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New Report Shows Guns Recovered in Burlington County NJ

Charges for a Gun in Mount Holly NJThis month, New Jersey Governor Phil Murphy announced the release of the state’s first GUNStat report, a report that details statistics related to gun violence, including the origin of the firearms used in the commission of crimes. The report aims to detail where those guns are coming from, in an effort to help raise public awareness and recognize trends. The report found that nearly 77% of the firearms used in crimes of gun violence in New Jersey came from other states, identifying the State of Pennsylvania as the top “source state” for crime guns.

With its close proximity to Pennsylvania, Burlington County is a leading source of guns recovered in New Jersey. In fact, there were 17 guns recovered in Burlington County in April 2018. Among these, a total of five guns were recovered in Willingboro, NJ. Below is an explanation of some of New Jersey’s laws on guns for your reference. For additional information regarding gun laws or gun charges in the Burlington County area, contact the attorneys at The Law Offices of Leonard Biddison at 856-427-6888.

New Jersey Laws on Gun Ownership

While it is legal, under certain conditions, to purchase a firearm out of state and bring that firearm into New Jersey, many restrictions apply and you must obtain the proper permits and follow required procedures. In order to obtain a handgun in New Jersey, you must first apply for a New Jersey Permit to Purchase a Handgun. A separate permit is needed for the purchase of each handgun and New Jersey law imposes a limit of purchasing only one handgun per month. If you want to buy a shotgun or a rifle you must complete and submit an application for a New Jersey Firearms Purchaser Identification Card. Certain types of firearms are banned in New Jersey, including assault rifles.

Transporting Firearms into NJ

If you are transporting a firearm into New Jersey or through New Jersey, the firearm must be unloaded and contained in a case or carrier or locked in the trunk of the vehicle. The firearm cannot be directly accessible from the passenger compartment. If you are transporting the firearm into—instead of through—New Jersey, you must obtain any and all relevant permits including a firearms purchaser identification card, a carry permit (if you are seeking to carry the firearm) and fulfill all registration requirements under New Jersey law.

Arrests for Illegal Guns

The purpose of gun control is to prevent gun violence. Gun violence and gun related offenses are treated very seriously in New Jersey. In addition to criminal offenses for possession of a firearm that you do not own or do not have a permit for, having a gun during the commission of another crime can significantly heighten the degree of the offense, as a gun is considered a deadly weapon. For instance, robbery is a second degree crime that becomes a first degree crime when a gun is involved. Similarly, burglary is upgraded from a third degree crime to a second degree crime if the defendant is armed with a firearm.

Even if you are not otherwise engaged in criminal activity, a typically law-abiding citizen could be charged with a gun offense if they are not educated about the requirements under New Jersey law. However, ignorance of the law—that is, not knowing what the law is—is not a valid defense.

Gun Lawyers in Mount Holly, NJ

If you have been charged with a criminal offense involving a firearm in Burlington County or elsewhere in New Jersey, you may be facing significant jail time, fines, and a criminal record. With such strict laws, if you are a gun owner or a prospective gun owner, it can be difficult to have confidence in your compliance with New Jersey gun laws. The experienced gun lawyers at our firm are experienced and knowledgeable about the nuances of New Jersey gun laws. We are prepared to help you navigate through the process of registration and permitting for a firearm or represent you against criminal allegations, if you have been charged with a gun related offense. Contact us today at 856-427-6888 for a free consultation.

Evesham Township Traffic Stop Leads to Firearm Charges

Evesham NJ Gun Possession ChargesAfter a traffic stop in Evesham Township, New Jersey, a Burlington man is facing serious weapons charges for unlawful possession of a handgun and other weapons.

The aforementioned motor vehicle stop occurred in the vicinity of Ardsley Drive on Route 73 in Evesham Township at approximately 6:35 p.m. on Friday, October 13th. Officers from the Evesham Police Department pulled over a vehicle containing four occupants, one of whom was 28-year-old Burlington resident Christopher Miles.

Under suspicion that there were drugs inside the car, officers told the driver and passengers to exit before they conducted a search. All of the car’s occupants exited aside from Miles, who was sitting in the back seat. When he finally did get out of the car, officers say he dropped a loaded handgun with a high-capacity magazine. The gun was defaced, which is a separate crime under New Jersey weapons law.

Miles was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm, possession of a defaced firearm, and possession of a high-capacity magazine. He was being held in Burlington County Jail in Mount Holly, NJ prior to a bail hearing. He is now facing serious consequences, as it is typically a second degree crime in New Jersey to possess a handgun without a valid carry permit. If you are charged with second degree gun possession, not only are you facing 5 to 10 years in NJ State Prison, but this charge is subject to sentencing under the Graves Act. The Graves Act requires those convicted to serve between one-third and one-half of the sentence imposed, or 3 years, whichever is greater, before becoming eligible for parole.

As for the charges associated with the defaced firearm, this is also considered a violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5, the unlawful possession of a weapon statute. Possession of a defaced firearm in New Jersey is typically a fourth degree crime. This is an indictable offense, also known as a felony, which exposes you to up to 18 months incarceration.

