Laws pertaining to guns and other dangerous weapons are covered by Title 4 of the Maryland Criminal Law Code. This section, entitled Weapon Crimes, comprises laws pertaining to handguns, assault pistols, antique firearms, weapon concealment, ammunition, destructive devices and more. If you’ve been charged with a gun crime in Maryland, you could be faced with either a misdemeanor or felony along with heavy fines and years of imprisonment upon conviction. Your most effective form of legal recourse is to procure the assistance of one of our Maryland gun lawyers, who could exhaust all available resources in examining the details of your case. Only by securing legal representation of such caliber can you assure the chance of receiving the most favorable outcome at trial.
Deadly Weapons on School Property
Maryland criminal code§ 4-102covers the legality of deadly weapons on school property. This code does not apply to law enforcement officers, individuals hired to guard school property, individuals engaged in an organized, educational shooting activity, or individuals engaging in a historical demonstration for educational purposes with an invitation in writing from the school principal.
According to part (b) of this code, it is illegal for a person to possess a firearm or other deadly weapon on the property of a public school. This crime is a misdemeanor punishable by three years in prison and a fine of up to $1,000.00, making it in your best interests to consult a Maryland gun attorney.
Child’s Access to Firearms
Maryland Criminal Law Code§ 4-104covers laws pertaining to children and their access to firearms. In this case, a child is defined as a person under 16 years of age. This code specifically prohibits an individual from leaving or storing a loaded firearm in a place where an unsupervised child could access the firearm. Exceptions include:
- If the child is supervised by someone over the age of 18
- If the child accessed the firearm after unlawful entry
- If the firearm is possessed by a law enforcement officer engaged in official duties
- If the child has a hunter and firearm safety certificate
According to part (d) of this code, the penalty for violation is a misdemeanor as well as a fine of up to $1,000.00. However, a violation may not be regarded as evidence of negligence.
Wearing, Carrying or Transporting Handgun
Maryland criminal code§ 4-203 covers laws pertaining to wearing, carrying and transporting handguns. According to this code, it is illegal to wear, transport or carry a handgun, regardless of whether it’s concealed, without the proper permits. This code also prohibits individuals from carrying, wearing or transporting a handgun, regardless of concealment, in any vehicle traveling in a parking lot or on a highway, road, airway or waterway. This code does not apply to law enforcement officers, members of the armed forces on duty, correctional officers, or individuals transporting a handgun to or from a place of legal sale or target range.
The penalty for wearing, transporting or carrying a handgun without the proper permits is a misdemeanor, as well as a jail sentence ranging from 30 days to three years and a fine ranging from $250.00 to $2,500.00. If the crime is committed on school property, the minimum jail sentence is 90 days. For second-time offenders, the penalty is a prison term between one and 10 years, or three and 10 years if the offense is committed on school property. For third-time offenders, the penalty is a prison term between three and 10 years, or five and 10 years if the offense is committed on school property.
Use of Handgun or Antique Firearm in Commission of Crime
Maryland criminal code § 4-204 covers the law pertaining to using a gun in the commission of a separate crime, such as armed robbery or sexual assault. According to this code, it is illegal for an individual to use a handgun or antique firearm in the commission of a violent crime, or in a felony crime, regardless of whether the gun is operable when the crime is committed.
The penalty for using a gun in the commission of a violent or felony crime is a misdemeanor, as well as a prison term ranging from five to 20 years. In this case, the mandatory minimum sentence is five years, with no possibility of parole. This sentence runs consecutive to any sentence imposed for the violent or felony crime. Because the penalties are severe, it may be best to consult a Maryland gun attorney instead of handling the case alone.
Possession of Firearm at Public Demonstration
Maryland criminal code § 4-208 covers laws pertaining to the possession of a firearm at a public demonstration, such as marching, speech-making, picketing, holding a vigil, protesting or otherwise participating in a gathering that intends to attract onlookers. According to this law, it is illegal for an individual to possess a firearm at a public demonstration, or in a vehicle that is closer than 1,000 feet to a public demonstration. This law only applies to individuals who have been advised that a demonstration is occurring by a law enforcement officer, and those who have been ordered to leave the place of demonstration until the firearm has been disposed of.
The penalty for violating this law includes a misdemeanor conviction, as well as a fine of up to $1,000.00 and up to 12 months’ imprisonment.
