Lexington Gun Lawyer 

South Carolina takes gun crimes very seriously. While the state makes it very easy to obtain a firearm, and even to carry them in public with a concealed weapons license, any crime that is committed while using a gun is punished very harshly.

In addition, there are laws that limit where a person may lawfully take their firearm and how they must be safely used. A Lexington gun lawyer is available to help people who have been are facing charges of offenses that involve firearms. A distinguished criminal attorney will work to protect those accused.

Prohibited Firearm Usage

South Carolina is not an open carry state. This means that all people who wish to carry a weapon in public must obtain a CWP license to do so.

Normally, a citizen may apply for a permit to carry a concealed weapon in public and this license is presumed to be granted to all who apply.  

They must be at least 21 years old, show identification, submit fingerprints and certify that they have received appropriate training. 

Concealed Weapon Carry Limits

South Carolina Code 23-31-215 (M) limits where a person may carry a concealed weapon. This law lists several locations where a weapon can never be taken. These include: 

  • A home of another person who does not give express permission 
  • Businesses that post a clear sign prohibiting weapons 
  • Churches unless express permission is given 
  • Daycares 
  • Restaurants that serve alcohol unless the carrier is not drinking 
  • Schools

Lexington gun lawyers know that a violation of this statute is considered a misdemeanor level offense with potential penalties of imprisonment for up to one year and a fine of up to $1,000. The defendant’s license to carry will be revoked for five years. 

Gun Restricted Groups

While South Carolina law assumes that a person can own a firearm, there are certain people who forfeit this right. People who are never allowed to possess handguns are those who have been convicted of felonies, violent crimes, and domestic violence at least five years after a conviction. If someone was being adjudicated to be considered an illegal alien or dishonorably discharged from the military, they are also not allowed to carry firearms.

Suspended Rights

There are also groups of people who have had their rights suspended. These are people currently the subject of protective orders, awaiting trial for a felony, and people who are fugitives from justice.  

For most of these charges, the crime is treated as a felony that can result in jail terms of up to five years and stiff fines. Of course, a conviction will label the defendant as a felon and forever eliminate their rights to handgun possession. 

Firearms Involved in Criminal Offenses

Even people who are legal owners of firearms may face harsh legal trouble if they are accused of using a gun in the commission of another crime. For example, take a situation where a licensed conceal carry person is walking down the street when they are yelled at by a passerby.  

If the carrying person yells back at their abuser and pushes them, this will likely be charged as assault and battery, third-degree. However, if the carrier takes their gun out of the holster and points it at the abuser, this will make it a much more serious allegation, such as a pointing and presenting a firearm or assault and battery, first-degree.  

There are enhanced penalties for anyone convicted of a crime while holding a gun. Therefore, it is important to speak with a Lexington gun lawyer. This statute states that there is a mandatory minimum of a five-year prison term for any conviction. This is in addition to any punishments meted out for the underlying offense. 

Help from a Lexington Gun Lawyer

Any allegation of improper gun use is a very serious matter with harsh consequences. Even people who unknowingly violate laws concerning where it is permitted to carry a weapon face potential imprisonment, heavy fines, a criminal record, and the loss of the right to carry.  

Those who never had the right to own in the first place could be labeled as a felon forever forfeiting this right. Those who are accused of using a firearm in the commission of a crime may be subjected to mandatory prison terms.  A Lexington gun lawyer understands the grave implications of these accusations. It is imperative to fight the charges at every turn.  

From the bond hearing, to the pre-trial hearings, to a final trial, important matters are discussed at every stage of the proceedings. Work with an attorney who will stand up for you and challenge the State’s accusations, contact a Lexington gun attorney today.