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Pennsylvania Firearms Lawyer

Have you been charged with a firearms offense in Pittsburgh or western PA? The penalties you may face could include jail time if so. You can’t take chances in these circumstances. If you’ve been charged with violating a Pennsylvania firearms law, you need representation from an experienced criminal defense attorney.

That’s exactly what you’ll find at Stanton D. Levenson, P.A. Law Offices. Our Pennsylvania firearms lawyer can review your case and determine what type of defense strategy is best for you. Contact us to learn more.

Firearm laws that may apply in your case include:

Possessing Instruments of Crime

Possessing an instrument of crime with the intent to use it criminally is a first-degree misdemeanor. A person may be guilty of this crime if they possess a firearm or another weapon concealed on their person. A first-degree misdemeanor is punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.

It is a third-degree felony to use or wear body armor while committing a felony or attempting to commit a felony or to have control, custody, or possession of body armor while committing a felony or attempting to commit one. A third-degree felony is punishable by up to seven years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines.

Persons Not to Possess, Use, Manufacture, Control, Sell or Transfer Firearms

Pennsylvania law restricts those who have been convicted of specific offenses, typically violent crimes, from possessing, using, controlling, selling, transferring, or manufacturing a firearm or obtaining a license to possess, use, control, sell, transfer, or manufacture a firearm.

This law applies to anyone convicted of any of the following crimes:

  • Offenses related to prohibited offensive weapons
  • Offenses related to corrupt organizations
  • Possession of a weapon on school property
  • Murder
  • Voluntary manslaughter
  • Involuntary manslaughter (if the offense is related to reckless use of a firearm)
  • Aggravated assault
  • Assault by prisoner
  • Assault by life prisoner
  • Stalking
  • Offenses related to weapons of mass destruction
  • Kidnapping
  • Unlawful restraint
  • Luring a child into a motor vehicle or structure
  • Rape
  • Involuntary deviate sexual intercourse
  • Aggravated indecent assault
  • Arson and related offenses
  • Causing or risking catastrophe
  • Burglary
  • Criminal trespass (if the offense is a second-degree felony or higher)
  • Robbery
  • Robbery of motor vehicle
  • Theft by unlawful taking or disposition (upon conviction of the second felony offense)
  • Theft by extortion (when accompanied by threats of violence)
  • Offenses related to receiving stolen property (upon conviction of the second felony offense)
  • Offenses related to false reports to law enforcement authorities
  • Impersonating a public servant (if impersonating a law enforcement officer)
  • Intimidation of witnesses or victims
  • Retaliation against a witness, victim, or party
  • Offenses related to escape
  • Offenses related to weapons or implements for escape
  • Offenses related to riot
  • Prohibiting of paramilitary training
  • Facsimile weapons of mass destruction
  • Possession of a firearm by a minor
  • Offenses related to the corruption of minors
  • Sale or lease of weapons or explosives

A person may not legally own a firearm in Pennsylvania if they’ve been convicted of any offense under this law in any state. In addition, they may not own a firearm in Pennsylvania if they’ve been convicted of a similar offense in a state whose laws differ from Pennsylvania’s.

This statute also prohibits the following individuals from owning a firearm in Pennsylvania:

  • Any fugitive from justice, unless they are a fugitive due to a nonmoving or moving summary offense (see Title 75)
  • Anyone convicted under The Controlled Substance, Drug, Device, and Cosmetic Act or an equivalent federal law if their offense was punishable by more than two years in prison or jail
  • Anyone convicted of driving under the influence of alcohol or a controlled substance on three more separate occasions within a span of five years (although this prohibition takes effect after the third offense and only applies to the sale or transfer of firearms)
  • Anyone who, under the Mental Health Procedures Act, has been adjudicated incompetent or otherwise involuntarily committed to a mental institution for certain emergency purposes
  • Anyone residing in the country illegally
  • Anyone adjudicated delinquent under Pennsylvania law or any equivalent federal or state law for certain applicable crimes (such as murder, aggravated assault, etc.)

In addition, a person convicted of an offense under certain Pennsylvania Domestic Relations laws may be prohibited from owning a firearm in Pennsylvania for a specific period. For instance, a person subject to a protection from abuse order may be required to relinquish firearms or other weapons. Under the law, a court order requiring the relinquishment of firearms, other weapons, or ammunition must provide for the return of the firearms, other weapons, or ammunition to the defendant upon expiration of the protection order.

Penalties for offenses under this law can vary depending on the nature of the offense. A PA gun attorney can review your case and explain the penalties you may face.

Firearms Not to Be Carried Without a License

A person who carries a firearm in a vehicle or concealed on their person, except in their home or place of business, without a valid, lawful license may be guilty of a third-degree felony, which is punishable by up to seven years in prison and up to $15,000 in fines. However, a person who is otherwise eligible to possess a valid license who carries a firearm in a vehicle or concealed on their person may be guilty of a first-degree misdemeanor, punishable by up to five years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines.

Prohibited Offensive Weapons

It is a first-degree misdemeanor in Pennsylvania to repair, sell, deal in, use, or possess any offensive weapon. Offensive weapons under the law include:

  • Bombs
  • Grenades
  • Machine guns
  • Sawed-off shotguns (with barrels less than 18 inches)
  • Firearms specially made or adapted for concealment or silent discharge
  • Blackjacks
  • Sandbags
  • Metal knuckles
  • Stun guns
  • Stun batons
  • Tasers
  • Other electric or electronic weapons or other implements for the implementation of serious bodily injury which serve no common lawful purpose

How Firearm Legal Counsel in Pennsylvania Can Help

The above are just a few examples of statutes that may apply in a Pennsylvania firearms offense case. Other relevant laws include:

Our Pennsylvania firearms law firm may help in the following ways if you’re facing charges for any of these types of offenses:

  • Reviewing the facts and details of your case and explaining your legal options
  • Developing a defense strategy tailored to your case and goals
  • Gathering, preserving, and examining evidence
  • Finding weaknesses in the prosecution’s case
  • Negotiating with the prosecution for a plea bargain to reduce your charges or potential penalties
  • Working to have the charges against you dismissed altogether
  • Restoring firearm rights

Navigating the legal process when you’ve been charged with a firearms offense in Pennsylvania can be intimidating. You don’t have to do it alone. Legal representation from a qualified PA firearms defense attorney can make a significant impact on the outcome of your case.

Contact a Pennsylvania Firearms Lawyer

Don’t wait to get in touch with an attorney if you face firearm charges in Pennsylvania. At Stanton D. Levenson, P.A. Law Offices, a Pennsylvania firearms lawyer is ready to protect your rights. We can answer all your questions about firearms laws in Pennsylvania, including those related to a gun trust, firearms dealer licenses, PICS, or your Second Amendment rights. Learn more by contacting us online or calling us to discuss your case.