Orlando Gun & Weapon Crime Lawyer
Peace officers are very aggressive in this area. Memories of mass shootings in Florida over recent years, such as the Pulse Nightclub and Parkland shootings, are still fresh in many peoples’ minds. As a result, illegal gun possession is something of a political hot button issue in many places. Furthermore, many law enforcement officers believe these cases are easy to prove in court. So, they file lots of them in order to pad their arrest and conviction statistical records.
The experienced Orlando gun & weapon crime lawyers at Joshi Law Firm, PA routinely handle these matters throughout central Florida. As a result, we know all the relevant procedural court rules. That includes the unwritten requirements. So, we are well-positioned to obtain the best possible results under the circumstances.
Permissible Carry in Florida
The Constitution gives individuals the right to keep (own) and bear (carry) firearms. States have the power to pass reasonable time, place, manner, and other restrictions on this right. In general, Florida lightly regulates carrying firearms and seldom regulates owning them.
As a preliminary matter, obtaining a Carrying a Concealed Weapons license is not too difficult in Florida. According to state law, if applicants meet the minimum qualifications, the local law enforcement office shall issue a permit. Other states are may-issue states. In other words, the state retains a veto power over CCW licenses.
CCW holders may generally carry weapons on their person and in their vehicle. They may also possess weapons in most state parks. They need not inform officers that they are carrying guns if they are searched. Furthermore, those “no weapons allowed” signs which you see from time to time are generally unenforceable in Florida.
To defend these charges, our Orlando guns & weapons offense lawyers often challenge the legality of the stop. Police officers must have reasonable suspicion to detain individuals. Reasonable suspicion that the defendant is carrying a weapon isn’t too hard to establish. Reasonable suspicion that the defendant possessed a weapon illegally, however, is a different matter.
Furthermore, when these cases go to court, they have a number of moving parts. Prosecutors must establish all the elements of possession beyond a reasonable doubt.
- Proximity: This issue often comes up in vehicle and real property possession matters. Usually, the contraband must be in the passenger area of a vehicle. Sometimes, the trunk counts as well. In real property cases, a gun in the same room usually suffices.
- Knowledge: The defendant must know that an illegal firearm was present. Knowing that there’s “something illegal” in the closet does not count. Knowledge is especially hard to prove if the defendant was a guest in the home or didn’t know other people in the car very well.
- Control: If the gun was in a locked container, like a glove box or safe, only the person with the key or combination can legally possess it.
These issues are especially common in vehicle possession matters. Frequently, if officers find an illegal gun in a car, they arrest everyone in the car for possession.
Connect with a Diligent Orange County Lawyer
Contraband possession charges are often difficult to prove in court. For a free consultation with an experienced guns & weapons defense lawyer in Orlando, contact the Joshi Law Firm, PA. Convenient payment plans are available.