Penalties for Possession of Prohibited Dangerous Weapons in New York

Sentencing and penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York may be aggravated if someone is also facing other criminal charges. A judge is likely to impose a sentence that is higher due to the aggravating factor of a weapon being used. 

In most cases, the presence of a weapon is going to make a difference in terms of how the Prosecutor or the judge approaches the determination of what a fair deal is. Retaining an experienced dangerous weapons attorney who with experience in possession cases is really important for somebody who is facing these serious charges.

Proving Possession of a Prohibited Dangerous Weapon

The penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York depends on the sub-section of the possession charge that the defendant is actually facing. If the Prosecutor is claiming that the person had a weapon with the intent to use it against somebody, then the Prosecutor has to prove that the person possessed an object with the intent to use it. If the Prosecutor is charging under a per se weapon statute, then the Prosecutor has to prove that the individual was in possession of an object that the penal law characterizes as a weapon. This is common with firearms or certain types of knives. At that point, they do not need to necessarily prove the intent to use it unlawfully against somebody else, but just their possession of it in those situations is sufficient to get a conviction.

Penalties for Possession of a Prohibited Dangerous Weapon

That depends largely on what the weapon is. If it is a switchblade, then it is a Misdemeanor punishable by up to one year in jail; a loaded machine gun is a C-Violent Felony which can carry a prison term of up to 15 years.  If a person is caught with 10 or more guns in their home, the charges would be even more serious. There is a wide variety of crimes in this section of the penal law covering a large range of situations. Depending on what the potential weapon is, what the Prosecutor can prove the person was intending to do with it, and, questions regarding if it is a firearm, is it defaced; is it loaded; has it been modified at all; is it an automatic weapon; is it even operable are all relevant. The penalties will be based on the nature of the weapon and how it is to be used.

Likelihood of Facing Multiple Criminal Charges

Penalties for possession of prohibited dangerous weapons in New York are often severe in themselves. Charges for assault with a dangerous weapon tends to be compounded and grouped together. If a person commits an assault and pleads guilty, they are sentenced to the charge that they plead to. The fact that a weapon is used is part of the negotiation between the Prosecutor and the defense attorney so that the person who pleads to the assault will most likely have to plead to a penalty that is higher if a weapon was used than that same case would have been if no weapon had been used.