Penalties for Illegal Possession of a Firearm in Florida
The penalties for illegal possession of a firearm in the state of Florida can vary widely, depending on the exact charges, as well as the circumstances surrounding the offense. Some of the charges you could face related to illegal possession of a firearm in the state of Florida include:
- Unlicensed Carrying of a Concealed Firearm can result in third-degree felony charges. If convicted of a third-degree felony, you could spend as many as five years in prison, you could be assessed a fine as large as $5,000, and/or you could be placed on probation for up to five years.
- Improper Exhibition of a Firearm occurs when a person displays a firearm in a threatening or careless manner. There must have been at least one person present during this display. Even if you have a license to carry a concealed weapon, you could be charged with improper exhibition of a firearm. The penalties for a conviction of this offense are up to a year in jail, and a fine as large as $1,000.
- Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon charges are extremely serious. If you have a felony conviction you are not allowed to possess a firearm. If you violate this dictate, you could be sentenced to up to 15 years in prison, could be placed on probation for up to 15 years, and you could face up to $10,000 in fines.
The nature of the crime, as well as other factors, will determine the penalties you could face for illegal possession of a firearm. In the best-case scenario, the attorney will be able to successfully argue for a charge dismissal, a diversion program, or probation. From a worst-case scenario perspective, you could be sentenced to as many as 15 years in prison. Most prosecutors will attempt to save the state time and money by offering a plea bargain—lowering the charges or the penalties in return for a guilty plea. Only you and your attorney can decide whether you want to accept a plea deal, or you want to take your chances in front of a jury.
Weapons Offense vs. Weapons Enhancement Charges
States like Florida have passed laws regulating the possession of firearms and other weapons, and violating these laws comes with strict penalties. You could either be charged with a weapons offense which means you improperly possessed purchased or used a weapon or firearm, or a weapons enhancement which increases the penalties for an underlying crime or comes with a mandatory minimum prison sentence if the firearm is used to commit a violent crime. It is important that you have an experienced Florida criminal defense attorney by your side from the time you are charged with a gun crime.
Contact Our Jacksonville Criminal Defense Lawyers Today!
Being arrested and charged with a weapons crime can adversely affect your entire life. At Lockett Law, our Jacksonville criminal defense attorneys know how to fight charges of illegal possession of a firearm. We can help protect your rights throughout the legal process and advocate for fairness in sentencing. No matter how serious the charges are against you, we can help. Call us today at (904) 567-9508 or fill out our confidential contact form and someone will call you back immediately!