Felon in Possession of a Weapon

Felon in Possession of a Weapon

Despite Second Amendment guarantees of the right to keep and bear arms, an individual convicted of a felony in Texas loses the right to own or possess a firearm. Five years after a person has completed their sentence for a felony conviction, including parole, the person may possess a firearm at home under Texas law. Violating parole restrictions on possession of a firearm by a convicted felon may lead to second or third-degree felony charges.

A loss of the right to possess a firearm is just one of the restrictions on the liberties of a Texan who has been convicted of a felony. 

If you have a criminal history and have been charged with possession of a firearm by a felon in Austin or surrounding areas, you need the assistance of a skilled felony defense attorney. The experienced criminal defense attorneys at Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., have the knowledge, resources, and determination necessary to defend your rights against firearm charges. Call at (512) 476-4873 or fill out our contact form today for a confidential case evaluation. We will discuss your legal options and how we can help you pursue the most favorable outcome of your case.

Why Hiring an Attorney Is Essential After a Felon in Criminal Possession of a Weapon Charge

Because such a charge can lead to more than a decade in prison, it’s crucial to obtain the most experienced criminal defense attorney available. Your freedom and future are at stake. Texas prosecutors have professional obligations and motivation to pursue guilty verdicts and active sentences when they bring felony charges forward. 

As a felon under arrest, you should decline to answer police questions and ask to be allowed to contact a defense attorney. In the Austin, Texas, area, you should call our legal law firm at (512) 476-4873

Benefits of Choosing Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C. for Your Defense in a Felony Weapons Possession Case

If you have been charged as a felon in illegal possession of a weapon in Texas, the defense attorneys of Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., will do everything legally possible to have the charges dropped or, if possible, persuade the court to reduce the felony charge to a misdemeanor. When evidence allows, we will challenge the charge and the case against you. 

The Austin law firm of Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., has fought for our clients and obtained favorable results for more than 50 years. Our objective is always to obtain the best possible outcome available under Texas criminal law for each of our clients.

We first look for a valid reason to have charges dropped or reduced. Under Texas Penal Code 46.04, a felon may not have a firearm or another weapon for five years after completing their sentence or until they have been released from community supervision, parole, or mandatory supervision, whichever is later. 

A person convicted of misdemeanors involving family violence is also prohibited from possessing a firearm for five years or the completion of community supervision, parole, or mandatory supervision, though they are not a felon.

After five years have passed since the completion of a prison sentence, including parole, a person convicted of a felony may possess a firearm on the premises where they live, according to Texas law. They may apply to the Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles for the restoration of firearm rights

However, federal law prohibiting criminal possession of a weapon by a felon does not make an exception for possessing a firearm at home after a certain period of time. This contradiction in federal and state laws can create serious legal problems for people previously convicted of felonies. It is important to talk to a knowledgeable criminal defense attorney if you find yourself in this situation.

How a Skilled Felon Lawyer Can Benefit Your Case

If the evidence does not clearly show a violation of the law, our attorneys will challenge your conviction at every turn. Because of our many years as attorneys in Travis County courts, prosecutors and judges will hear us out when we proclaim that charges against our client are unjust.

When a trial is necessary, the burden is on the prosecutors to prove your guilt of a firearms possession offense beyond a reasonable doubt. No one should be convicted unless the government can prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt. Our criminal defense attorneys will question every aspect of the prosecution’s case and counter it with a solid defense. If we receive a guilty verdict, we will begin promptly to review trial records and identify judicial errors that support an appeal and could lead to overturning the verdict. We will explore all opportunities for an appeal.

Regardless of your background, you have the right to a robust legal defense when charged with a crime in Austin, Texas. The defense attorney you select when facing serious charges can make all the difference in the outcome. Our felony defense lawyers have the experience, resources, and knowledge of Travis County courts necessary to defend your rights and seek the best possible outcome for you. 

How Much Does a Lawyer Charge for This Type of Defense?

Every criminal case has aspects that make it unique. Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C. prides itself on offering personalized legal representation to people who seek our help. We can review the specific weapon possession charges you are facing during a free case review and discuss our fee structure for providing legal representation. 

What Are the Penalties for Possession of a Firearm by a Felon?

Possessing a weapon while prohibited from doing so due to a felony conviction in Texas is a third-degree felony punishable by 2 to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000. An offender whose previous felony conviction was for a felony other than a state jail felony will be deemed a habitual felony offender and face a second-degree felony charge. If convicted of this charge, the punishment is 2 to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $10,000.

No one should face the Texas Justice System and the potential consequences of being unlawfully in possession of a firearm after a felony conviction in Texas without qualified legal representation. 

Potential Defenses to Felon in Possession of a Weapon Charges

We will investigate the charges against you and work to develop a solid defense for you. Among the potential defenses to charges of being a felon in unlawful possession of a firearm are the following:

  • The defendant was not knowingly in possession of the firearm or another weapon. In a group of people, another individual may have had actual knowledge and possession of the weapon attributed to the defendant. In many cases, a spouse or roommate has brought a gun into the home unaware of or with no regard for gun possession prohibitions that apply to people with a felony conviction.
  • The evidence of the defendant’s actual possession of the firearm or weapon is not clear and convincing. 
  • Possession of the firearm or weapon occurred only in a moment of self-defense or as the defendant was taking it from an individual committing or attempting a crime.
  • The weapon or firearm was discovered and/or taken by law enforcement during an illegal search and seizure.
  • The Texas Board of Pardons and Paroles, or a gubernatorial pardon, had previously restored the defendant’s firearm rights.

Most criminal charges are dropped or reduced and resolved through plea bargains without a trial because of a lack of solid evidence or because of technical problems with the case. But to get a charge or sentence reduced in Texas, you need an experienced, local defense attorney who understands the legal requirements the prosecution must meet and whose relationships with local prosecutors ensure full consideration of all evidence that supports your exoneration.

Consult an Experienced Austin Criminal Possession of a Weapon Defense Lawyer Today

If you have been charged as a felon in unlawful possession of a firearm in Texas or know that such charges are pending, you should engage experienced legal counsel as soon as possible. A felony defense attorney can investigate the charges and create a robust strategy to defend you from conviction for this crime and potentially get charges against you reduced or dismissed. 

Minton, Bassett, Flores & Carsey, P.C., has successfully fought for clients’ rights and freedom in Texas since 1963. When you hire an experienced and knowledgeable Austin felony defense attorney from our firm to defend you against charges of being a felon in possession of a firearm or similar weapon, you will receive quality representation and protection throughout the legal process.

If you face weapons charges as a felon in Texas, contact us now for a confidential legal consultation.