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Attorney Katherine A. Gonos
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When can carrying firearms result in a felony?

On Behalf of | Jun 14, 2024 | Criminal Defense |

Georgia has a reputation for gun-friendly legislation. However, alongside the right to bear arms comes a responsibility to understand the legalities. Gun charges can range from misdemeanors to felonies, with significant consequences.

Carrying a concealed weapon

Carrying a concealed weapon without a permit is a serious offense. The severity of the charge depends on whether it’s a first offense or subsequent offense. A first offense is typically a misdemeanor, punishable by fines and potentially up to a year in jail. However, subsequent offenses call for felony charges, carrying steeper fines and potential prison sentences.

Bringing weapons in gun-free zones

The state has designated certain locations as gun-free zones. These places include schools, government buildings, courthouses and some bars and restaurants. Possessing a valid permit doesn’t allow a person to carry a firearm in these areas. Violating gun-free zone laws can result in misdemeanor or felony charges, depending on the circumstances.

Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon

Georgia law prohibits convicted felons from possessing firearms. This applies to both in-state and out-of-state felony convictions. The consequences of violating this law often result in mandatory prison sentences. The sentence can vary depending on the nature of the prior felony, but it generally carries a sentence of one to five years in prison.

There are also other gun-related charges in Georgia, such as improper gun storage, straw purchasing—which is buying a gun for someone who is prohibited from owning a firearm—and using a firearm in the commission of a crime. Each of these offenses carries its own set of penalties.