Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Lawyer in Camden, NJ
Tenacious South Jersey Gun Crimes Attorney Defends Clients Against Charges of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon in Burlington County and Camden County, NJ
New Jersey enforces some of the strictest gun laws in the country, and the major media attention surrounding various gun control controversies in recent years has encouraged even more strict and severe punishments for unlawful possession of a weapon in NJ. Criminal weapons charges can even be brought against individuals carrying spring-loaded weapons, such as BB or airsoft guns. In some cases, the state may even charge an individual with unlawful possession of a weapon if they cross into New Jersey from a neighboring state without a valid permit to carry the weapon in the state of New Jersey–regardless of whether carrying the weapon was lawful in the neighboring state.
If you have been charged with unlawful possession of a handgun or other weapon in New Jersey, it is imperative that you have a qualified NJ criminal defense attorney on your side. Contact South Jersey criminal defense lawyer Stephen R. Piper now to discuss your criminal weapons charges.
Why Choose Gloucester Township Gun Crimes Attorney Stephen Piper to Handle Your NJ Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Case?
The primary gun control statute in New Jersey is known as the Graves Act, and it is codified in N.J.S.A. 2C:43-6. The Graves Act makes most unlawful possession of a weapon crimes second degree offenses, meaning that the conviction will lead to a mandatory prison sentence of between five (5) and ten (10) years. The judge has no discretion to impose a lighter sentence, and any individual convicted under the Graves Act will be sentenced to a minimum of five (5) years in state prison. Because of special provisions in the Graves Act, convicted individuals are not even eligible for parole until they have served at least three (3) years in prison.
An aggressive and relentless criminal defense attorney is a necessary asset in New Jersey unlawful possession of a weapon cases. Camden County criminal defense attorney Stephen R. Piper fights tirelessly for his clients who have been charged with unlawful possession of a weapon in order to help secure either pre-trial intervention (PTI) or probation under the Graves Act. He investigates and evaluates each case thoroughly to determine whether the client qualifies for PTI or probation, which may be available under the Graves Act if the following are true:
- The accused individual has no prior criminal record.
- The gun was properly licensed and obtained lawfully in another state.
- The gun was unloaded or posed no risk to the public.
South Jersey gun crimes lawyer Stephen Piper also works hard to uncover mitigating factors in each client’s case, which can allow him to negotiate a waiver with the prosecution’s office if PTI or probation are unavailable. A Graves Act waiver can allow the court to reduce the minimum parole eligibility period from three (3) years to as little as one (1) year.
Defending Clients Against Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Charges in Camden County Courts
If PTI or probation are unavailable, and if a Graves Act waiver cannot be obtained, NJ criminal defense attorney Stephen R. Piper is ready to go to court to help his client fight any unlawful possession of a weapon charge. Types of unlawful possession charges in New Jersey include:
- Possession of a machine gun, punishable as a second degree offense under New Jersey Code Section 2C:39-5.
- Possession of a handgun without a permit, punishable as a third degree offense if it is spring loaded or an air gun, or as a second degree offense in other cases.
- Possession of a rifle or shotgun without a firearms purchaser identification card is generally a third degree offense.
- Possession of any firearm in an educational institution without written authorization from the governing body of the school is punishable as a third degree offense, even if the accused individual has a valid permit to carry the weapon outside of the school.
Unlawful possession of a weapon charges in NJ can also be brought against individuals who are not legally eligible to carry weapons, such as individuals who have previously been convicted of certain offenses. These are called “certain persons offenses.”
The most serious gun crime cases in New Jersey involve accusations that the individual possessed an illegal weapon with the intent to use that weapon for an unlawful purpose. The sentence for possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose can be imposed in addition to any sentence imposed in connection with any other charge, whether concurrently or consecutively. In these cases, NJ criminal defense attorney Stephen Piper will fight to prove that the accused individual did not have the required unlawful intent that the prosecution must prove in order to convict. In other cases, Stephen Piper may be able to prove that the gun was discovered in the course of an unlawful search of the accused individual’s home or vehicle. In all cases, he will bring his years of experience as a New Jersey criminal defense attorney to work in exploring every possible defense avenue that may be available.
Contact an Experienced New Jersey Criminal Weapons Charge Attorney Who Will Help You Beat Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Charges in Cherry Hill, NJ
If you have been charged with unlawful possession of a weapon in Camden, Cherry Hill, Gloucester Township, or anywhere else in New Jersey, you need the best legal defense to keep your record clear. The Law Office of Stephen R. Piper has a full team of attorneys, paralegals, and investigative legal staff ready to go to work for you today. Contact our Moorestown office to schedule a free initial consultation today.