Criminal Defense

Weapons Charges

MISCONDUCT INVOLVING WEAPONS

Arizona protects the rights of its citizens to bear arms. However, those rights can be limited after conviction for a felony and some misdemeanors. Individuals who are undocumented aliens or nonimmigrant aliens traveling with or without documentation cannot possess deadly or prohibited weapons in Arizona either. Both of these groups of people are prohibited possessors. Possession of a deadly weapon by a prohibited possessor is banned by A.R.S. 13-3102.  An aggressive and experienced attorney can work to reduce a plea or work in order to get the case dismissed entirely. Every case and its facts are different. It is important to meet in person so we can discuss your particular history, and then give clear answers to your questions.

In the state of Arizona, the law liberally permits individuals to carry firearms. However, this right can be taken away. Felony convictions and some types of misdemeanors can prevent someone from doing so.

Misconduct involving weapons is a Class 4 Felony in Arizona.

This felony is considered to be very serious and can prove to be even more problematic if the individual charged has prior convictions. Most people who are charged with misconduct involving weapons in Arizona happen to have prior convictions.

Because of the nature of the crime, the prosecution may make plea offers for misconduct involving weapons that are very harsh and involve substantial prison time. Keep in mind that the first plea offer that they make can change. If you hire our team here at Alcock and Associates, our ultimate goal is to win your case.

An aggressive and experienced attorney can work to reduce a plea or work in order to get the case dismissed entirely. Clearly, every case and its facts are different. That’s why it would be the most beneficial to meet in person so we can discuss your particular history, and then give clear answers to your questions.

Our staff includes former prosecutors and also a former police officer. Throughout the years we have handled hundreds of cases involving misconduct involving weapons. We understand how the law works and the intricate defenses and affirmative defenses that are needed to successfully represent a client charged with this type of crime.

Our firm is dedicated to helping people understand the charges that they face. We believe that our clients should understand how the law works and how to defend you. Call today – 602-989-5000

Misconduct Involving Weapons Trial Strategies

Most Misconduct Involving Weapons cases involve someone with a felony record. The attorneys at Alcock & Associates can file motions to prevent the jury from hearing that you are a felon when they are deciding whether you possessed a weapon. This stops the jury from pre-judging you based on your history rather than deciding the case on the facts from that incident.

The attorneys at Alcock & Associates get up and tell the jury the correct narrative about the charges in your case at trial. Each attorney has their own strategy for these cases, but The Alcock attorneys will teach the jury and inform them of the proper way to vote when it comes to a verdict.

A police officer who often barely graduated high school is going to make assumptions and mistaken connections in weapons cases. The attorneys at Alcock & Associates can direct the story, or narrative, in the proper way so that the jury understands.

Misconduct Involving Weapons in Arizona

Misconduct Involving Weapons is most commonly committed by: Possessing a deadly weapon or prohibited weapon if such person is a prohibited possessor.

-This is a class four felony carrying between 1.5 and 3 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years.

A deadly weapon is anything designed for lethal use including firearms.

Prohibited possessors (individuals not allowed to possess a deadly weapon) include:

  1. People found to be a danger to self or others or to have a persistent or acute disability or grave disability pursuant to court order;
  2. Convicted felons or adjudicated delinquent individuals;
  3. Prison inmates, jail inmates;
  4. Parolees, probationers under Domestic Violence offenses, work furlough participants, home arrestees, and probationers;
  5. Undocumented aliens or nonimmigrant aliens traveling with or without documentation for business or pleasure or who is studying in this state and who maintains a foreign residence abroad. (this doesn’t apply to nonimmigrant aliens with valid hunting license or permit, nonimmigrant aliens here for competitive shooting or display of firearms, diplomats, designates by the US Attorney General, waiver recipients from US Attorney General)
  6. People found incompetent in criminal proceedings and those found guilty but insane;

Prohibited weapons include:

  1. Bombs,
  2. Grenades,
  3. Poison gas,
  4. Silencers(suppressors),
  5. Fully automatic weapons,
  6. Sawed off shotguns/rifles,
  7. Nanchaku,
  8. Molotov cocktails,
  9. Dry ice bombs, and
  10. IEDs.

Misconduct Involving Weapons is committed in several other ways:

  1. Carrying a Deadly weapon except a pocket knife concealed on his person or in his immediate control in or on a means of transportation:
    a. in furtherance of a serious offense as defined in 13-706 such as aggravated assault with injury or kidnapping; a violent crime as defined in 13-901.03(results in death or physical injury or any criminal use of a deadly weapon or dangerous instrument);or

    -This is a class six felony carrying between 6 and 18 months in prison with a presumptive sentence of one year in prison.
    b. When contacted by law enforcement officer and failing to answer the officer if the officer asks whether the person is carrying a concealed deadly weapon; or
    -This is a class one misdemeanor carrying up to six months in jail.