Assault Pistol Laws
Subtitle 3 of Title 4 of the Maryland Criminal Law Code covers laws pertaining to assault pistols. According to code§ 4-301, an assault pistol is defined as one of the following weapons or a copy of one of the following weapons made by any manufacturer:
- Wilkinson semiautomatic “Linda” pistol
- Weaver Arms semiautomatic Nighthawk pistol
- UZI semiautomatic pistol
- Spectre double action semiautomatic pistol, such as Mitchell, F.I.E., Sile
- Skorpion semiautomatic pistol
- P.A.W.S. type semiautomatic pistol
- Intratec TEC-9/DC-9 semiautomatic pistol
- Ingram MAC 10/11 semiautomatic pistol, Partison Avenger, SWD Cobray
- Holmes MP-83 semiautomatic pistol
- Heckler and Koch semiautomatic SP-89 pistol
- Encom MK-IV, MP-45 or MP-9 semiautomatic pistol
- D Max Industries semiautomatic pistol
- Claridge HI-TEC semiautomatic pistol
- Bushmaster semiautomatic pistol
- AA Arms AP-9 semiautomatic pistol
According to Maryland Criminal Law Code § 4-303, a person may not transport any assault pistol into Maryland. This same code prohibits possessing, selling, offering to sell, purchasing, transferring, or receiving an assault pistol in Maryland. Exceptions are made for individuals who lawfully possessed their assault pistol prior to June 1, 1994, and those who registered their assault pistol before August 1, 1994.
Further, code § 4-304 states that law enforcement officers may seize and dispose of assault pistols as contraband if they’re possessed, received, purchased, transferred, sold or transported.
Code § 4-306 outlines the penalties for possession of assault pistols. Violation of this statute is a misdemeanor that results in imprisonment for up to three years and a fine not to exceed $5,000.00. If the assault pistol is used in the commission of a felony crime or violent crime, the penalty is imprisonment of between five and 20 years. For repeat offenders, the penalty is a prison sentence between 10 and 20 years. These sentences run consecutively to any other sentences imposed for the violent or felony crimes and as such should be addressed with the assistance of a Maryland gun attorney.
Our criminal defense lawyers are located at offices spread conveniently throughout the state of Maryland, giving you easy access to a free initial consultation and competitively priced legal assistance thereafter. Being charged with a gun crime in Maryland is extremely serious, and could result in incarceration, insurmountable fines and extreme difficulty obtaining housing and employment even after you’ve exited the criminal justice system. With the help of a seasoned, knowledgeable Maryland gun defense attorneys, defendants may improve their chances of having charges lowered or dropped entirely.
Baltimore is a haven for gun crimes with a total of 9,664 violent crimes per year, including 3,707 robbery crimes, 5,561 aggravated assault crimes, 238 murders and 158 forcible rape crimes per year. Along with over 29,000 annual property crimes, this adds up to a staggering overall crime rate of 6,079 crimes per 100,000 people per year. If you’ve been accused of a gun crime in Baltimore, it’s strongly advisable toseek the legal assistanceof one of our Baltimore criminal attorneys.
Bethesda’s per capita crime rate is less than half that of Baltimore’s at 2,772 crimes per 100,000 people per year, though this is still well above the national average. Bethesda is mid-sized at just over 60,000 residents, with a whopping 97.5% of workers employed in white-collar positions. However, this statistic has done little to quell the number of violent crimes that occur in the city each year. Being charged with a gun crime in Bethesda warrants the help of one of our defense lawyers.
College Park is around half the size of Bethesda at roughly 30,000 residents. However, the crime rate is close to Baltimore’s at 5,840 crimes per 100,000 people annually. Although 88% of the workforce is white-collar, over half of the population is made up of individuals between the ages of 18 and 24, which may have something to do with the high rate of crime. Gun charges in College Park are very serious, and could result in a misdemeanor or felony conviction.
Columbia is a relatively large city located halfway between Baltimore and Washington, D.C. The city is largely driven by administrative jobs, with 94% of its workforce in the white-collar sector. The crime rate is far below College Park’s and Baltimore’s at 2,807 crimes per 100,000 people per year, and the vast majority of these are property crimes as opposed to violent ones. Our criminal defense attorneys in Columbia will examine each detail of your gun crime case to formulate the strongest defense possible.
Montgomery County includes nearly one million residents spread across cities such as Bethesda, Germantown, Gaithersburg, Rockville and Silver Spring, its biggest city. The crime rate in Silver Spring is well above the national average at 3,625 crimes per 100,000 people per year. Law enforcement takes gun crimes very seriously in Montgomery County, which is why it’s so crucial to have a skilled, experienced criminal defense lawyer at your side throughout each step of your trial.
Prince George’s County
Located just east of the District of Columbia, Prince George’s County contains over 863,420 people spread across well over 60 cities, many of them smaller than the ones found in Montgomery County. Some of the major cities include College Park, Suitland-Silver Hill, Hyattsville, Oxon Hill-Glassmanor, Chillum and Bowie, the largest city in Prince George’s County. Crime in Bowie is relatively low at 2,354 crimes per 100,000 individuals per year.
Rockville is a mid-sized city in Montgomery County that includes 61,000 people and a moderate crime rate of 2,547 crimes per 100,000 people annually. The annual violent crime rate is well below the national average, and even further below the Maryland average. Roughly 90% of its workforce is dedicated to white-collar work. If you’ve been charged with a gun crime in Rockville, you owe it to yourself to talk to one of our defense attorneys. Our Rockville gunlawyer page isavailable here.