Know Your Self Defense Options if You Become Trapped in a Demonstration
Particularly in larger cities, citizens are flexing their right to protest peacefully. Americans join in high numbers to exercise an unalienable right to have their voices heard. Regardless of whether you agree with these protests, the likelihood of finding yourself caught up in one on the way to work is a growing possibility.
Occasionally, these peaceful protests go awry and no longer qualify as peaceful, leaving those in their paths fearful for their personal safety. When caught in a demonstration unexpectedly, how do you utilize your Second Amendment rights for protection without becoming subject to a weapons charge?
Illinois Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon
Aggravated Unlawful Use of a Weapon is a felony in Illinois, and is punishable by hefty fines, imprisonment, and a permanent mark on a criminal record. Unless you are on your personal property or place of business, you may incur charges of Aggravated UUW if:
- Your firearm is uncased, loaded, and easily accessible;
- You do not have a Firearm Owner’s Identification Card (FOID) or a Concealed Carry License (CCL);
- The firearm is not encased or loaded, but the ammunition is immediately available; or
- Other provoking factors.
Obtain Your FOID and CCL
It is essential to procure your FOID to retain a firearm in your home and a CCL to carry it around legally, ensuring preparedness in an emergency. A few requirements you must meet to qualify are:
- No prior felony convictions;
- No mental illnesses diagnosed within the last five years;
- You do not have an intellectual or developmental disability;
- You do not have a restraining order against you; and
- You must not have any recent conviction of violent crimes with the use of a weapon.
If You Do Not Have a Firearm
If you find yourself in the midst of any dangerous situation, the best rule of thumb, regardless of having a weapon or not, is to attempt to flee the situation. If possible, an attempt must always be made to remove the dangerous threat. If escape is impossible, and you or your family or loved ones are in imminent danger of losing your life, you must do what is within your ability to make it home safely. Understand that no matter what you use, be it a car, debris from the road, or something else within reach, this will likely be labeled as a deadly weapon in court.
Your Defense for Self-Defense
Act first to save your life and worry about the legal logistics later. If you acted in self-defense after finding yourself in the middle of a protest and you or someone you love was in life-threatening danger, it is advisable to retain legal defense as soon as possible. Time is critical to gather the evidence that will support your story.
If you are interested in discussing your options with a DuPage County, IL criminal defense attorney, contact Davi Law Group, LLC today at (630) 580-6373. We offer several locations and proudly serve clients in DuPage, Kane, Cook, Kendall, and Will Counties.