  2. Carrying a deadly weapon except a pocket knife concealed on his person or concealed within his immediate control in or on a means of transportation if the person is under twenty-one years of age; or

    -This is a class three misdemeanor carrying up to 30 days in jail.

  3. Manufacturing, possessing, transporting, selling or transferring a prohibited weapon , except that if the violation involves dry ice, a person commits misconduct involving weapons by knowingly possessing the dry ice with the intent to cause injury or death of another person or to cause damage to the property of another person.

    – This is a class four felony carrying between 1.5 and 3 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years.

  4. Selling or transferring a deadly weapon to a prohibited possessor; or

    -This is a class six felony carrying between 6 and 18 months in prison with a presumptive sentence of one year.

  5. Defacing a deadly weapon; or

    -This is a class six felony carrying between 6 and 18 months in prison with a presumptive sentence of one year.

  6. Possessing a defaced deadly weapon knowing the deadly weapon was defaced; or

    -This is a class six felony carrying between 6 and 18 months in prison with a presumptive sentence of one year.

  7. Using or possessing a deadly weapon during the commission of any felony offense included in chapter 34 of this title(drug offenses); or

    – This is a class four felony carrying between 1.5 and 3 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years.

  8. Discharging a firearm at an occupied structure in order to assist, promote or further the interests of a criminal street gang, a criminal syndicate or a racketeering enterprise; or

    -This is a class three felony carrying between 2.5 and 7 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 3.5 years.

  9. Unless specifically authorized by law, entering any public establishment or attending any public event and carrying a deadly weapon on his person after a reasonable request by the operator of the establishment or the sponsor of the event or the sponsor’s agent to remove his weapon and place it in the custody of the operator of the establishment or the sponsor of the event for temporary and secure storage of the weapon pursuant to section 13-3102.01; or

    -This is a class one misdemeanor carrying up to six months in jail.

  10. Unless specifically authorized by law, entering an election polling place on the day of any election carrying a deadly weapon; or

    -This is a class one misdemeanor carrying up to six months in jail.

  11. Possessing a deadly weapon on school grounds; or

    -This is a class one misdemeanor. However, it is a class six felony if:
    a. hiring, engaging or using a minor for any conduct preparatory to or in completion of a criminal offense in participation of a criminal syndicate; or
    b. hiring, engaging, or using a minor for conduct preparatory to or in completion of an illegal enterprise; or
    c. involving minors in drug offenses; or
    d. While present with drugs in a drug free zone or school.

  12. Unless specifically authorized by law, entering a nuclear or hydroelectric generating station carrying a deadly weapon on his person or within the immediate control of any person; or

    -This is a class four felony carrying from 1.5 to 3 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 2.5 years.

  13. Supplying, selling or giving possession or control of a firearm to another person if the person knows or has reason to know that the other person would use the firearm in the commission of any felony; or

    -This is a class three felony carrying from 2.5 to 7 years in prison with a presumptive sentence of 3.5 years.

  14. Using, possessing or exercising control over a deadly weapon in furtherance of any act of terrorism as defined in section 13-2301 or possessing or exercising control over a deadly weapon knowing or having reason to know that it will be used to facilitate any act of terrorism as defined in section 13-2301; or

    -This is a class two felony carrying from 3 to 10 years in prison with a presumptive of five years.

  15. Trafficking in weapons or explosives for financial gain in order to assist, promote or further the interests of a criminal street gang, a criminal syndicate or a racketeering enterprise.

    -This is a class three felony with a range from 2.5 to 7 years with a presumptive of 3.5 years.

The three big issues in most Misconduct Involving Weapons case are:

  1. Possession
  2. Knowing possession,
  3. Whether you are a Prohibited possessor

Possession can be actual or constructive. Constructive possession is when someone has power or dominion over a weapon. A person has dominion or control when it belongs to them or they have exclusive control over a weapon.  More than one person can have dominion or control over a weapon.

Knowing means that the person had to know that they were aware or believed that they were in possession.

The State must prove that the charged person is a prohibited possessor beyond a reasonable doubt. Your status as a potential prohibited possessor can be unclear and difficult to prove.

Frequently Asked Questions for Weapons Cases

Here are some frequently asked questions about weapons cases in Arizona:
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Alcock & Associates P.C.
2 North Central Avenue, 26th Floor
Phoenix AZ 85004