Despite the Second Amendment right to carry and bear arms, there are many New Jersey state laws and federal laws that restrict and regulate that right. A person’s failure to understand and appreciate the laws and restrictions regarding their right to have a gun, pistol, shotgun, or other firearm in the state of New Jersey can result in serious criminal charges. Violations of New Jersey’s weapons laws can result in your arrest and misdemeanor or criminal charges. These charges can jeopardize your freedom, your ability to own or carry a weapon, and result in a myriad of other negative consequences.
With more than 45 years of combined experience, the aggressive and strategic criminal defense attorneys of the Law Offices of John J. Zarych can fight to defend your rights. Our legal team will take pro-active steps to address the allegations you face and will fight to protect your name, freedom, and reputation.
What Are Common New Jersey Weapons Charges?
In light of New Jersey’s high population density and proximity to major urban centers, legislators in New Jersey regularly take a tough stance against firearms and other weapons. While the state legislators draft and pass gun control laws with good intentions, the laws can have uneven and, quite frankly, unfair impacts in the real world. The Law Offices of John J. Zarych are dedicated to protecting well-meaning individuals from the misapplication of laws including N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5 regarding the unlawful possession of a weapon.
Under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5 a number of firearms are made illegal unless the possessor hold a license to possess the weapon. Machine guns are illegal to possess without license under this statute. N.J.S.A. 2C:58-5 provides that a machine gun includes both traditional machine guns and assault firearms and sets forth the procedures for licensing and the conditions necessary to be granted a license. N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5 also prohibits the possession of a handgun, antique handgun, spring guns, air guns, rifles, shotguns and other weapons “not manifestly appropriate for such lawful uses” without a license. Violation of New Jersey’s gun licensing laws can result in criminal penalties of the second, third, or fourth degree.
Weapons that are used or possessed while in the commission of certain crimes and drug crimes can also lead to additional criminal charges and enhanced criminal consequences. Under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1a, one who possesses a firearm while committing a drug crime, conspiring to commit a drug crime, or attempting to commit a drug crime can face additional charges. If the discovery of the possession of the prohibited weapon came about as part of a vehicle stop, the presumptions of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-2 will apply. In these circumstances it is presumed that the weapon, destructive device, or firearm belongs to the sole occupant of the vehicle or, in the case of multiple occupants, all of the vehicle’s occupants jointly except when:
the firearm is on the person of one of the vehicle occupants.
it is stored in a secure location in the vehicle and the vehicle is not stolen it is presumed to belong to the individual with the authority to operate or control the vehicle.
The experienced criminal defense attorneys of the Law Offices of John J. Zarych can provide a clear, concise explanation of the law. They can then address your criminal concerns strategically and aggressively.
Are there Weapons Prohibited from Ownership in NJ?
There are a number of weapons that are illegal to simply possess without a valid reason. Other weapons are illegal to have regardless of your intention or purposes. NJSA 2C:39-3 lists weapons and devices that are prohibited in Cape May and throughout all of New Jersey. These weapons include:
Metal or brass knuckles
Hollow point, hollow nose, dum-dum bullets or any other armor-piercing ammunition
However, there may be exceptions to New Jersey’s gun and weapons laws that may apply to you. If you are facing weapons charges for possessing a prohibited or unlicensed weapon in New Jersey, our experienced criminal defense lawyers work strategically to reduce or eliminate the charges you face. For instance, in extraordinary cases, NJSA 2C:43-6.2 may provide a pathway to a reduced sentence in the form of probation.
Our Attorneys’ Gun and Weapons Charges Experience in Cape May
With more than 45 years of combined experience, you can rely on the criminal defense attorneys of the Law Offices of John J. Zarych. To schedule a free consultation at our Cape May, Wildwood, Atlantic City, or Northfield law offices call (609) 616-4956 or contact us online today.