Unlawful Possession of a Firearm
Under both Texas and federal law, certain people may lose the right to carry a firearm. In most cases, these include people who have been convicted of a felony or any domestic violence offense in any state. This is one of the harshest penalties that can accompany a criminal record.
With a conviction on your record, you are not allowed to possess a firearm until your civil rights have been restored, a legal process you must initiate. This means you cannot possess any handguns, shotguns, hunting rifles and any other type of gun, other than antique guns made before 1899.
San Antonio Unlawful Firearm Possession Lawyer
If you face charges for the offense of possessing a firearm when the law prohibits you from doing so, contact a skilled San Antonio gun crime attorney at Goldstein, Goldstein, Hilley & Orr. We have more than four decades of experience representing people facing criminal accusations, including weapons offenses. We will make sure your rights are represented and fight to get the best possible outcome in your case.
Our San Antonio-based attorneys have experience representing people charged with firearms and weapons offenses under both Texas and federal law. We do not charge for a telephone consultation. Call (210) 226-1463 to discuss your case with a skilled and experienced attorney.
Info on Unlawful Firearm Possession Charges
- What Charges Can a Person With a Felony Record Face for Firearm Possession?
- Can I Carry a Firearm After a Family Violence Charge?
- How Do I Get My Right to Carry a Firearm Back?
Under Texas Penal Code sec. 46.04, a person who has been convicted of a felony cannot possess a firearm at all for five years after completing his or her sentence. This means the completion of the jail sentences and any parole or probation.
Five years after completion of a sentence for a felony, a person is permitted to possess a gun on the premises of where he or she lives, but nowhere else.
If the conviction in question was from another jurisdiction, such as another state, the law considers the conviction a felony if the offense is a felony under Texas law, contains all the elements of a felony under Texas law or is punishable by a year or more in prison.
Possession is a third-degree felony, punishable by up to five years in prison.
Similarly, it is illegal under 18 U.S.C. § 922 for any person who has been convicted of an offense in any jurisdiction that can result in a term of imprisonment for more than a year to receive a firearm. This is the common law definition of “felony.” It does not matter if the accused served less than a year — only that the potential for punishment was more than a year.
A person who has been convicted of a Class A misdemeanor assault charge against a person who is defined as a family or household member in Chapter 71 of the Texas Family Code – including a spouse, parent or child – may not possess a firearm anywhere, including his or her home, until five years after completing their sentence (including any probation).
Someone under a protective order for an accusation of domestic violence also may not carry a firearm under the order has expired.
Federal law also prohibits a person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor offense of domestic violence from carrying a firearm in 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(9).
Under state law, a person convicted of a felony offense may have his or her civil rights restored, including the right to bear arms. The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles makes a recommendation for a person applying for restoration. The Governor makes the final decision.
To qualify, a person must meet the requirements of Texas Administrative Code Rule 143.12. The Board will restore rights under “extreme and unusual circumstances” that prevent the applicant from gaining a livelihood. The applicant must:
- Have received a full pardon
- Have completed his or her sentence, including any parole or probation
- Provide proof that he or she has applied for exemption from appropriate federal authorities
Finding A Lawyer for an Unlawful Gun Possession Charge in Bexar County
If you are facing state or federal charges in San Antonio for possessing a firearm after a felony or domestic violence conviction, contact a skilled attorney at Goldstein, Goldstein, Hilley & Orr. We have more than 40 years of experience representing people accused of crimes in Bexar County. Call us today at (210) 226-1463.