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Weapons Charges in Pennsylvania 

Korey Leslie, Attorney-At-Law, LLC Feb. 1, 2023

Man hides gun behind his backIn the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, it is an offense to carry, possess, sell, or use firearms and ammunition without the required license. Essentially, state authorities handle weapons violations and gun crimes seriously, and a conviction may result in harsh penalties and other life-long ramifications. If you have been arrested and charged with a weapons offense, hiring an aggressive Pennsylvania criminal defense attorney is crucial to help build your defense. 

With over 15 years of extensive experience, our attorney has the skill and resources to represent and defend clients in their weapons violation cases. As your legal counsel, we can investigate all of the facts of your case, enlighten you about the penalties of a weapons charge, and help strategize a strong defense in pursuit of the most favorable outcome for your unique situation. Our firm proudly serves clients across York, Camp Hill, Lancaster, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. 

Common Weapons Charges in Pennsylvania 

In Pennsylvania, a person may be arrested and charged with a weapons offense for violating state or local statutes addressing the possession, sale, concealment, use, or purchase of firearms, ammunition, and other offensive weapons. Here are some common weapons charges in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania: 

  • Possession of an unregistered firearm 

  • Unlawful use of a firearm 

  • Illegal possession of a weapon 

  • Possession of a deadly weapon 

  • Possession of a firearm by a person prohibited 

  • Theft of a stolen gun 

  • Carrying a firearm without a license 

  • Assault with a deadly weapon 

  • Possession of a Prohibited Offensive Weapon 

  • Weapons on school grounds 

Unfortunately, getting convicted for any of the aforementioned weapons charges in Pennsylvania may result in lengthy incarceration, massive fines, a criminal record, and other severe consequences. A seasoned lawyer can evaluate the nature of your weapons charges and determine your best defenses. 

Unlawful Carrying of Weapons 

According to Pennsylvania law, it is an offense to carry a gun or weapon without a valid license or permit. Depending on the surrounding circumstance, the defendant may face a misdemeanor or felony charge for carrying a firearm without a license. 

Pennsylvania Open Handgun Carry Law   

Furthermore, in order to legally carry a concealed weapon in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania: 

  • You must be at least 21 years old, and 

  • You must have a current and valid PA License to Carry Firearms. 

However, carrying a firearm, shotgun, or rifle at any time on public streets or public property in cities of the first class" (Philadelphia) is prohibited except: 

  • You are licensed to carry a firearm. 

  • You are exempt from licensing, such as members of law enforcement, the U.S. military, or a person at target practice. 

A seasoned lawyer can educate you about the weapons and ammunition that are legal or illegal in the Keystone State and where you can carry them. 

Where Weapons Are Prohibited  

Here are some hot zones in Pennsylvania where weapons and firearms are prohibited: 

  • Vehicles 

  • School grounds 

  • Court facilities 

  • TSA security checkpoints or airplanes 

  • Federal facilities 

  • Hospitals 

  • Prisons or correctional institutions 

  • City parks in Philadelphia 

  • Mental hospitals 

Even when you have a valid license, you're prohibited from carrying a firearm at any of these places. 

Unlawful Weapons 

In the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the following weapons are considered unlawful or offensive: 

  • Bombs 

  • Machine gun 

  • Grenade 

  • Firearm specially made for concealment or silent discharge 

  • Stun guns 

  • Sawed-off shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches 

  • Blackjacks 

  • Dagger 

  • Sandbag 

  • Knife 

  • Stun baton 

  • Tasers or other electric weapons 

  • Metal knuckles 

  • Razor or cutting instrument 

If you or someone close to you has recently been arrested and charged with carrying an unlawful weapon or for a weapons violation, you should get in touch with a strategic criminal defense lawyer immediately. Your attorney can enlighten you about the nature and possible penalties of your weapons charges and help build your defense. 

Possible Penalties 

Depending on the surrounding circumstances, a defendant convicted of a weapons charge in Pennsylvania might be subject to any of these penalties and ramifications: 

  • Substantial fines and court fees. 

  • Lengthy incarceration (ranging from months, years, or decades) 

  • Probation 

  • A criminal record/history 

  • Increased difficulty in traveling to other countries 

  • Prohibited from obtaining a license to carry a gun or firearm 

  • Ineligible to own a legal handgun 

  • Loss of the right to vote during elections 

  • Increased difficulty in getting government benefits 

  • Increased difficulty in securing a new job and accommodation. 

  • Ineligible to obtain certain financial loans 

A highly-skilled Pennsylvania firearm offense defense attorney help determine the best defenses to fight your charges and help keep your record clean. 

Detail-Oriented Legal Advocacy 

Pennsylvania gun laws are very strict. A criminal charge or conviction for weapons violation or gun crimes could possibly jeopardize your quality of life, freedom, career, and future opportunities. Therefore, when facing weapons charges, it is imperative that you retain a reliable criminal defense attorney for detailed guidance and to help strategize your defense. 

At Korey Leslie, Attorney-At-Law, LLC, we're dedicated to offering skilled representation to individuals who have been wrongfully charged with weapons offenses. Using our in-depth knowledge, we can guide you through the Pennsylvania criminal justice system and represent you intelligently at every phase of the legal process. Our trusted attorney will fight aggressively to uphold your freedom and make sure those allegations don't ruin your life. 

Facing weapons violation allegations can be terrifying. Don't face them alone. Contact us at Korey Leslie, Attorney-At-Law, LLC, today to schedule a simple case assessment with a dependable weapons charge defense lawyer. Our firm proudly serves clients across York, Camp Hill, Lancaster, and Harrisburg, Pennsylvania.