Carrying a Firearm While Intoxicated In Massachusetts
Massachusetts Gun Laws Protect Citizens
Massachusetts has some of the nation’s most strict gun laws.
Massachusetts has an interest in safeguarding the safety and well-being of its residents which is why residents seeking a firearm license must first take and pass a firearm safety course that is approved by the state. The state then requires its residents to apply for a gun license through their local police department. The local police department will vet the candidate’s application thoroughly before issuing a license.
It is a crime in Massachusetts to carry a loaded firearm in a vehicle while under the influence. Anyone with a valid license to carry a firearm that carries on his person, or has under his control in a vehicle, a loaded firearm, while under the influence of alcohol marijuana, narcotic drugs, depressants or stimulant substances, or the vapors of glue shall be punished by a fine up to $5,000 or by imprisonment in the house of correction for up to 2.5 years, or fine and imprisonment.
Even though this is misdemeanor offense a conviction could also result in a loss of an FID Card or license to carry. A Defendant found guilty of this offense may also have to surrender his firearms to local during term of his probation.
The law only applies to LOADED FIREARMS and applies to police and state officials and anyone licensed to carry a weapon. When prosecuting someone for carrying a loaded firearm while under the influence of intoxicating liquor (FUI), the Commonwealth must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the defendant’s consumption of alcohol diminished his ability to safely carry a loaded firearm on his person or have one under his control in a vehicle. Someone can be found guilty of carrying a loaded firearm in a motor vehicle while intoxicated and innocent of operating a motor vehicle under the influence of alcohol.
Attorney Patrick J. Noonan gets Charge of Carrying a Firearm while Intoxicated Dismissed
Police were dispatched to a restaurant for a disturbance. Upon arrival, police encountered the Defendant in the parking lot. Police observed that the Defendant was intoxicated and they placed him in protective custody. Defendant had a loaded and chambered .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol in his back waistband. Defendant also had another loaded and chambered 9 mm. pistol in a holster affixed to his belt. Defendant also had five knives on his person. In his Motion to Dismiss, Attorney Patrick J. Noonan argued that the complaint should be dismissed because the Defendant was denied his opportunity for a clerk-magistrate’s hearing under G.L. c. 218, §35A. The Commonwealth argued that the Defendant was not entitled to a clerk’s hearing because he posed an imminent threat to the public based upon the nature of the charge, the level of his intoxication, the fact that the firearms were fully loaded and chambered, and because he was affiliated with a notorious motorcycle gang.
Result: Attorney Patrick J. Noonan’s Motion to Dismiss was allowed without prejudice and the Commonwealth must request a Clerk-Magistrate’s Hearing in order to pursue the charge. Subsequently, Police requested a clerk-magistrate’s hearing. At the hearing, Attorney Patrick J. Noonan persuaded the clerk-magistrate not to issue the criminal complaint but to keep the matter on file for three-months after which time the criminal complaint was dismissed.
Charged With Carrying a Firearm While Intoxicated or Another Weapons Offense?
Call 508-584-6955 For A Free Initial Consultation
A charge for Carrying a Firearm While Intoxicated is a serious charge and can result in jail time. If you have been charged with a weapons offense you need a lawyer that knows the ins and outs of this specialized area of law. You need an attorney that has handled ammunitions and firearms cases for clients in the past.
No matter where you are located in Massachusetts, expert legal help is just a phone call away. To schedule a free, no-obligation case review and free consultation with an experienced Brockton / Greater Boston Area, MA Criminal Defense Trial Lawyer call our law offices at (508) 584-6955.