Illinois has strict gun laws, and individuals who violate these laws can face serious consequences. After a citation, you may feel stressed, confused, and worried about the outcome of your case. Adequate representation may help curb your fears. If you are facing weapons charges in Illinois, it is essential to understand the laws surrounding firearms and how a criminal defense attorney can help you.
The following blog details Illinois weapons laws, the common citations found within the state, and the common penalties for such charges.
To purchase or possess a firearm in Illinois, you must have a valid Firearm Owners Identification (FOID) card. The Illinois State Police issued the FOID card and performed a required background check.
Illinois law also prohibits specific individuals from possessing firearms, including convicted felons, individuals with certain mental health conditions, and minors. Additionally, certain guns, such as assault weapons and large-capacity magazines, are banned in Illinois. A criminal defense attorney can help.
1) Unlawful Use of a Weapon
Unlawful use of a weapon (UUW) is another common gun charge in Illinois. Under Illinois law, it is illegal for specific individuals to possess firearms, including convicted felons, individuals with certain mental health conditions, and minors.
The penalties for UUW also vary depending on the specific offense. Possessing a firearm without a valid FOID card is a Class A misdemeanor in Illinois. The citation may include a year or more in jail and fines totaling or exceeding $2,500. If your criminal history consists of a felony conviction, possessing a weapon unlawfully is a Class 2 felony. Punishments range from 3-7 years in State prison and files totaling $25,000.
2) Aggravated Discharge of a Weapon
Aggravated discharge of a weapon is a severe gun charge in Illinois. Under Illinois law, a person commits aggravated gun discharge when they knowingly discharge a firearm in the direction of another person, a vehicle, or a building.
The penalties for aggravated discharge of a weapon are severe. It is a Class 1 felony, punishable by 4-15 years in prison and a fine of up to $25,000. If the discharge of the firearm results in significant harm, permanent disability, or disfigurement, the offense is elevated to a Class X felony, punishable by 6-30 years in prison.
3) Reckless Discharge of a Weapon
Reckless discharge of a weapon is another common gun charge in Illinois. Under Illinois law, a person commits reckless discharge of a gun when they recklessly discharge a firearm in a manner that endangers the physical safety of an individual.
If you are facing gun charges in Illinois, hiring a criminal defense attorney with experience with weapons laws in the state is essential. A skilled criminal defense attorney can help you understand and evaluate the charges against you, build a strong defense, and fight to protect your rights.
At Sabuco Beck, P.C., we have years of experience defending clients against charges. Contact us today.
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