Criminal Possession of a Weapon - First Degree
In terms of the nature of the crime, Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the First Degree is treated the same by prosecutors as Manslaughter in the First Degree or Attempted Murder in New York. This offense is rarely charged because of its specific nature. However, when it is charged, prosecutors often push for very harsh penalties and engaging in reasonable plea negotiations can be difficult as these types of cases frequently garner media attention.
There are two situations which can lead to charges under this statute. The first is to possess a bomb or other explosive device, with the intent to use it. The second is to illegally possess 10 or more firearms, essentially being considered an unlicensed arms dealer.
Possession of a bomb, in circumstances which can be used to infer an intent to use it, will frequently be associated with terrorism and other extremely serious charges.
Criminal Possession of a Weapon in the First Degree is a class B felony. The minimum sentence this carries is five (5) years in prison, and the penalty could be up to 25 years. Due to the huge exposure here, having an attorney who knows the intricacies of New York weapons laws, who can advocate for you and make sure that every one of your rights is fully protected, is of the utmost importance.
With increasing regularity, an important element of these types of cases is DNA evidence. DNA evidence, or even the lack thereof, can often be a helpful tool both in negotiating a plea bargain or even at trial. In any case where law enforcement attempts to collect DNA, it is extremely important to have an attorney who understands what the implications to your case are when DNA is either found, or not found, at a crime scene.
If you are charged with weapons possession it is important that you have an attorney who has a deep understanding of all these laws and who can maneuver through the exceptions and applicable defenses for you. The New York weapons and firearms attorneys at the Law Offices of Jeffrey Lichtman are well versed and knowledgeable in how DNA can be taken and how easily the process can be tainted. Call (212) 581-1001 to speak to us about your case today.