pulling gun out of jacket pocket

Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Attorney in Ocean County

Ocean County NJ Unlawful Weapon Possession Lawyer

Gun Charges Defense Attorneys in Toms River, New Jersey

New Jersey weapons laws are stringent and broadly applicable, often affecting non-residents who are unaware of the State’s strict policies relating to weapons and firearms. Unbeknownst to many, New Jersey does not acknowledge out-of-state gun permits, so a person traveling through New Jersey with a firearm that they legally obtained in another state may possess an illegal gun as soon as they cross state lines. The only way to avoid criminal charges for unlawful possession of a weapon is to obtain a New Jersey gun permit or to abide by the strict New Jersey laws regarding transportation of weapons. Unfortunately, many residents and non-residents are simply unaware of the rules and regulations for possession of weapons in New Jersey, and they find themselves charged with a crime they didn’t know they were committing. When you are charged with unlawful possession of a weapon or another weapons offense in New Jersey, it is essential to have an experienced weapons defense attorney in your corner. At the Law Offices of William Proetta Criminal Law, our Ocean County criminal defense lawyers regularly work to have weapons charges dismissed or successfully resolved for clients throughout New Jersey, including in Toms RiverJacksonBrickLakewoodManchester, and Little Egg Harbor. To discuss your specific case and begin building your best defense, contact us at (848) 238-2100 for for a free initial consultation with a skilled Ocean County weapons defense lawyer.

Unlawful Possession of a Weapon in New Jersey: N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5

The New Jersey Criminal Code addresses charges for unlawful possession of a weapon in section N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5, delineating the specific degree of the charges associated with different weapons classifications. An unlawful possession of a weapon offense can fall within any of the following categories:

Machine Guns: Any person who knowingly has in his possession a machine gun or instrument or device adaptable for use as a machine gun without being licensed is guilty of a crime of the second degree.

Handguns: Any person who knowingly has in his possession any handgun, including an antique handgun without first having obtained a permit to carry same is guilty of a crime of the second degree. However, if the gun is in the nature of an air gun or pellet pistol then the crime is of the third degree.

Rifles or Shotguns: Any person who knowingly has in her possession any rifle or shotgun without first having obtained a firearms purchaser identification card is guilty of a crime of the third degree. Unless otherwise permitted by law, any person who knowingly has in his possession any loaded rifle or shotgun is guilty of a crime of the third degree.

Other Prohibited Weapons: Any person who knowingly has in his possession any other weapon under circumstances not manifestly appropriate for such lawful uses as it may have is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.

NJ Penalties for Unlawful Possession of a Weapon

4th Degree Unlawful Possession of a WeaponOther Prohibited WeaponsUp to 18 months in NJ state prison
3rd Degree Unlawful Possession of a WeaponAir guns, pellet pistols, rifles, or shotgunsBetween 3 – 5 years in NJ state prison
2nd Degree Unlawful Possession of a WeaponHandguns and machine guns5 – 10 years NJ state prison

The Graves Act: N.J.S.A. 2C:43-6(c) – In addition to the penalties outlined above, the New Jersey Graves Act applies to unlawful possession of a weapon charges that involve handguns, machine guns, rifles, and shotguns. The Graves Act requires the imposition of a minimum term of imprisonment and parole ineligibility fixed at, or between, one-third and one-half of a sentence imposed, or 3 years, whichever is greater.

Definition of a Weapon under New Jersey Law

New Jersey law defines a “weapon” as anything capable of inflicting serious bodily injury. The term “weapon” can be used to refer to defaced firearms, gravity knives, switchblade knives, daggers, dirks, stilettos or other dangerous knives, billies, blackjacks, metal knuckles, sandclubs, slingshots, cesti or similar leather bands studded with metal filings or razor blades imbedded in wood, stun guns, or other devices that project, release, or emit tear gas or any other substance intended to produce temporary physical discomfort or permanent injury through being vaporized or otherwise dispensed in the air. This also includes components that can be readily assembled into a weapon.

Contact Jackson NJ Illegal Gun Defense Lawyers

Our highly experienced criminal defense lawyers represent clients throughout Ocean County who have been charged with unlawful possession of handguns and other weapons, including in Seaside Heights, Lacey Township, Long Beach Township, Ocean Township, Berkeley Township, and Point Pleasant. For more information about your weapons charges and how we can help build a case strategy customized to the facts of your case, contact our Toms River offices today at today at (848) 238-2100 for a free consultation with an Ocean County weapons possession lawyer.