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What Actions Constitute Unlawful Use of a Weapon in Illinois?

 Posted on March 25, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Oak Brook weapons offenses lawyer The Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution gives Americans the right to keep and bear arms. However, federal and state laws regulate who can own and possess guns and other types of weapons. Under Illinois’ Concealed Carry Act, individuals must have a permit to carry a gun in public. In addition, all gun owners must have a Firearm Owner’s Identification Card (FOID). Carrying a gun without the required paperwork can result in fines and even jail time. There are additional actions that constitute the unlawful use of a weapon (UUW). In some cases, a person may not realize his or her actions are illegal. That is why it is important for all Illinois residents to understand the laws since violations can result in serious criminal charges

Illegal Weapons Use

There are many ways that an individual can commit actions that result in charges for the unlawful use of a weapon. In addition to not having a valid permit or FOID, a gun owner may face UUW charges if he or she has a loaded gun accessible in his or her car. Unloaded firearms with ammo readily available in a vehicle may also result in UUW charges. In addition, a person under the age of 21 cannot possess a firearm. 

This crime can also occur when someone sells, manufactures, purchases, or possesses a weapon such as a:

  • Bludgeon

  • Blackjack

  • Sling-shot

  • Iron knuckles

  • Throwing star

  • Switchblade knife

  • Dagger

  • Razor

The majority of UUW offenses are classified as misdemeanors, but some can be charged as felonies, depending on the circumstances of the case. A person acting in good faith may find himself or herself in a variety of situations that would constitute the unlawful use of a weapon, including:

  • Failure to comply with state laws for transporting a gun outside of Illinois

  • Possession of a FOID card that is expired 

  • An administrative violation by a gun owner who is in possession of a firearm at his or her home or place of business

In some scenarios, law enforcement may not have had legal grounds to search a defendant’s automobile or home. UUW offenses can be complicated, but an experienced criminal defense attorney who understands the charges can interpret your Second Amendment rights as well as your Fourth Amendment protections against unlawful search and seizure and Illinois’ UUW statutes to help you build a solid defense.

Contact a Downers Grove Criminal Defense Lawyer

Weapons violations can carry serious criminal charges in Illinois. If you or someone you know is facing unlawful use of weapon charges due to an unintentional violation, it is imperative that you consult with a qualified criminal defense attorney. The accomplished legal team of Khan Nayyar & Associates is well-versed in the many areas of criminal law. Our distinguished Westmont weapons charges attorneys will provide you with the skilled legal counsel you need to avoid a criminal record and incarceration. Call us today at 630-529-9377 to schedule your free consultation.




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