Fort Myers Gun Violations Defense Lawyers
Florida’s gun laws contain a confusing mix of lawful and unlawful acts when it comes to carrying a weapon openly or concealed, possessing a gun, and using it. Individuals charged with gun violations need the help of skilled and knowledgeable attorneys who understand Florida’s gun statutes and how they are applied in the courts to people charged with gun crimes. At Foley & Wilson Law Firm, our experienced legal team, with a background as former prosecutors and over 45 years of experience in the criminal justice system, offers unparalleled expertise in defending against Florida gun charges. Our professional approach is tailored to treating each client with respect and dignity, ensuring the highest level of skillful representation in these serious legal matters. Contact our experienced Fort Myers gun violations defense lawyers today.
Overview of Florida Gun Laws
Florida’s gun laws, outlined in Chapter 790 of the Florida Statutes, can be confusing to follow, yet they carry severe consequences for violations. Understanding these laws is crucial for anyone owning or handling firearms in the state.
Carrying a Concealed Firearm
Carrying a concealed firearm without a proper license in Florida is a serious offense. Under statutes 790.01 and 790.013, to secure a conviction, the state must prove possession of a firearm and that it was concealed from the ordinary sight of another person. The state must also prove the person is not licensed and is ineligible to get and keep a license under the law. This offense is generally classified as a third-degree felony, potentially leading to significant fines and imprisonment.
While Florida allows licensed individuals to carry concealed weapons, openly carrying firearms is generally prohibited under Statute 790.053. Violation of this law is a second-degree misdemeanor and can result in criminal charges. A person lawfully carrying a concealed weapon can briefly and openly display the firearm without violating the law so long as this is not done “in an angry or threatening manner.”
Unlawful possession of a firearm includes having a gun without legal authorization or possessing it as a convicted felon. The penalties vary based on the individual’s history and circumstances of the possession.
Possession of an Illegal Weapon
Owning or possessing certain types of firearms, like fully automatic weapons without proper authorization, is illegal in Florida and carries severe penalties.
Brandishing a Firearm
Brandishing or displaying a firearm in a threatening or careless manner can lead to criminal charges, especially if it instills fear in others.
Unlawful Discharge of a Firearm
Discharging a firearm in public or on residential property without proper justification is prohibited under Statute 790.15 and can lead to severe legal repercussions.
Unlawful Purchase, Sale, or Distribution of Firearms or Weapons
Engaging in the illegal purchase, sale, or distribution of firearms is a serious offense in Florida, attracting stringent penalties.
Possessing or Using a Gun in a Crime: Understanding Florida’s 10-20-Life Statute
An especially serious gun charge in Florida revolves around the possession or use of a gun during the commission of a crime. Known as the 10-20-Life statute, this law is found in Florida Statutes 775.087. This law mandates specific minimum sentences for crimes involving firearms:
- 10 years: For possessing a firearm during the commission of certain felonies.
- 20 years: If the firearm is discharged during the felony.
- Life sentence: If someone is injured or killed with a firearm during the commission of the felony.
These mandatory sentences underscore the gravity of gun-related offenses in Florida. If charged with a “weapons enhancement” along with any felony, it is critical to understand the potential defenses to this additional charge to avoid the severe consequences of a conviction.
Potential Defenses Against Gun Violations in Fort Myers
Our team at Foley & Wilson Law Firm meticulously analyzes each case to identify all defenses that may be available to secure a dismissal or reduction in charges, negotiate a favorable plea, or fight the charges in court. Potential defenses against Florida gun crime charges may include, among others:
- Lack of Knowledge: Demonstrating the accused was unaware of the firearm’s presence.
- Valid License: Proving legal authorization to carry the firearm.
- Self-Defense: Establishing the firearm was used or carried in self-defense.
- Unlawful Search and Seizure: Arguing that the evidence was obtained through a violation of constitutional rights.
Our seasoned attorneys bring a unique perspective from their experience as former prosecutors, offering strategic defense against gun violation charges. We are committed to guiding our clients through every step of the legal process, providing advice and representation to clients with the highest degrees of skill and professionalism.
Contact Foley & Wilson Law Firm for Help with Gun Violation Charges in Fort Myers
If you or a loved one is facing gun violation charges in Fort Myers, Florida, contact Foley & Wilson Law Firm for a free consultation to discuss your case and find out how we can help. Our expertise in Florida’s gun laws and our dedication to defending your rights make us your ideal legal partners in this challenging time.