Columbia Gun Penalties

Because the level of danger is heightened when a gun is involved, police treat gun charges seriously. Based on recent events with the mass shootings around the country, it is evident that police and prosecutors are on heightened alert when guns are involved in any type of case. With that being said, Columbia gun penalties can carry heavy punishment and you may want to consider a dedicated gun lawyer for help.

Penalties for Gun Offenses in Columbia

In South Carolina, unlawful carrying of a pistol charge is a misdemeanor that carries up to a year in prison. Possession of a stolen pistol is a felony that can carry up to five years in prison. It is the same for a possession with a weapon during the commission of a violent crime, which happens in any case where a weapon is used. That would mean armed robberies, burglaries, and even assault and battery if it reaches a certain threshold and a weapon was involved, if the assault and battery was of a high and aggravated nature. It can be an up to five year felony.

Pointing and presenting a firearm is also a felony that goes up to five years in jail, but discharging a firearm is a felony that carries up to 10 years in prison. It has a more significant penalty. It might range anywhere from a one year misdemeanor for the unlawful carrying of a pistol, to zero to five years for the other three. The highest is the discharging of a firearm into a dwelling, which is up to 10 years. Columbia gun penalties hold serious consequences.

Long-Term Repercussions of Conviction

Any felony conviction, in short, is a modern-day scarlet letter in the sense that it would prevent a person from getting the best jobs possible and could even keep one from certain housing options and receiving student loans. It can be difficult, and in some cases, impossible, to expunge a felony.

Columbia gun penalties are serious and a felony is something one does not want to have on their record in today’s society. The long-term repercussions are very severe if one has a felony on their record.

How Do Prosecutors Treat Gun Offenses in Columbia?

Prosecutors treat gun offenses in Columbia very seriously. It is rare for prosecutors to dismiss gun charges without securing some type of other conviction. Possession with a weapon during the commission of a violent crime is often dismissed as part of plea negotiations if an individual has a much more serious felony charge and they have a possession of a weapon charge. It is not uncommon for the prosecutor to dismiss that charge if that person is pleading to much more jail time on a more serious charge. As a general rule, prosecutors are very reluctant to dismiss if it is just a weapons charge.

Choosing a Columbia Gun Lawyer

An experienced, trained, and aggressive lawyer will know whether to challenge any search and seizure issues, whether any constitutional rights were violated, and whether any legal defenses could be raised to get the charges minimized or dismissed altogether. Having an attorney who is not only aggressive but experienced is important, because it could mean the difference in having a felony on one’s record or not.

While there are no guarantees in any legal proceeding, if you attempt to represent yourself, you are not putting themselves in the best position possible. It is likely that you do not have legal training, legal experience in the courtroom, and experience dealing with the police and prosecutors on a personal basis. You may be opening yourself up to the maximum weight of any Columbia gun penalties.