Facing a Gun Charge in Monmouth County?

Caught with a Gun in New Jersey?

New Jersey takes an extremely tough stance when it comes to those caught possessing a firearm who have not previously obtained the necessary permits. By permits, we mean, those who have obtained a New Jersey Firearms ID Card prior to possessing the weapon. In other words, out of state permits and even out of state permits to carry are irrelevant when it comes to New Jersey law. Anyone who is caught possessing a firearm, whether it be a handgun, rifle, shotgun, machine gun or even a BB-Gun will be charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, in violation of NJSA 2C:39-5. It is important to note here that this is a possessory offense, meaning that the simple possession alone is what makes the act illegal. Therefore, it does not have to be alleged that the individual brandished the weapon, used the weapon in the commission of an offense (i.e. robbery) or any other unlawful purpose for that matter. So, the individual who lawfully purchased a handgun in another State and possess a permit to carry from that State, who is discovered to be in possession of the weapon during a routine traffic stop in New Jersey, could and more likely than not, depending on how the gun is being transported, would be charged with unlawful possession of a weapon. That person is facing the exact same penalties as the individual who is caught possessing an illegal gun during the commission of a crime. As you will see below, unless the weapon is considered a BB-Gun, unlawful possession of a weapon is going to fall under the Graves Act, which in essence requires not only mandatory incarceration but requires that the incarceration be subject to a mandatory parole ineligibility period as well.

Need Consultation with Attorney in Monmouth County About Gun Case

If you have unfortunately found yourself in this situation, we strongly urge that you contact an experienced criminal defense attorney, one who has experience dealing with this specific offense, as soon as possible. Depending on the facts, an experienced gun possession defense attorney can help obtain what is known as a Graves Act Waiver, which could potentially eliminate the mandatory prison term and even possibly the felony conviction as well. Our office has obtained numerous Graves Act Waivers over the years and have succeed in getting numerous clients entry in the Pretrial Intervention Program as well. Regardless of the circumstances surrounding the incident, if you have been caught possessing a gun in Monmouth County or elsewhere in New Jersey, our office can help. To schedule a free initial consultation today, please call our office at 732.858.6959 or you can contact us online.

What to Know about Gun Possession Charges in Freehold, New Jersey

The governing statute in New Jersey for those caught possessing a firearm is NJSA 2C:39-5. The legislature chose to breakdown this statute into four major subsections. The type of firearm in question is what dictates what subsection the individual will be charged under. Anyone caught possessing a Machine Gun, will be charged under NJSA 2C:39-5a; anyone caught possessing a handgun, whether it be a BB-Gun, handgun or Spring Gun, will be charged under NJSA 2C:39-5b and anyone caught possessing a rifle, including a shotgun, will be charged under NJSA 2C:39-5c. Unless the individual is alleged to have been in possession of a BB-Gun or a Spring Gun, they will be subject to the Graves Act. The firearm in question also dictates the degree and as a result, the potential penalties, that the individual faces if convicted. Here is a quick breakdown of the potential penalties:

Machine Guns & Handguns Offense:

  • 2nd Degree Felony Offense
    • 5 to 10 Years in State Prison & a fine in up $150,000
    • Pursuant to the Graves Act, the individual must be sentenced to at least 5 years in State Prison with a forty-two month parole ineligibility period.

Rifles & Shotguns Charges

  • 3rd Degree Felony Offense
    • 3 to 5 Years in State Prison & a fine in up $15,000
    • Pursuant to the Graves Act, the individual must be sentenced to at least 5 years in State Prison with a forty-two month parole ineligibility period.

What Happens if Graves Act Waiver is Granted in NJ?

If a Graves Act Waiver is obtained, the individual could potential obtain one of the following benefits:

  • Reduction in the mandatory minimum prison sentence from 5 years with a 42 month parole ineligibility period to 3 years with a 12 month parole ineligibility period; or
  • Probation, conditioned upon up to 364 days in the County Jail; or
  • Straight Probation; or
  • Pretrial Intervention Program.

Here is a link to an article about recent Graves Act wavier that we obtained for one of our clients that was charge with unlawful possession of a gun in Monmouth County. State v. C.W. 2018

Looking for Handgun Possession Defense Attorney in Freehold NJ

Obtaining a Graves Act waiver is a very complicated process but as you can see, the benefits can be rather significant. If you or a loved one has been charged with a gun offense in Monmouth County or elsewhere in New Jersey, the Keith Oliver Criminal Law can help. Our firm is a Monmouth County based criminal defense firm, comprised of attorneys who have dedicated their entire careers to defending those accused of serious crimes, like unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of a weapon for unlawful purposescertain persons as well as possession of a weapon during the commission of a drug offense. If you would like to speak to one of our Monmouth County criminal defense attorneys today, please contact us directly at 732.858.6959. As always, our initial consultations are free of costs, so if  you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us.