Despite the Second Amendment, there are many ways in which individual laws may restrict the right to bear arms. Connecticut is strict compared to many other states when it comes to gun laws, imposing substantial restrictions on who may own or carry various types of firearms.
Any allegation that you violated Connecticut state law regarding gun ownership, purchase, and/or sale could have serious consequences. To mitigate the repercussions you face, work with a Bridgeport gun lawyer at Ruane Attorneys. Our legal team is prepared to discuss your legal options and help contest the charges against you.
State-Level Restrictions on Firearm Ownership
Permanent residents of Connecticut can only purchase handguns if they have already obtained a Permit to Carry Pistols or Revolvers and/or a valid Eligibility Certificate. Additionally, the seller must have obtained an authorization number for the sale from the state Special Licensing and Firearms Unit. Limited exceptions to this rule apply to licensed firearms dealers and sworn police officers, as a Bridgeport gun attorney could further explain.
Connecticut residents wishing to purchase a rifle or shotgun must be at least 18 years old, lawful residents of the United States, and eligible under Connecticut General Statutes §29-37p to obtain a long gun eligibility certificate from the Commissioner of Emergency Services and Public Protection. The following may disqualify a person under the statute:
- Failure to successfully complete a Commissioner-approved firearms safety course
- Prior conviction for any felony criminal offense or certain misdemeanor offenses like third-degree assault
- Conviction as a minor for any serious juvenile offense
- Discharge from confinement in a mental health facility within the past 20 years after being found not guilty due to insanity of any criminal offense
- Involuntary confinement in a mental health facility by court order within the past five years
- Voluntary confinement in a mental health facility within the past six months for reasons other than alcohol or drug use
- Subject to any active restraining order, protective order, or firearms seizure order
In certain circumstances, valid permits to carry and/or sell pistols or revolvers issued by the state of Connecticut may be substituted for the long gun eligibility certificate.
Common Gun-Related Charges in Bridgeport
Under C.G.S. §29-35, carrying a pistol or revolver without a permit outside of a personal home or place of business is generally a class D felony punishable by between one and five years of imprisonment. One year of the sentence is considered non-suspendable unless the court determines that sufficient mitigating circumstances apply. Anyone convicted of this offense is also subject to having their firearm permanently confiscated by law enforcement.
Furthermore, C.G.S. §53a-217c makes it a class C felony for anyone ineligible to own deadly weapons under state law—for example, someone with a felony criminal conviction on their record—to possess a firearm. As a gun lawyer at our firm could explain, a conviction for this offense could result in a maximum ten-year prison term with two years ineligible for suspension, plus a mandatory minimum $5,000 fine up to a maximum $10,000 fine.
Seek Help from a Bridgeport Gun Attorney
Navigating legal regulations on purchasing and owning guns can be difficult. However, criminal charges for violating the state’s gun laws can be even harder to handle, particularly for individuals with existing criminal records.
Support from a Bridgeport gun lawyer is vital to protecting your rights and preserving your future prospects. Call Ruane Attorneys today for a private consultation.