Despite the Second Amendment giving citizens the right to bear arms, Illinois law imposes significant restrictions on gun ownership. Those who run afoul of these laws face serious penalties, even for a first-time offense. If you face allegations of illegally possessing a gun, you need a Waukegan gun crime attorney who is ready to stand up for your rights. At The Jordan Law Firm, our lawyer Anisa Jordan aggressively represents clients charged with all types of firearms offenses. As a former prosecutor with experience handling hundreds of cases, she knows what it takes to mount a successful defense in even the toughest circumstances.
What Constitutes Illegal Possession of a Gun in Illinois?
Anyone who owns a gun must obtain a Firearm Owner’s Identification Card (FOID), regardless of whether the gun is a handgun, rifle, or shotgun. Those with a FOID can legally keep the weapon in their home. To transport a gun, a FOID cardholder must either disassemble the weapon, place it outside their immediate reach, or remove all ammunition and place the weapon in a carrying case. FOID card holders cannot legally carry a concealed weapon.
To carry a concealed weapon, you must obtain a Concealed Carry Permit (CCL). However, even with a CCL, there are restrictions on where you can bring a weapon. For example, carrying a gun into a liquor store or any event requiring an admission fee is illegal. It is also against the law to concealed-carry while wearing clothing or a mask that conceals your identity.
Illinois gun laws are complex, making it possible to break the law without even knowing it. If the police arrested you for illegally possessing a gun, you should contact a Waukegan gun crime defense lawyer promptly.
Punishments for Waukegan Gun Crimes
The punishments for Waukegan weapons offenses range in severity, depending largely on the circumstances surrounding your arrest. For example, if your FOID expired or you are otherwise eligible to possess a firearm, you may face misdemeanor charges. However, if the government revoked your FOID card or you prohibited you from obtaining one, you will face a Class 3 felony. Additionally, it is a Class 2 felony to knowingly provide false information in an application for a FOID card.
Defenses to Waukegan Gun Charges
There are various defenses to gun crimes, and just because the prosecution brings charges against you does not mean that you will be found guilty. One of the most common defenses is a pre-trial motion to suppress evidence. If a judge grants a motion to suppress, the evidence at issue—in most cases, the gun or your statement to police—can’t be used at trial. More often than not, the prosecution cannot continue with the case at this point and will withdraw.
Motion to Suppress
Motions to suppress are based on the constitutionality of the circumstances leading to the officers’ discovery of the gun. Law enforcement must respect your rights, whether they are investigating a traffic violation, drug offense, or any other crime. If an officer conducts a search or seizure without reasonable suspicion or probable cause, any evidence they recover may be suppressed.
Motions to suppress involving search and seizure law are extraordinarily complex and heavily depend on the facts of each case. A skilled Waukegan gun charge defense attorney can help you keep harmful and illegally obtained evidence out of trial.
Another common defense in Waukegan gun crimes involves challenging the prosecution’s claim that you exercised control over the firearm. This is especially effective when your arrest occurred in a vehicle and the weapon was not within your immediate reach. Also, if there were other people in the car at the time, it may be harder for the prosecutor to prove that the gun was yours or that you knew of its presence.
Contact The Jordan Law Firm for Immediate Assistance
If you face gun charges, you can bet that the prosecution will take the case seriously—and so should you. However, just because you were arrested does not mean that you will be found guilty. Attorney Anisa Jordan is an experienced Waukegan criminal defense legal practitioner committed to upholding her clients’ rights in the face of aggressive police and prosecutors.
Our experienced lawyer also handles other types of cases, including:
- Criminal Defense
- DUI Defense
- Traffic Violations
- DCFS Appeals
- Record Expungement & Sealing
- Assault & Battery
- Driver’s License Suspension and Revocation
- Identity Theft Defense
- Drug Crimes
As a former prosecutor, Attorney Jordan knows how the other side sees your case and can anticipate their strategy. With the lawyer at The Jordan Law Firm on your side, you can rest easy knowing that you are in capable hands. To learn more and to schedule a free consultation, contact Attorney Jordan by phone or through the firm’s online contact form.