It's illegal to negligently discharge a BB gun. A lot of times where I'm seeing this crime happen is where people are out on the road and they think it's funny to shoot a BB gun at different people or businesses and break windows out.
You've heard that old saying, don't fire that BB gun, you could put somebody's eye out. The bottom line is, when it comes to BB guns, pellet guns or anything that can shoot things and potentially injure the public, the police and prosecutors are going to take these cases very seriously.
It's not just the fact that you're firing a BB gun and people could get injured or some property could get damages, but also, a lot of times these BB and pellet guns are being mistaken for real guns and you're scaring people to death.
Factors of Injury or Vandalism
really what the prosecutors and judges hate when it comes to these negligent discharge of a BB gun cases. If you happen to hit somebody or injure somebody in any type of a serious way – or even cause vandalism – the prosecutors will prosecute you for it.
They'll put you on probation. They'll find you and in bad cases, they'll put you in jail for a period of time.
So, if you're being charged with negligent discharge of a BB gun, they're using Penal Code Section 246.3, there are all sorts of things that can be done, again, depending on the circumstances.
Sometimes, the people are so mad that you fired a gun at them and that you scared them to death, that they put up some big trumped-up story as to exactly what happened, and of course, the police just take their version of it and don't get your account of events, so nobody knows what happened from your point of view.
That's where your criminal defense attorney comes in – to give the other side of the story – to tell your version to the judge and prosecutors so that you can be treated fairly. Otherwise, it just becomes a rush to judgment in these cases where people are firing things that people think are real guns when it's actually only a BB gun.
Reviewing Best Defense Strategy
So, if you have one of these cases, what I encourage you to do is give me a call and set up an appointment. We'll sit down and go over everything. It will all be confidential in the privacy of my office and we'll really get together the strategy as to what we're going to do.
Not all cases are the same. You can't just take some cookie-cutter approach and do the same thing every time. Some cases we're going to want to try to get the case dismissed because you really didn't do anything wrong and they don't have the evidence to prove the case.
Other cases, you did something wrong, but we want to do damage control to get you a lesser charge that doesn't have this negligent discharge of any type of a weapon even if it's a BB gun.
In other cases, we may even want to try to get some sort of a diversion program to set things up so your record can be clean in the end. You can get the case dismissed. You can move on with your life, stay free of jail and stay free of the stigma that comes along with a charge of negligently discharging any type of a gun, even if it's a BB gun.
So, if you've got one of these cases, let's sit down and go over everything and let's design a plan that makes sense for you, your life, your circumstances, your family, your job, your future and your freedom.
Defenses To Negligent Discharge Of A BB Gun Under PC 246.3
One obvious defense is that you're not the one who fired the gun. They don't have your fingerprints on the gun. They don't have an eyewitness or video indicating that you fired any sort of a weapon at anybody. That's an obvious defense and it depends on the facts and circumstances surrounding the case. We sit down and talk about it and see if you can assert that defense.
Another defense is that you weren't intentionally trying to hit anybody with a BB gun. Sometimes people are target-practicing and maybe a stray BB or pellet gets loose, and you really weren't trying to do anything wrong and it doesn't rise to the level of negligence.
But, you're really going to have to show that you were taking the right precautions when it came to firing the weapon because if you're just discharging it in a negligent manner, that's the whole point. That's the crime. We're trying to protect the public. That's why they have this particular crime on the books.
So, if you've got one of these cases it's crucial that you get in front of the criminal defense attorney that has experience, knows how to deal with these cases and knows how to make sure that you end up with the best possible resolution.