There are several different gun-related offenses that may be filed against someone in the state of Michigan. One of the most often brought accusations in Michigan’s courts is carrying a concealed firearm.
This serious offense, often known as CCW, has a maximum five-year jail sentence, a maximum fine of $2,500, and the surrender of the firearm. If you are convicted of carrying a concealed firearm, the penalties are stiff, and your felony charges could hinder your ability to find work.
Michigan’s gun laws are quite complex. A gun’s location or how it’s carried can determine whether it is lawful or illegal. There can be serious repercussions for unlawfully concealing a firearm but depending on the circumstances, you may have a variety of legal defenses.
How The Law Regards Carrying a Concealed Weapon Michigan
According to Michigan Penal Code § 750.227, a person shall not carry a concealed pistol unless they are in their own home, business, or on their own land unless they have a license to do so. The violation of this provision is a felony punishable by imprisonment for up to five years or a fine of up to $2,500.
Michigan Penal Code § 28.425o further defines the law to state that you cannot carry a weapon on these premises without a concealed carry license:
- Places of worship, unless presiding authorities permit concealed firearms
- Sports stadiums
- Public or private daycare, child care, or placement agency
- Community college, college, or university dormitories and classrooms
- Schools or school premises, although parents or guardians may carry while dropping off or picking up children
- Entertainment venues containing 2,500 or more seats
- A bar whose principal source of revenue is the selling of alcoholic beverages by the glass for consumption on the premises
- Hospital facilities
Special circumstances apply to casinos, where the rules are more stringent, and the penalties are higher. Further, unless the chief judge has provided prior consent, weapons are not allowed in any courtroom, office, or other area utilized for official court activity or by judicial staff.
Being convicted is a felony, and even for first-time offenders, many prosecutors would not offer you a misdemeanor plea. However, a criminal defense attorney can help you learn more about the penalties for carrying a concealed weapon and work to reduce or eliminate your charges.
What Is the Definition of a Concealed Weapon in Michigan?
A concealed weapon is one that can’t be seen by the average person. This is different from an openly carried weapon. Here, it’s important to remember that weapons that are in holsters are not, by definition, hidden. They are hidden when they are out of sight.
By definition, guns can’t be carried in plain sight in cars. So, you need a concealed pistol license (CPL) in Michigan if you want to carry a pistol in a car. Without a CPL, drivers can only carry pistols that are unloaded and in containers as long as they are not accessible by the occupants, such as in the trunk.
Police officers, CPL holders, and people from other states with valid concealed carry permits are the only people who can legally carry a concealed pistol in Michigan. Those who don’t fit these criteria can face serious penalties for carrying a concealed firearm in Michigan.
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Can You Open Carry a Gun in Michigan?
In Michigan, it is permissible to carry a handgun in public with lawful intent, and the firearm must not be hidden. You will not locate a statute permitting open carry of a handgun because there are no open carry laws in Michigan.
It is lawful since no Michigan statute bans it. However, Michigan law restricts the locations where a handgun may be carried.
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Defenses for Carrying a Concealed Weapon Without a Permit in Michigan
If you are charged with carrying a concealed weapon or a felony involving a handgun, you need a lawyer who is informed about your rights and possible defenses in order to minimize your penalties.
A qualified attorney who specializes in firearms law can examine the details of your case in order to assist you in achieving the most favorable conclusion possible. Some potential defenses for a concealed carry charge in Michigan are:
- No probable cause: Police must have probable cause to arrest you. An attorney can evaluate your legal situation to establish whether or not there was probable cause for the police to place you under arrest. They may have searched you illegally or stopped you and patted you down under false pretenses.
- The gun was in plain view: One possible defense to the charge of carrying a concealed weapon is that you were openly carrying the firearm. Carrying a firearm while on your own property is an additional potential defensive option to “untie the knot.”
- You had no knowledge of the weapon: There are situations when you may not be aware that a weapon is hidden. You may not have known a weapon was stashed in the car or in the pocket of a coat you borrowed.
- Unreliable witness: If someone claims to have witnessed you with a concealed weapon, how would they have known if it was concealed? Perhaps their vantage point misled them, or perhaps they mistakenly assumed you had a concealed weapon.
- You had a legal right to carry: A lawyer can help to determine if, at the time of your arrest, you, in fact, had a CPL that allowed you to legally carry a concealed weapon.
When charged with felony firearm possession, one possible argument is that there was no underlying felony. Defenses in situations involving felons in possession of firearms are that either your weapon rights were restored or the crime was expunged prior to your arrest.
In any event, the facts of each individual instance vary. A competent lawyer can provide viable counterarguments to concealed weapons charges.
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Contact Us Now to Learn More About Penalties for Concealed Carry Weapons Charges in Michigan
If you are facing concealed carry charges in Michigan, you need a strong advocate. A detailed understanding of the exceptions and legal arguments connected to weapon charges is essential to your case. Additionally, it requires a high level of legal expertise and courtroom knowledge.
If you’re searching for an aggressive and effective defense, look no further than the Michigan criminal attorneys at White Law PLLC. We’ve successfully represented countless clients in firearms charges. Protect your record, your freedom, and your reputation by contacting us today.
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