: If an individual draw, displays, or uses a firearm or deadly weapon in an angry or threatening manner, he can be charged with brandishing a weapon. If a person is injured while a weapon is being brandished, the offender in question will face additional penalties.
Assault with a Firearm: Any attempt to injure someone with a firearm is considered assault, regardless of whether an injury is inflicted or not.
Shooting at Dwellings: It is a violation of the law to shoot at or near buildings or vehicles. The individual firing the gun, and any person found aiding and abetting the shooter, can be charged. Different penalties will apply depending on whether the building or vehicle was occupied at the time of the shooting.
California is famously one of the strictest states when it comes to gun possession, and the penalties are just as thorough and harsh. Most gun crimes are either wobblers or felonies, meaning you could automatically lose your right to possess a gun for the rest of your life upon conviction. But certain misdemeanor convictions can also result in a ban of up to 10 years, such as with domestic violence, brandishing a weapon, and assault.
For brandishing a weapon, possessing an unlicensed or illegal firearm, and carrying a concealed weapon, a defendant can face:
- Misdemeanor: Up to one year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine.
- Felony: Up to three years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
When a gun is discharged or someone is injured during a crime, a defendant may face even more serious charges, including:
Assault with a Firearm: For a misdemeanor, you face up to one year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine and for a felony, up to four years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine. These maximum penalties apply to generic firearms, but this charge can be enhanced in cases involving semiautomatics, assault rifles, and certain rifles. A defendant can also face additional charges if the victim was a police officer, firefighter, or the defendant committed another crime.
Shooting at Dwellings: For a misdemeanor, you face up to one year in jail and/or a $1,000 fine and for a felony, up to seven years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
Lastly, if you commit a separate felony crime with a gun, you may run across California’s “10-20-Life” law. Under Penal Code 12022.53 PC, if you are convicted of a felony crime while using a gun, you can face an additional 10 years in prison. If you actually fired a gun, then the sentence becomes 20 years, and if someone is seriously injured or dies, then you face 25 years to life. Beating these charges requires a strong defense headed up by a diligent and experienced legal team.
Each case is different, and California’s complex gun laws are intimidating for a defendant. But if you work with a defense attorney at Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP, your case will be handled with professionalism, experience, and skill. When you hire our law firm, you not only get the knowledge of a veteran defense lawyer – you get a whole team of trial attorneys you can rely on. We will review every detail of your case, research the nature of your arrest, and aggressively defend you in the courtroom. We have an in-depth understanding of Los Angeles’s courts and know how to counter every one of the prosecution’s arguments.
Depending on your circumstances, we may be able to use several defenses, including:
- You had a permit for your gun.
- You only fired in self-defense or in the defense of others.
- Your gun accidentally discharged.
- The police illegally searched your property and seized evidence.
Remember, it is up to the prosecution to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that you violated a California gun law. If they cannot clearly outline how you broke the law, then you do not deserve to go to prison. Our attorneys can work through the details of your case and develop a strong defense to protect your freedom.
Do not let gun charges, including a charge of arms trafficking, throw a wrench into your life. Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP will aggressively defend clients from any and all charges that they face. We know the ins and outs of criminal defense in California, and we have a track record of victory.
To learn more about how we can defend you or a loved one from gun charges, contact our Los Angeles criminal defense lawyers to schedule a free consultation. Call Werksman Jackson & Quinn LLP at (213) 688-0460 to discuss your case and let us fight for you.
Recent Case Results
- Complete Dismissal of Molestation Charges
Attorney Mark Werksman’s 29 year old client was falsely accused of molesting two neighborhood children and was subsequently charged with felony child molestation, with a significant prison sentence hanging over his head should he be convicted. Instead, at the preliminary hearing Werksman was able to convince the court to grant his client a complete dismissal of any charges.
- Decision Set Aside
Client, a college student in a faulty Title IX case, was awarded $130,000 in attorney fees.
- Probation with No Jail Time for Drug Money Laundering Charge
Wilmington man accused in New York federal court of laundering drug money through the sale of laptop computers. Mark was able to get the case transferred to federal court in Los Angeles, where he convinced the United States Attorney to reduce the charges. His client was sentenced to probation with no jail time on a misdemeanor conviction.