Obviously, the charges in this case are severe. However, there are many potential defenses that an experienced criminal defense attorney may use to beat them. For instance, was there probable cause for the initial motor vehicle stop? If not, the resulting evidence obtained is inadmissible in court. Similarly, if the police did not have reasonable belief that a crime was being committed when they searched the vehicle, the weapons allegedly retrieved may not be allowed into evidence.

Contact Evesham NJ Unlawful Handgun Possession Attorneys

If you are facing weapons charges in Burlington County or elsewhere in South Jersey, it is critical to enlist knowledgeable legal counsel. Leonard Biddison is a veteran criminal defense lawyer who has won numerous weapons cases over the course of his over 20-year career. Mr. Biddison thoroughly investigates each case with the help of his private investigator, a former New Jersey State Trooper, to identify potential violations of his clients’ rights. He uses the specific facts of your case to undermine the State’s arguments and aggressively pursues the best possible outcome. For more information and a free consultation about your gun or weapons charges, contact The Law Offices of Leonard Biddison online or by phone at 856-427-6888.

For additional information related to this case, visit the following: Burlington man accused of carrying defaced loaded handgun

Burlington Township Man Arrested for Possession of Firearms, Marijuana

Burlington NJ Criminal Defense LawyerA man from Burlington Township was recently arrested on charges for possession of marijuana under 50 grams, intent to distribute marijuana, and multiple weapons offenses after police reportedly discovered four guns and marijuana in his residence.

This case began when officers from the Burlington Township Police Department conducted a traffic stop at approximately 8:45 p.m. on Tuesday, August 8, 2017. During the stop, police discovered the driver, 26-year-old Burlington Township resident Gabriel Williams, had an outstanding warrant for his arrest out of Westampton in connection with a harassment charge.

After Williams was arrested, authorities proceeded to his residence located on Tattersall Drive in Burlington Township, where a search resulted in the seizure of a partially defaced semi-automatic handgun, a defaced semi-automatic rifle, a semi-automatic handgun, a revolver, several high capacity magazines and additional ammunition, marijuana, and $5,050 in cash. Notably, all of the weapons confiscated in Williams’ residence were loaded at the time.

Now, Williams is facing a host of serious criminal charges, including: four counts of unlawful possession of a weapon, two counts of possession of a defaced firearm, possession of hollow-point ammunition, two counts of possession of a high capacity magazine, a certain persons offense, possession of marijuana with the intent to distribute, and possession of marijuana under 50 grams.

Williams was issued specific charges in connection with the various weapons found in his home because they qualify as “prohibited weapons and devices” under New Jersey law. For example, a defaced firearm is a prohibited weapon in New Jersey, meaning it is illegal for anyone to possess these items under any circumstances. Possession of a defaced firearm is a fourth degree crime in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-3, Prohibited Weapons and Devices, and is punishable by up to 18 months in NJ State Prison. Hollow-point ammunition is also a prohibited weapon or device and as such, may lead to charges for a fourth degree crime.

Williams is also charged with a “Certain Persons Not to Have Weapons” offense, which applies to individuals who have been previously convicted of certain felonies. Under the statute, N.J.S.A. 2C:39-7 – Certain persons not to have weapons, any person who was convicted of aggravated assault, arson, burglary, escape, extortion, homicide, kidnapping, robbery, aggravated sexual assault, sexual assault, bias intimidation, endangering the welfare of a child, or any person who has been convicted of other than a disorderly persons or petty disorderly persons offense for the unlawful use, possession or sale of a controlled dangerous substance in New Jersey or another state, is prohibited from owning, purchasing, or possessing, or controlling a weapon in New Jersey. When the weapon in question is a firearm, this offense is a second degree crime, which may result in up to 10 years of incarceration if convicted.

For additional information regarding this case, access the following article: Cops say they found marijuana and 4 loaded guns in man’s home

Willingboro Traffic Stop Leads to Marijuana, Gun, Prescription Drug Charges

Willingboro NJ Criminal Defense LawyersAfter a motor vehicle stop in Willingboro recently, police discovered marijuana, prescription drugs, drug paraphernalia, and a handgun, which led to criminal charges against both of the vehicle’s occupants.

According to officials from the Willingboro Township Police Department, officers stopped a vehicle at the intersection of Route 130 and Charleston Road on Friday, July 28th. They allegedly detected the odor of marijuana coming from the car, which prompted a search of the vehicle. During the search, police reportedly confiscated over 50 grams of marijuana, prescription pills, drug paraphernalia, and a semi-automatic handgun.

The vehicle’s occupants, 26-year-old Taquorie Genwright and 26-year-old Sharif Brooks, both of whom are Willingboro residents, were subsequently arrested and charged with a variety of drug and weapons offenses. Specifically, both defendants have been charged with possession of marijuana, possession of prescription drugs, drug paraphernalia possession, unlawful possession of a weapon, and possession of a weapon while committing a drug offense. The penalties associated with each of these crimes are serious and diverse.

