Suffolk Gun Crimes Attorney
Suffolk is one of the largest and most population-dense counties in Massachusetts, which explains why there are more gun arrests in Suffolk County than anywhere else in the state. And, with prosecutors and judges taking an especially aggressive approach to weapons offenses, it is imperative that anyone charged with a gun crime secure a dedicated criminal defense attorney as soon as possible. At the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy, our Suffolk criminal defense attorney has over 25 years of experience handling all types of gun crimes on behalf of residents in Revere, Chelsea, Winthrop and throughout Suffolk County. We take an individualized approach to every case we handle, ensuring that each of our clients receives the attention they need to obtain the result they are looking for.How Common Are Gun Suffolk County Gun Crimes?
According to the most recent data from the Massachusetts Trial Court, Department of Research and Planning, Suffolk County prosecutors file the most gun cases out of all the counties in Massachusetts. In fact, in 2022, there were 3,564 people who were charged with gun crimes and other weapons offenses. This amounts to about a third of all weapons crimes in the state.Massachusetts Gun Laws
While the Second Amendment provides individuals with the right to own and use firearms, that right is not absolute. Over the years, courts and lawmakers have continually restricted citizens’ access to firearms. These restrictions prohibit certain individuals from owning guns and limit where lawful gun owners can carry a firearm.
For example, there are two types of gun licenses in Massachusetts, a Firearm Identification Card and a License to Carry. Firearm Identification Cards are required for anyone who owns a shotgun or rifle that is not a high-capacity weapon. A License to Carry is needed if you own a handgun or a large-capacity rifle or if you plan to concealed carry.
Carrying a handgun or other gun without the necessary permit is considered the unlawful carrying of a firearm. Under Massachusetts General Laws Chapter 269 Section 10, unlawfully carrying a firearm carries a sentence of up to five years in state prison or 2.5 years in a house of correction.
However, if you have a prior conviction for a violent crime or serious drug offense, unlawfully carrying a weapon will subject you to a sentence between three to 15 years in state prison. And, if you have two prior convictions for violent crimes or a conviction for one violent crime and one serious drug offense, you’ll face a sentence between 10 and 15 years. Further, the court is unable to suspend any portion of the sentence until you’ve served the minimum portion of the sentence, which is ten years.Defenses to Suffolk County Gun Crimes
While weapons offenses are extremely serious, not every arrest ends in a conviction. Far from it, actually. There are a number of defenses to gun crimes that can prevent the weapon from being used as evidence or otherwise result in the prosecution withdrawing your case or the jury acquitting you. For example, one of the most common defenses to firearms charges is a motion to suppress based on law enforcement’s violation of your constitutional rights. Under the Fourth Amendment, police officers must have probable cause or reasonable suspicion, depending on the circumstances, to search you, your belongings, your vehicle or your home. If an officer conducts a search without legal justification, anything they recover as a result of the search is inadmissible at trial. An experienced Suffolk gun crimes lawyer can review your case to determine whether this defense applies to your situation.Have You Been Charged with a Suffolk County Firearms Crime?
If you have an upcoming court date for a gun case, the Law Office of Patrick J. Murphy can help. Attorney Murphy has decades of hands-on experience defending the rights, futures and freedom of individuals facing all types of weapons crimes. Whether he is advocating to keep evidence out of trial, negotiating with prosecutors to secure a favorable plea agreement, or litigating your case in front of a jury, Attorney Murphy has the knowledge, skill and dedication needed to help you reach the result you need to put your arrest behind you and move on with your life. To learn more, and to schedule a free consultation with an attorney today, call 617-367-0450 or reach out to us through our online contact form. We represent clients throughout Suffolk County, including in Chelsea, Revere, and Winthrop.