An Explanation of the Most Common Weapons Charges in Illinois
Weapons charges in Illinois has potentially severe criminal penalties. Punishments run anywhere from a misdemeanor to a Class X felony depending on a variety of factors of the case, resulting in fines to potential jail or prison sentences. These factors include the location of the alleged crime, the number, and type of weapons involved, and the severity of any injuries incurred. Many cases become exacerbated by any previous criminal history or if other charges accompany the weapons charge. Unfortunately, ignorance of the law is not a good excuse in many weapon-related cases. If you face a weapons charge in Illinois, it is a good idea to understand your accusations.
Reckless Discharge of a Firearm (720 ILCS 5/24-1.5)
This law applies to instances when a suspect fires a gun in a reckless manner which endangers the safety of another individual. The code does not explicitly indicate what qualifies as “reckless,” leaving it up to the judgment of the arresting officer and the court. If the suspect were a passenger in a moving vehicle, both the passenger and the driver would receive the charge. If convicted, the resulting penalty is a Class 4 felony which is punishable by one to three years in prison.
Unlawful Use of a Weapon (UUW) (720 ILCS 5/24-1)
Although the Second Amendment allows everyone to bear arms, each state is allowed to place various restrictions on allowable weapons. In Illinois, it is illegal in most cases to carry a loaded gun. Although this charge indicates the “use” of a weapon, this criminal charge applies typically when someone only has an illegal item in their possession. Restrictions include the sale, manufacture, purchase, or possession of a bludgeon, “black-jack”, “slung-shot”, “sand-club”, “sandbag”, metal knuckles, throwing star, or switchblade knife. Other restrictions include the carry or possession of:
- Dangerous knives;
- Broken bottles or pieces of glass;
- Stun guns;
- Tear gas guns;
- Revolvers; or
- Other firearms.
Contact an Illinois Criminal Defense Attorney Today
If you face criminal prosecution for any weapons-related crime, it is vital that you seek the assistance of a Wheaton weapons charge defense attorney as soon as possible. Laws surrounding firearms and other weapons change all the time, making it increasingly important to have your case evaluated by a knowledgeable and experienced attorney. The attorneys at Davi Law Group, LLC are former criminal prosecutors, so we understand the intricacies of both sides of your case, giving you the upper hand in defense options. Call us today at 630-580-6373 to schedule a private and confidential consultation.