First, let’s take a look at the drug charges. Possession of marijuana over 50 grams is a fourth degree crime in violation of section N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10(a)(3) of the New Jersey Criminal Code, and may result in any of the following penalties: up to 18 months in New Jersey State Prison, a 6-month driver’s license suspension, and a fine of up to $25,000. On the other hand, possession of prescription drugs in New Jersey, whether it involves Xanax, Percocet, Adderall, Oxycontin, or another prescription medication, can range be a disorderly persons offense or a fourth degree crime, depending on the number of units or pills involved in the specific offense. According to N.J.S.A. 2C:35-10.5, possession of 4 or fewer pills is a disorderly persons offense, while 5 or more pills is increased to a fourth degree crime.

Then, there is the unlawful possession of a weapon charge, which in this case, arose from the handgun found in the vehicle. Under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5, unlawful possession of a handgun is a second degree crime in New Jersey, which is punishable by between 5 and 10 years in prison. In addition, illegal gun possession is a Graves Act offense, which means the person convicted must serve 1/3 to 1/2 of the total sentence, or 3 years, whichever is greater, before becomining eligible for parole.

Lastly, when drug crimes and weapons offenses intersect in New Jersey, this may give rise to an additional charge, often referred to simply as a “Drugs and Guns” violation. New Jersey law addresses Weapons and Controlled Dangerous Substances in N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4.1, which states, “Any person who has in his possession any firearm while in the course of committing, attempting to commit, or conspiring to commit a [drug offense] is guilty of a crime of the second degree.” This is a separate second degree crime with a separate 5 to 10-year term of imprisonment, which must be imposed in addition to the sentences associated with any other convictions for drug or weapons crimes.

Willingboro NJ Criminal Defense Lawyers

Obviously, with the extent of the charges in this case, the defendants may be subject to severe consequences if they are ultimately found guilty. In fact, even a conviction for a single charge, such as unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of marijuana, or prescription drug possession, can result in life-altering repercussions. When you are facing drug or weapons charges in Burlington County, it is extremely important to build the best possible defense strategy. Leonard Biddison is a highly experienced criminal defense lawyer has been successfully defending clients against criminal charges in Willingboro, Burlington County, and throughout South Jersey for over 2 decades. To discuss your specific charges and find out how he can help you, contact The Law Offices of Leonard D. Biddison today at 856-427-6888 for a free consultation.

For additional information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Cops find pistol, pot, pills during roadside arrest

Westampton Police Charge Man with Marijuana, Gun Possession

Westampton NJ Marijuana LawyerOfficers from the Westampton Police Department recently arrested a man on charges for possession of marijuana, possession of drug paraphernalia, and unlawful possession of a weapon, after he was allegedly found with drugs and a weapon during a routine motor vehicle stop.

According to authorities from the Westampton Township PD, 20-year-old Virginia resident Cameron G. Coles was stopped by officers in the parking lot of the Wawa on Springside Road in Westampton at approximately 9:30 p.m. on Friday, April 14th. The stop arose when officers noticed that Coles had parked his vehicle in a handicapped parking spot without the necessary tag or license plate indicating that he was disabled.

When police approached the vehicle, they allegedly saw an airsoft handgun located inside the glove box. A subsequent search of the car revealed a small marijuana grinder containing suspected marijuana residue, as well as 2 digital scales. As a result of the investigation, Coles was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, possession of marijuana, and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Case Issues Involving Marijuana and Guns in New Jersey

This case illustrates multiple issues that are specific to New Jersey law. First and foremost, the officers did not need to obtain a warrant to search the vehicle because the airsoft gun was supposedly in “plain view.” The plain view doctrine in New Jersey is among the exceptions to the warrant requirement. Essentially, it says that police do not need a warrant to search a person’s property if the police are lawfully in the location where the evidence is observed and it is immediately apparent to police that the item in plain view is contraband or evidence of a crime.

The second component of this case is the airsoft gun itself, which gave rise to charges for unlawful possession of a weapon. Notably, New Jersey does not apply state-to-state reciprocity to gun ownership, meaning a person who obtains a lawful permit to purchase or possess a weapon in another state cannot possess the same weapon in New Jersey without first obtaining a permit in this State through proper channels. Often, out-of-state residents face gun and weapons charges in New Jersey because they simply do not know that they cannot bring their weapon across State lines without a New Jersey permit.

The third component of this case is the possession of marijuana charge that arose because the grinder contained suspected marijuana residue. In New Jersey, you can be charged with possession of marijuana, possession of cocaine, possession of heroin, etc., if any amount of drug residue is discovered in an item considered drug paraphernalia. In other words, you need not possess a substantive amount of a drug to face drug charges.

Contact a Westampton NJ Marijuana Possession Attorney to Discuss Your Case

All of these issues can be thoroughly investigated by an experienced criminal defense attorney and may provide opportunities for challenging the State’s case, arguing that certain evidence be deemed inadmissible in court, and/or providing grounds for a dismissal of the charges altogether. Burlington County criminal defense lawyer Leonard Biddison often utilizes strategies like these to beat criminal and DWI charges in courts throughout Burlington County and South Jersey. To discuss your case with Mr. Biddison today, contact his offices at 856.427.6888 for a cost-free consultation.

For additional information pertaining to this case, access the following article: Virginia man charged with possession of airsoft gun, drug paraphernalia

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