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Gun Possession Defense Attorney in New York City

Queens Weapons Offenses Lawyer

Manhattan Criminal Lawyer for Clients Facing Charges Related to Firearms, Long Guns, and Other Weapons

The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution guarantees that "the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed." In the years since the Bill of Rights was ratified, the debate has continued over how the Second Amendment should be interpreted by individual states. As a result, there are vast differences in gun laws from one state to another, and those in New York are among the strictest in the entire country.

At The Law Firm of Gregory J. Watford, Esq., PLLC, we recognize that charges associated with the illegal or unlawful possession of a weapon are quite serious in New York State. Most such charges are felonies, and a conviction could lead to consequences that might affect the rest of your life. If you are facing any weapons-related charge, our team has the experience and resources to help you.

Understanding New York Weapons Possession Laws

Compared to other states, New York maintains extremely strict laws regarding the possession of handguns, rifles, shotguns, and other weapons. In New York City, the laws are even more limiting. Under New York State law, handguns, short-barreled or "sawed-off" shotguns, and "assault-style" rifles are considered "firearms." In order to legally possess and carry a firearm, you must obtain a license from the state. The state does not require a license if you wish to own or possess a shotgun or "regular" rifle, which are known as "long guns." However, a license is required for long guns in New York City.

Aside from firearms and long guns, there are many other weapons that are addressed in New York law. For example, it is illegal for you to merely possess:

  • Electronic dart guns;
  • Electronic stun guns;
  • Gravity knives;
  • Switchblade knives;
  • Ballistic knives;
  • Throwing stars;
  • Plastic or metal knuckles;
  • Bludgeons; and
  • Wrist-braced slingshots.

Possession of other weapons, including daggers, stilettos, machetes, and razors, is also illegal if you have intent to use such a weapon "unlawfully against another person."

Classifications of Weapons Offenses in Brooklyn and The Bronx

Article 265 of the New York Penal Law addresses the possession of firearms and other dangerous weapons in the state. Under the law, there are many levels of offenses, ranging from violations up to Class B felonies. For example, unlawful possession of a weapon on school property constitutes a violation, while criminal possession of a weapon in the first degree is Class B felony, punishable by up to 25 years in prison. Weapons charges in New York can also be filed in conjunction with other alleged offenses, such as assault, domestic violence, and robbery.

In New York City, there are additional ordinances that address the unlawful possession of long guns in public. If you are convicted of possessing a loaded long gun in public, you could face up to one year in jail and a fine of up to $1,000.

Mitigation Memorandums

Mr. Watford has represented numerous clients who have been arrested for possessing loaded firearms and charged with felony weapons possession which, in most cases, requires a mandatory prison sentence. Based upon an investigation of the client's background and character history, Mr. Watford has a proven track record of preparing mitigation memorandums which detail the unique circumstances surrounding the client's arrest for weapons possession. The mitigation packages are then submitted to the District Attorneys and Judges and Mr. Watford has conferences with the judges and Supervising District Attorneys. Mr. Watford has been able to successfully resolve numerous cases with non-jail dispositions using this method.

Put Our Experience to Work for You

Attorney Gregory J. Watford is an accomplished defense lawyer with more than 25 years of criminal law experience. In addition, he has over a decade of experience working in various law enforcement capacities. As both a former New York County prosecutor and a criminal investigator, Mr. Watford has a strong working knowledge of the New York criminal justice system, from crime scenes to the courtroom. He understands what is at stake when you are facing weapons possession charges, and he knows the lengths to which district attorneys will go in seeking a conviction. Mr. Watford and the entire team at The Law Firm of Gregory J. Watford, Esq., PLLC are dedicated to helping you protect your rights, your best interests, and your future.

Schedule an Appointment Today

For more information about our firm and how we can help you defend against weapons-related charges in New York City, contact our office. Call 646-580-6675 to schedule a confidential consultation today. We represent clients in Manhattan, Brooklyn, The Bronx, Queens, Mineola, New City, White Plains, Mt. Vernon, New York County, Kings County, Bronx County, Queens County, Nassau County, Rockland County, Westchester County, and the surrounding areas.

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