Richmond Gun Penalties 

There are many penalties a person could face if convicted for a firearms offense. The average gun law penalties are about a year because most of them are going to be Class 1 misdemeanors or Class 6 felonies. The maximum penalty of a Class 1 misdemeanor is one year, the maximum penalty of a Class 6 felony is five years. If an individual is convicted of a gun charge, they are looking at a year in jail.

The biggest thing that influences gun offenses is going to be the prior criminal history of the individual. The individual facts of the case are always going to play a strong factor as well. Any mitigating evidence that can be offered, such as whether the individual was indigent, whether the individual was scared, whether the individual was defending themselves or defending others, will play a role in a gun case.

If you have been charged with a firearms offense, it is best to seek help from a knowledgeable gun attorney as soon as possible. They could explain your rights and legal options. An attorney could help you understand Richmond gun penalties and help you build a defense.

Mandatory Minimum Penalty For Gun-Related Offenses

Richmond gun penalties are written into the Virginia Code, and it explains what the maximum and minimum penalties are. Most gun offenses are going to start as Class 1 misdemeanors.

The minimum felonies are as follows:

  • A Class 6 felony is zero days
  • A Class 5 felony is zero days
  • A Class 4 felony is from 2 to 10 years
  • A Class 3 felony is from 5 to 20 years
  • A Class 2 felony is from 20 years to life
  • A Class 1 felony is life

The difference between a minimum and a mandatory minimum Richmond gun penalty is that with a minimum, a judge has the power to suspend a minimum sentence. For Class 4 felonies, the Virginia Code Class 4 felony will serve not less than two but no more than ten years in jail.

A judge can give them two years in jail and suspend the sentence so that they do not actually have to go to jail, and the individual will not have to serve an active sentence. They will put the individual on probation and do some other things, but the individual will not go behind bars. With a mandatory minimum sentence, the individual has to serve that time unless they receive credit for good behavior.

There are some gun charges that carry with them mandatory minimum sentences, and those are normally going to be Class U felonies. They are undefined, meaning that they do not fall under one of the categories of Class 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, or 6.

Possession of a Firearm

If an individual possesses a firearm and they are a convicted felon, it is a Class 6 felony, meaning that there is no minimum. They can be found guilty and get no days in jail, zero-days, and a zero-dollar fine.

Additionally, if an individual is convicted of possessing a firearm as a convicted felon and they possessed it within ten years of their previous felony conviction, they are looking at a mandatory minimum of 10 years. If they are found guilty, they have to do at least two years. A judge or a jury is going to give them a minimum because they do not have a choice.

With that same charge, if the individual were found guilty of possessing a firearm after being convicted of a violent felony and being previously convicted of possessing a gun, they are looking at a mandatory minimum of five years, which is the max. The lowest an individual can get for the maximum if they are found guilty of possessing a firearm as a convicted violent felon or having been convicted of this offense once before.

The Use of a Firearm Within the Commission of a Felony

Another mandatory minimum is going to be the use of a firearm within the commission of a felony. That only carries mandatory minimums. If the individual has never been convicted before, they have a mandatory minimum of three years. Or if they have been convicted of this before, they are going to get a mandatory minimum of five years.

Maximum Penalty For a Firearms Offense

In most gun-related offenses, the maximum penalty is going to be five years. If it is a brandish or a concealed carry first offense, the maximum is one year. If the individual is shooting at people in their cars or their homes, then the maximum penalty is going to be ten years.

An individual is looking at a five-year maximum on most common gun-related offenses. The maximum fine is $2,500 for misdemeanors, $2,500 for five-year maximum charges, and $100,000 on a 10-year maximum charge.

Additional Penalties

If an individual is found guilty of a felony gun offense, they are going to:

  • Lose their right to possess a firearm
  • Lose their right to vote
  • Lose their right to public assistance
  • Lose their right to public housing
  • Lose their right to reapply for all of those things to even have an opportunity to get them

How a Gun Attorney Could Help

The laws surrounding gun possession are very complex. Whenever an individual is facing any kind of a gun-related offense, they are going to need an experienced attorney who can not only explain the law to them but break the law down into layman’s terms.

When challenging the Commonwealth’s evidence, they should make sure they are thoroughly prepared to protect themselves because they are going to not only lose all of their rights but also spend time in jail.

Let a seasoned gun attorney help your case. Call today to learn more about Richmond gun penalties and your legal options.