Gun Crime Lawyer in Washington, D.C.
Defending Against Gun Crime Charges in Maryland & Washington, D.C.
Gun crimes are taken very seriously in Washington, DC. The District has some of the harshest gun laws in the country. If you are charged with a gun crime, you should seek representation from an attorney seasoned in managing these cases. At Wagner PLLC, our gun crime defense lawyers understand how these cases are prosecuted and have a proven track record of success. We are ready to use this experience to help you with your case.
What Are the Penalties for Gun Crimes in DC?
In Washington, DC, the penalties for gun crimes can be severe, reflecting the city's strict gun laws. The specific consequences of a firearm offense conviction can vary depending on the circumstances of your case. For example, if a firearm is used in the commission of a crime of violence, the penalties can escalate significantly, potentially involving decades of prison time.
Examples of gun crime charges can include:
- Unlawful possession of a firearm
- Carrying a pistol without a license
- Possession of an unregistered firearm or ammunition
- Assault with a dangerous weapon
- Possession of a firearm during a crime of violence
- Unlawful discharge of a firearm
Remember, if you are convicted of a gun crime in DC, you will face some of the harshest penalties in the country. Prosecutors in Maryland are just as aggressive in pursuing gun crime charges. Even if you have a gun legally in your possession, you can still be charged with a crime if you do not follow the proper gun laws.
Do I Need a Lawyer For Gun Crime Charges?
Regardless of whether you're facing misdemeanor or felony charges, it's crucial to consult an attorney if you've been accused of a gun crime. Because the consequences of a conviction can be far-reaching and devastating, affecting personal relationships, employment prospects, and your overall future, much is at stake. Furthermore, understanding complex and stringent gun laws can be overwhelming, so it's advisable to have a knowledgeable attorney who can navigate the legal system on your behalf.
Common factors that can affect how someone is charged include:
- The individual's prior criminal record
- The type and amount of the weapons involved
- Whether the firearm was used in the commission of another crime
- The presence of children or other vulnerable individuals during the incident
- Whether the firearm was discharged, and if so, the aftermath
Defenses Against Gun Crime Charges
While every case is unique, some potential defenses that could be considered include the following:
- Illegal Search and Seizure: If law enforcement obtained evidence, including the firearm, through an illegal search or seizure, we may challenge the admissibility of that evidence in court.
- Lack of Possession: If you did not have physical possession of the firearm, it may be possible to argue that you were not in control of the weapon and, therefore, should not be held responsible for its possession.
- Unlawful Arrest: If your arrest was conducted without proper legal justification, we may challenge the validity of the arrest and any evidence gathered as a result.
- Self-Defense: Depending on the circumstances, if you used the firearm in self-defense, you may be able to argue that your actions were justified.
- Mistaken Identity: If there is doubt about whether you were the person in possession of the firearm, you may be able to argue mistaken identity.
- Procedural Errors: We may identify errors in the legal process, such as violations of your rights during questioning, failure to provide Miranda warnings, or other procedural mistakes.
- Invalid Firearm Charge: In some cases, the charge itself may be based on a misunderstanding or a misidentification of the type of firearm involved. We may challenge the accuracy of the charge.
- Second Amendment Rights: Depending on the circumstances, we may argue that your Second Amendment rights were violated, especially if the firearm possession was legal under certain conditions.
What to Do If You Are Arrested on Gun Crime Charges
If you are arrested on gun crime charges, it is critical that you act quickly. First and foremost, exercise your right to remain silent; anything you say may be used against you in court. Avoid the temptation to explain or defend yourself to law enforcement without legal representation present. Remember, your actions and words in these initial moments can significantly impact your case's outcome.
As soon as possible, reach out to a lawyer experienced in gun crime defense, like ours. At Wagner PLLC, we strongly recommend immediate legal consultation following your arrest, as this can be critical to protecting your rights and formulating a strong defense strategy. Generally speaking, the sooner you involve a lawyer, the better.
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Contact Our Gun Crime Attorney in Washington, D.C. Today
At Wagner PLLC, we have the skills and resources to analyze your case thoroughly. We are ready to discuss all the options available to you, including challenging the prosecution's evidence, negotiating plea agreements, or representing you at trial if necessary. We understand that the outcome of your case will dramatically impact your future, and we have the dedication and work ethic to advocate for you.