Defending A Florida Concealed Weapons Charge
All firearms or weapons charges are very serious in Florida. This is especially true if you have been charged with a concealed weapons or concealed firearms crime. If you or a loved one is facing concealed weapons charges in Florida, please contact an experienced Tampa weapons charges attorney immediately.
Florida has one of the nation’s tougher concealed weapons laws. The law defines the term ‘weapon’ broadly. If you are charged with, and convicted of, carrying a concealed weapon or firearm in Florida, the penalties can vary. The most important distinction is the type of concealed weapon.
- Concealed weapon: This is a first degree misdemeanor offense. It carries a maximum penalty of one year in prison and a significant fine.
- Concealed firearm: This is a third degree felony offense. It carries a maximum penalty of five years in prison and an even larger fine.
Defending the Concealed Weapons or Concealed Firearms Charge
Not all charges are legitimate. In many cases there may be a defense available that can be used to prove that you did not violate Florida’s concealed weapons law. For example:
- Concealed weapons permit: If you were charged with a crime because your Florida concealed weapons license recently expired that may present a viable defense.
- Securely encased: Some concealed weapons or firearms charges stem from someone traveling with their weapon without a permit. In these cases, you may have a valid defense if your weapon was securely encased, in accordance with Florida regulations. For example, if you were traveling in a car with a gun locked in a gun box, then you should not have been charged with a concealed firearms crime. That gun was clearly securely encased. Even if your gun was closed inside the vehicle’s glove box, then you can raise the defense that your weapon was securely encased.
- Not readily available for use: If you weapon was not readily available for use, then you can raise that as a defense for a concealed weapons charge. For example, if a gun was unloaded or locked, then that gun was not available for use.
Remember, an experienced Tampa weapons charge attorney should always review your case to determine the best path forward. There may be a viable defense strategy available in your case. In some cases, it may be better to focus on arguing for a reduction in the charge or a reduction in the punishment. In every case, the defense weapons charges can be complicated. It takes a proper legal defense to avoid the significant penalties that may be involved.
Contact An Experienced Tampa Weapons Charge Defense Attorney
Florida takes concealed weapons charges very seriously. A conviction will often have long lasting ramifications. There is much at stake and you need an experienced attorney who will fight on your behalf. At the Pawlowski//Mastrilli Law Group, our experienced legal team has successfully helped Floridians charged with weapons crimes. We will comprehensively review your case and devise a aggressive legal strategy that fits your situation. Contact our Tampa Bay office today at (813) 803-6518 for a free legal consultation.