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Houston Gun Crime Lawyers

The state of Texas, known for its deep-rooted appreciation for individual freedoms, often stands out for its gun laws. However, the right to bear arms doesn’t give carte blanche permission to carry or use firearms indiscriminately. Violations of gun laws, especially in situations where firearms are used in the commission of a crime, can result in severe legal repercussions. If you’re accused of violating a state or federal gun law, simply contact our Houston gun crime lawyers today.

Texas Gun Crime Lawyers | Protecting Your Second Amendment Rights

Gun crimes come with harsh consequences, even in “pro-gun” states such as Texas. For this reason, if you’re facing unlawful carry, felon in possession, or any other gun charge, you need a team of competent Harris County criminal defense lawyers in your corner. The Sparks Law Firm stands ready to fight for you and fiercely protect your Second Amendment rights.

Texas Gun Laws at a Glance

The Lone Star State holds a reputation for being relatively permissive when it comes to firearm ownership and carry rights. Residents are not required to register their firearms, and there is no waiting period for firearm sales. Nonetheless, certain laws and restrictions come into play.

  • License to Carry (LTC): While open carry is legal for those holding an LTC, Texas is not a constitutional carry state. This means individuals must obtain a permit to carry handguns, either openly or concealed.
  • Places Off-Limits: Even with an LTC, firearms are prohibited in specific areas, such as schools, polling places, courthouses, racetracks, and secured areas of airports.
  • Background Checks: Federally licensed dealers must conduct background checks, although private sales between residents are exempt.

Penalties for Violating Gun Laws

Despite its firearm-friendly stance, Texas doesn’t hesitate to penalize those who violate its gun regulations. Some potential penalties for violating the state’s gun laws are as follows:

  • Unlawful Carry: Carrying a firearm unlawfully, such as carrying without an LTC or carrying in restricted areas, can result in a Class A misdemeanor. This can mean a fine of up to $4,000, jail time of up to a year, or both.
  • Felon in Possession: Convicted felons are prohibited from possessing firearms for five years after their release. If caught within that period, they can face third-degree felony charges, which entail two to 10 years in prison and potential fines.

Aggravating Circumstances

Certain scenarios or actions can intensify charges and penalties associated with gun crimes.

  • Using a Weapon to Commit a Crime: If a firearm is used or exhibited during the commission of a felony, even if it isn’t discharged, it can upgrade the charge. For instance, an aggravated robbery charge can result if a gun is brandished during a theft, leading to a first-degree felony.
  • Weapons at Airports: Bringing a firearm into an airport’s secured zone, even unintentionally, can result in a third-degree felony charge, especially if the individual intended to bypass security.
  • Sales to Minors: Selling a firearm to someone under 18 without parental consent is a state jail felony, leading to 180 days to 2 years of incarceration.

The Impact of Federal Law

While Texas law governs most gun-related crimes in the state, federal law can come into play, especially when interstate elements are present. For instance, selling a firearm to a resident of another state or transporting a gun across state lines without proper licensure can lead to federal charges.

Contact Our Texas Gun Crime Lawyers Today

While Texas maintains a relatively balanced approach to gun rights and gun control, the state remains vigilant against those who misuse firearms or flout its regulations. This duality serves as a reminder that rights come hand-in-hand with responsibilities. If you or someone you know faces gun-related charges in Houston or anywhere in Texas, prompt legal consultation can make a difference. Contact our Houston gun crime lawyers today so we can get started crafting your defense.

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