Georgia is strict about violent crimes, and especially strict on the use and abuse of weapons. Weapons charges can be filed in relation to a variety of criminal statutes in the Georgia criminal code, and can add substantial time to a prison sentence related to a separate crime. What’s more, if convicted, a weapons charge can further impact your possibilities for parole.
Here’s what you need to know about weapons charges in Georgia.
Laws Restricting Weapons and Firearms
Although Georgia is a relatively gun-friendly state, Georgia law imposes several restrictions on firearms. The most common charges related to firearms include :
- Possessing or carrying a firearm without a license
- Concealed carry of a firearm without a permit
- Giving a minor a firearm without permission from their parent or legal guardian
- Discharging a firearm within 50 yards of a public street
- Discharging a firearm on another person’s property without their consent
- Possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime
- Discharging a firearm while under the influence of alcohol or drugs
Common charges related to weapons of all types (such as guns, knives, or blunt objects) include:
- Carrying weapons in unauthorized locations, for example government buildings
- Altering serial numbers on a firearm or weapon
Georgia criminal code § 16-11-121 prohibits possession of some weapons entirely, under the definition of ‘dangerous weapons.’ These include:
- Rocket launchers
- Recoilless rifles
- Hand grenades
- Machine guns
- Sawed-off rifles and shotguns
Those found in knowing possession of any of these weapons can be charged with a felony, and are subject to a term of five years imprisonment.
Additionally, in the state of Georgia you are not permitted to carry a lethal weapon if you :
- Are a minor under 18 years old
- Are a convicted felon
Weapons During the Commission of Other Crimes
Many weapons charges are filed in relation to other criminal charges. The possession of weapons during the commission of other crimes, for example robbery or assault, is considered an aggravating factor, and can result in substantially higher penalties. These cases are particularly complicated, and the stakes for the accused are extremely high.
If You’ve Been Accused of a Weapon’s Charge in Georgia, You Need Legal Representation
Those convicted of weapons-related offenses in the state of Georgia may find themselves saddled with lengthy prison sentences and exorbitant fines. These costs can have a substantial impact on defendants and their families, and residual effects that last well into the future. In order to mitigate these impacts, it is highly advised that you seek out the counsel of an experienced criminal defense attorney.
The attorneys of Schnipper Law, P.C. can provide you with qualified and vigorous defense against weapons charges. With experience on both the prosecutorial and defense sides of the criminal justice system, Schnipper Law, P.C. is knowledgeable and well equipped to ensure your rights with the strongest legal defense available in the greater Atlanta area.