Anyone who has been convicted of a felony in the past or in the present is going to lose their ability to bear arms. I'll tell you, our country has gotten more and more vicious when it comes to blocking people from getting guns. There's a huge segment of the population — politically and just regular people who just don't believe anybody should be allowed to have a gun and everybody that's against that — the NRA and those people who want their gun rights — always cite to the Constitution and it's a battle.
California Penal Code 29800
Felon in possession of a firearm in covered under California Penal Code Section 29800. If you're living in Los Angeles, California, they're trying to take your gun rights away. Don't kid yourself. This is a state that really doesn't want people to have guns.
The police a lot of times feel outgunned so to speak, so when it comes to this ex-con with a gun, if you're a felon and you get caught with a gun, you're going to end up with a conviction for a felony — at least they're going to try to get one. A lot of time they're going to try to put you in jail to teach you a lesson.
Really where the dividing line is on this ex-con with a gun issue in Los Angeles, is why do you have the gun? Some of this stuff seems simplistic/common sense type stuff and that's exactly what it is. They want to know why you have the gun. If you've got the gun because you're going to go and commit a robbery for example, then you're going to prison. That's it. So, they're going to be looking at what the angle — why you've got that gun.
Why Do You Have a Firearm?
People come up with various reasons. Maybe they're going to the shooting range and get caught with a gun. A lot of people are going to the shooting range, buying bullets, putting their fingerprints down then here comes the Department of Justice to get you months later.
So, obviously, you shouldn't do that and if you've done that then you're going to have a problem and you can bet your bottom dollar that the prosecutors are going to be asking your defense attorney, why does your client have a gun?
Aside from the fact that he's not allowed to have a gun, what's the reason here? Is he trying to commit some other more serious crime beyond just possessing a gun? Does he just like to have guns? Does he like to fire guns? Is the gun there for their protection? These are the type of issues that I'm grappling with — and I've been doing this for twenty-five years — and have done a lot of ex-con with a gun and felon with a gun and a whole bundh of different names for it.
But what it boils down with is, if you've been convicted of a felony you are never allowed to own, use or possess a gun, weapon or bullet. I've had bullet cases. We call them bullet cases where people just get caught with a single bullet. Why they've got the bullet? I don't know.
But if you've got a bullet, they're going to think you're up to no good, especially if there's any gang activity involved because they figure with gang members, the gun is not too far behind if they've got a bullet or bullets.
Developing a Defense Strategy
The first thing they're going to do is see if they have a good case for you actually possessing the gun, because a lot of times people don't have the gun on them, and then you get into an issue of what's called constructive possession, which means even though you didn't have it in your pocket, did you have access to it?
Did you know it was there? Is that your car where it was found? Is it on your nightstand inside your home? Then they're going to say that you had constructive possession, even though you didn't have it on you at the time, you had access to it and therefore, you possessed it anyway
The second issue is going to be, why did you have the gun? Did you have some sinister purpose or did you just have the gun for your protection. Obviously, you'd be in a much stronger position if you just have the gun for your protection and you're not trying to commit some other type of a crime.
So, if you have an ex-con with a gun, you're in Los Angeles county, you've come to the right place. Pick up the phone. Make the call. Let's meet. We'll talk about it. I do these cases all day. I know how to handle them. I know what it takes to mitigate them. I know what it takes to keep you out of prison.
We're going to have to start marshalling things up for you so that we can put together a mitigation package that gets you out of the criminal justice system as fast as possible.