Common Weapons Charges in Ohio
There are several reasons you may be looking at a weapons charge. Some examples include using a weapon while intoxicated, carrying a firearm in a prohibited space, owning a prohibited weapon, or providing weapons to youth. You will receive a criminal possession of a weapon charge if you are found carrying with a past conviction of a domestic violence misdemeanor or have a domestic violence restraining order.
Unlawful Carrying of Weapons
Some gun owners in Ohio do not possess a concealed carry license, and if those specific people are caught concealing a weapon without a permit it will lead to arrest. Charges range from a 1st-degree misdemeanor up to a 4th-degree felony, especially if the weapon is a firearm and loaded. Even if you possess a license for concealed carry you still could be charged for violating its provisions, such as not disclosing to an officer that you are carrying or not complying with an officer’s orders.
Ohio Gun Laws
Because Ohio is considered an open carry state, it is legal to buy and possess a handgun, shotgun, or rifle without obtaining a license and without registering the gun. If you want to carry a concealed handgun on you or in your car, you must obtain a license, be an active-duty military officer, or a law enforcement officer. A concealed carry permit requires 8 hours of training, and you must be 21 years of age.
Where Weapons are Prohibited
If you have a concealed carry permit, there are some places you cannot carry. Many federal or state-run agencies prohibit concealed carry like police and sheriffs stations, airports, or courtrooms. Schools do not allow the carrying of weapons, including universities and colleges. In addition, some schools do allow weapons to be in a vehicle that is locked. And lastly, most places of worship do not allow weapons.
Some weapons are always illegal to carry in Ohio, regardless of licensure. These are sometimes referred to as dangerous ordnances and include automatic and sawed-off shotguns, explosives, bombs, grenades, military weapons, ballistic knives, and silencers. Possession of any one of these will likely result in a 5th-degree felony charge.
Depending on the severity of your charge, the penalties can range from minor fines to jail time. Additionally, you may have a weapons conviction on your permanent record. These penalties bar you from certain types of employment or licensure, gaining citizenship or naturalization rights, or legally owning firearms in the future. It’s essential to have a competent lawyer working for you to reduce charges and minimize the penalties associated with the criminal possession of a firearm.