Felony Firearm Possession

As soon as a person pleads guilty or is found guilty of a felony, he or she faces additional consequences of the conviction through the loss of certain rights, including the right to serve on a jury, the right to vote, and the right to carry firearms.

If you are a convicted felon and attempting to move forward with your life, you know what effect the label “felon” has on your ability to get a job and settle into the kind of lifestyle that many in this country take for granted. The citizen’s rights you lost may only be restored with a partial or full pardon by Kentucky’s governor or the President of the United States, and your right to possess, manufacture, or transport firearms may only be restored through a grant of relief by the United States Secretary of the Treasury pursuant to the Federal Gun Control Act of 1968, as amended.

What Are Kentucky’s Laws on Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon?
What are the Consequences of Being Found Guilty of Convicted Felon Possession of Firearm Charges?
What Should You as a Convicted Felon Do If You Are Charged With Firearm Possession?

If you were sentenced and imprisoned for commission of a felony in Kentucky, and have now been arrested and charged with possession of a firearm as a convicted felon in state or federal court, you need to be aware that you face the very real possibility of additional jail or prison time and fines of up to $10,000. Lexington criminal defense lawyer Dan Carman is ready to discuss your charges, help you understand the consequences, and prepare a defense to be used in your trial.

What Are Kentucky’s Laws on Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon?

The pardons and grants of relief—the “exceptions” to the law concerning possession of a firearm by a convicted felon—are set out in section 527.040 of the Kentucky Revised Statutes. Unless a convicted felon has been granted a pardon or granted relief by the United States Secretary of the Treasury, he or she is forbidden by law to possess a firearm.

Kentucky Revised Statute 237.070 makes it illegal to sell or transfer a firearm to a convicted felon who has been prohibited by 527.040 from possession of firearms.

Further, it is a federal crime, pursuant to Title 18, United States Code, Section 922(g)(1), for a person who has been convicted of a crime that results in more than one year of imprisonment to “ship or transport in interstate or foreign commerce, or possess in or affecting commerce, any firearm or ammunition; or to receive any firearm or ammunition which has been shipped or transported in interstate or foreign commerce.”

While charges on possession of a firearm by a convicted felon are most often prosecuted in Kentucky’s courts, the federal authorities may step in if there are aggravating circumstances – for example, if a felon was allegedly caught with a firearm while trafficking illegal drugs, or the firearm with which he was caught is a modified, automatic, or unusually dangerous weapon.

What are the Consequences of Being Found Guilty of Convicted Felon Possession of Firearm Charges?

Firearms are defined in KRS 237.060(2) as “any weapon which will expel a projectile by the action of an explosive.” Subsection (1) of 237.060 defines a handgun as “any pistol or revolver originally designed to be fired by the use of a single hand, or any other firearm originally designed to be fired by the use of a single hand.” These distinct definitions are important to understand when a felon is charged with possession of a handgun—such as a pistol or revolver—as opposed to possession of a firearm.

If a convicted felon is found guilty of possessing a firearm in Kentucky, that person is convicted of committing a Class D felony, pursuant to KRS 527.040(2). Class D felonies are punishable by up to five years and not less than one year in prison, as set out in KRS 532.020(1)(a).

KRS 527.040(2) goes on to say that if that convicted felon is found guilty of possessing a handgun, the crime becomes a Class C felony, which is punishable by imprisonment of at least five and not more than ten years, pursuant to KRS 532.020(1)(b).

When the convicted felon is sentenced for a Class C or Class D felony, in addition to prison time he or she faces fines of at least $1,000 and not more than $10,000. This is spelled out in KRS 534.030(1).

What Should You as a Convicted Felon Do If You Are Charged With Firearm Possession?

While Kentucky’s gun laws have been described by some as lenient, the right to bear arms does not extend to convicted felons. If you’re a convicted felon, state and federal laws make it illegal to carry a firearm for an activity even as commonplace in our Kentucky hills as hunting. You face the possibility of jail time and fines if you’re a convicted felon and are arrested for carrying a firearm while hunting.

If you were arrested under a charge of firearm possession and you are a convicted felon, you may be facing as much as 10 years in prison and up to $10,000 in fines. You need competent legal assistance to address these very serious charges. Dan Carman is a Kentucky weapons possession defense lawyer who will work diligently with you to prepare the defense you need against your charges.

Dan’s work as a criminal defense attorney in Lexington has given him experience in all aspects of criminal law. He is admitted to practice in all Kentucky state courts, the federal courts in both the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky, and in the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals. Before entering private practice, he served as a law clerk for the Honorable Jennifer B. Coffman, United States District Courts for the Eastern and Western Districts of Kentucky. Prior to the clerkship, he served as a judge advocate in the United States Marine Corps.

Contact Dan Carman today by calling (859) 838-1415 or by filling out his online get help now form.