Weapon charge penalties in Chattanooga, TN
Penalties for weapons charges in Tennessee vary greatly depending on the nature of the crime and your past criminal history. But most are severe.
Most simple firearms offenses are misdemeanors, with a maximum punishment of one year in jail and a $2,500 fine for a Class A misdemeanor. A good lawyer will ensure that first offenders escape these harshest of punishments,
The most serious weapons charges like possession of a sawed-off shotgun or rifle are Class E felonies or higher, punishable by between one and six years in prison and a fine of up to $3,000. There may be additional penalties for underlying crimes.
Other examples of penalties include:
- Possession of an explosive or explosive weapon: 8-30 years in prison
- Possession of a switchblade knife: up to one year in jail
- Illegal use of firearm: up to 30 days in jail and fines up to $500
Investigations into offenses like these frequently involve federal agents and undercover officers, often using elaborate means to detect illegal activity.
If you are convicted of a federal drug charge, you can expect severe penalties that go beyond the penalties for state drug crimes.
The nature of these penalties varies greatly depending on the type of drug seized (drugs are divided into five Schedules in Tennessee) as well as the amount involved, the location of the seizure, and your criminal record.
Typically, penalties for a federal drug conviction include:
- Imprisonment of more than ten years
- Loss of benefits
A federal charge may also result in other penalties as a convicted felon, including the loss of the right to vote and to own a firearm.
If you face federal criminal charges, it is in your best interest to consult with an experienced attorney immediately.
Penalties for drug offenses
Drug crimes comprise a broad range of offenses which, in turn, incur a wide variety of sentences.
In the case of marijuana charges, for instance, a first-time offense for a small amount for personal use is a Class A misdemeanor.
A Class A misdemeanor can result in one year in jail and fines up to $2,500. However, it may not result in a criminal record if your lawyer can present a strong case to the court.
Distribution of over half an ounce of marijuana, on the other hand, can result in a felony conviction and harsher penalties.
If you have previous drug offenses on your record, you are likely to face more serious penalties too. A marijuana possession repeat offense or possession of heroin, cocaine, or any other serious drug for a second time will mean you face Class E felony charges.
If convicted, you could face between one and six years in prison and fines up to $5,000.
Who cannot own a firearm in Tennessee?
Certain classes of people in Tennessee are forbidden by law to own or possess a firearm.
In particular, this includes anyone who:
- Has been convicted of a felony crime of violence, an attempt to commit a felony crime of violence or a felony involving the use of a deadly weapon
- Has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence
- Is subject to an order of protection or prohibited from possessing a firearm under any other state or federal law
- Is under 18 years of age
Protect Your Firearm Rights: Call Houston & Alexander, PLLC
A criminal conviction in Tennessee can affect your life forever. The experienced weapon charge attorneys at Houston & Alexander, PLLC will protect your rights and freedoms and reduce the impact on your future.
Call us at our Chattanooga office today at (423) 267-6715 or contact us online.