Although the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution provides all citizens the right to own guns, this right is not without its limits. In Illinois, gun owners must obtain the proper licensing and, even then, are required to follow strict laws when transporting their firearms. If you face gun charges, the assistance of an experienced Rolling Meadows gun crime lawyer is critical. Gun crime convictions carry severe penalties, including long prison terms, even for those without a significant criminal record. At The Jordan Law Firm, our knowledgeable Rolling Meadows gun crime attorney aggressively defends clients against all types of weapons offenses.
Illinois Gun Laws
Illinois has some of the strictest gun laws in the country. Anyone who owns a gun in Illinois must possess a valid Firearm Owner Identification Card (FOID card). However, Illinois, like most other states, is not an open-carry state. So the only way to legally carry a firearm in public is with a concealed carry permit. If you have a FOID card but don’t have a concealed carry permit, it is legal to carry a gun in your car only if it is broken down to the point where it cannot function, is not immediately accessible, or is unloaded and placed in a carrying case. Even if you do have a concealed carry permit, there are restrictions on where you can carry a gun. Thus, it is important to understand Illinois gun laws to avoid legal trouble. However, if you’ve been arrested for a Rolling Meadows gun crime, you may have a defense to the allegations. A Rolling Meadows gun crime attorney can help you determine the best course of action to protect your freedom.
Unlawful Use of a Weapon
In Illinois, unlawful use of a weapon is the generic name for the offense that covers many gun crimes. For example, unlawful use of a weapon charges can stem from any of the following circumstances:
- Carrying a gun in a place of worship;
- Improperly transporting a gun;
- Possessing a silencer;
- Possessing a gun in a liquor store; and
- Possessing a gun at a sporting event.
The crime of unlawful use of a weapon can be either a misdemeanor or felony. For example, carrying a legally owned gun without a concealed carry permit is a Class A misdemeanor. However, that same offense, if committed on the grounds of a school, is a Class 3 felony.
Illinois gun laws are complex, and it may not be easy to determine how serious the charge against you really is. If you face charges related to the unlawful use of a weapon, a Rolling Meadows gun crime attorney can help you understand the severity of the charges and defend against the allegations.
Felon in Possession of a Gun
While all citizens face some restrictions on gun ownership, those previously convicted of a felony are totally prohibited from owning a gun. This applies whether the felony offense was from Illinois or another state. If found guilty, a felon in possession of a firearm faces a mandatory jail sentence of at least two years. For a first offense, these cases carry a possible sentence of up to ten years in jail.
However, if you were convicted of a “forcible felony,” stalking, certain drug crimes, or another gun offense, the range of possible punishment increases to a minimum of three years and a maximum of 14 years in jail. Similarly, if you are on parole at the time of your arrest, you will face a minimum punishment of three years and a maximum of 14 years.
Notably, the statute prohibiting those with felony convictions from possessing a gun makes clear that “[t]he possession of each firearm or firearm ammunition . . . constitutes a single and separate violation.” Thus, if you have several loaded guns on you at the time of your arrest, the prosecution may ask the judge to sentence you to consecutive terms for each offense.
Contact a Rolling Meadows Gun Crime Lawyer for Immediate Assistance
If you’ve been arrested for a gun crime, don’t hesitate to contact a gun crime lawyer. Gun charges can be very serious, and your freedom may be on the line. Attorney Anisa Jordan is an experienced criminal defense attorney who, prior to founding The Jordan Law Firm, prosecuted gun crimes on behalf of the government. This gives her a unique insight into how the government views gun cases and how to best defend against them.
Our experienced lawyer also handles other types of cases, including:
To learn more and to schedule a free consultation to discuss your case, give The Jordan Law Firm a call today. You can also reach Anisa Jordan through the firm’s online contact form.