Las Vegas Defense Attorney for Firearm and Weapon Charges
Experienced Criminal Defense Law Firm in Clark County, Nevada
Las Vegas firearms and weapons defense attorney Joseph Gersten is uniquely qualified to understand and defend against gun charges: He is an approved Concealed Firearm Instructor for Nevada and Utah and is certified by the National Rifle Association (NRA) in more than nine (9) disciplines. Attorney Gersten understands the significant implications that a gun or weapon conviction can have on your future, including how it can affect your employment opportunities. He will draw on his extensive courtroom and criminal defense experience to explore all available options in finding a resolution to the weapon or firearm charges filed against you.
In Las Vegas, there are numerous federal and state laws and regulations that apply to possession and use of firearms and other weapons. The restrictions apply regardless of whether you are a Nevada resident or a visitor from out-of-state. If you are facing a criminal charge in federal or state court for violating the laws regulating guns, firearms, or other weapons, you can count on The Gersten Law Firm to forcefully and passionately represent you.
Las Vegas Gun and Weapon Laws
Nevada is referred to as an open carry state: No permit is required to purchase, own, or possess a gun. However, the state does have a law requiring a permit to carry a concealed firearm, commonly referred to as a CCW (carrying a concealed weapon) law. A concealed weapon is one carried on a person in a manner not noticeable by normal observation. It can be inside or under clothing or in a purse or backpack carried by a person. Carrying a concealed weapon without a permit can result in felony arrest.
While Nevada generally does not prohibit open carry of a firearm, it is illegal in the state to carry a loaded rifle or loaded shotgun in a vehicle on a public highway. The prohibition does not apply to handguns.
Pistols, handguns, and rifles are also not permitted in specific locations, including: airports (past security) and planes, child care facilities, schools, Nevada System of Higher Education property, legislative buildings, post offices, federal facilities, and VA facilities. Written permission can be obtained to carry in some of these facilities.
Concealed Firearm Permits in Las Vegas
In Clark County, the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department processes CCW permit applications for Nevada residents and out-of-state residents. Applicants are photographed and fingerprinted. A background check is conducted. In addition to paying the application fee, applicants must meet age requirements, lawfully able to possess a firearm, and have successfully completed an approved firearms course in Clark County.
Individuals over twenty-one years of age can apply for a CCW permit if they meet other requirements. In addition, as of May 22, 2017, Nevada law permits honorably-discharged veterans and those on active military duty who are between eighteen (18) and twenty-one (21) years of age to apply for a CCW permit in Nevada.
There are quite a few reasons that a person may be ineligible to obtain a permit. Some of the more common include:
- Felony conviction, outstanding arrest warrant(including traffic), or pending criminal charge
- Conviction of a crime involving use or threatened use of force or violence, including misdemeanors, within the last three (3) years
- Habitual abuse of liquor or controlled substance, including medical marijuana patients and persons with a DUI conviction within the five (5) previous years
- Conviction of a crime involving domestic violence or stalking or being under a court order involving protection against violence
- Current parole or probation status
- Dishonorable discharge from the United States military
- Judicial determination of mental incompetence
Out-of-State CCW Permits in Nevada
Nevada has CCW reciprocity with some states, allowing holders of valid permits from those states to carry a concealed weapon while in the State of Nevada. The valid permit along with current photo I.D. must be in the possession of the person at all times while carrying a concealed firearm.
As of July 2016, state law allows holders of valid permits from these states to carry a concealed weapon while in Nevada: Alaska, Arizona, Arkansas, Florida, Idaho Enhanced Permit, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi Enhanced Permit, Montana, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota (both types of permits), Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina, South Dakota Enhanced Permit, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming.
Non-Firearm Weapons in Clark County
Under the law, weapons include any instrument that can be used in an attack or for defense when fighting. A motor vehicle can be a weapon if it is used with the intent of causing death, injury, or destruction. Specific items that are weapons under Nevada law include, but are not limited to:
- Explosive substances
- All firearms, including pistols and revolvers
- Knives, switchblades, machetes, dirks, daggers
- Bats, sticks, clubs, blackjacks, nunchucks
- Trefoils (throwing stars / ninja stars)
- Metal or brass knuckles
Firearm and Weapon Offenses in Nevada
Nevada law prohibits individuals from manufacturing, importing, selling, possessing, or using silencers and specific weapons, including: belt buckle knives, switchblade knives over two (2) inches long, blackjacks, slungshots, billies, sand-clubs, sandbags, and metal or brass knuckles.
Carrying a concealed gun or other prohibited weapon without a permit can result in your arrest. Even if you have a CCW permit, there are other prohibitions that constitute weapons and firearms criminal offenses, including:
- Unlawful possession of a firearm or other illegal weapon
- Using a gun in the commission of a crime
- Possessing a gun while under the influence of drugs or alcohol
- Possession, manufacture, sale, or import of specific illegal dangerous weapons
- Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon
- Improper exhibition of a firearm
- Weapon enhancement
- Assault with a deadly weapon
- Carrying a loaded rifle or shotgun in a vehicle on a public highway
- Aiming a gun at a person
- Brandishing a gun in a threatening manner
Penalties for Nevada Gun and Weapon Offenses
Gun-related offenses are serious charges. A conviction can result in a prison sentence, substantial fine, and even deportation, depending on your immigration status.
A misdemeanor conviction can result in six (6) months in prison and a fine of $1000. Felony charges carry prison terms ranging from one (1) year to life in prison, and fines up to $10,000, depending on the degree of the felony offense.
A firearm or weapon charge on your record can substantially affect important parts of your life for many years, including employment, military enlistment, college financial aid, and the right to vote. Las Vegas criminal defense attorney Joseph Gersten knows firearms and weapons. He knows the laws on firearms and weapons. Attorney Gersten puts his many years of experience as a practicing attorney to work in providing aggressive representation for his clients who face firearm and weapon charges.
Schedule a Free Consultation with an Experienced Las Vegas Firearms and Weapons Defense Attorney
If you are facing any federal or state weapon or firearm charge in Las Vegas, Henderson, or elsewhere in Clark County, Las Vegas Attorney Joseph Gersten will discuss and evaluate your case based on his extensive criminal defense experience. Your initial consultation is free-of-charge. Call 702.857.8777 or complete our online form to schedule an appointment.