Over 100 Not Guilty Verdicts At Trial | Over 2,000 Dismissals
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Gun violence at schools across the nation in recent years has led to many states enacting further restrictions on the possession of weapons and firearms on all types of educational property. In Florida, possessing a weapon or discharging a firearm on or near school grounds is a felony offense.
Because of the highly sensitive nature of these kinds of crimes, prosecutors will often seek the toughest possible punishments for alleged offenders. People can face these charges even when they have valid concealed weapons licenses.
If you have been arrested for allegedly possessing a weapon or discharging a firearm on or near any kind of school property in Florida, you should seek legal representation right away. Pumphrey Law works tirelessly to get criminal charges for alleged gun crimes reduced or possibly even dismissed.
Our criminal defense attorneys in Tallahassee also serve many surrounding communities, including Port St. Joe, Graceville, Perry, Marianna, Malone, Blountstown, and Wewahitchka. We can evaluate your case and help you understand all of your legal options as soon as you call (850) 681-7777 for a free, confidential consultation.
Except as authorized in support of school-sanctioned activities, Florida Statute § 790.115 prohibits people from exhibiting or possessing certain types of weapons on or near school property. It is a third-degree felony for an alleged offender to exhibit any of the following in the presence of one or more persons in a rude, careless, angry, or threatening manner at a school-sponsored event or on the grounds or facilities of any school, school bus, or school bus stop, or within 1,000 feet of the real property that comprises a public or private elementary school, middle school, or secondary school, during school hours or during the time of a sanctioned school activity:
It is also a third-degree felony for an alleged offender to willfully and knowingly possess any of the above items at a school-sponsored event or on the property of any school, school bus, or school bus stop. If an alleged offender discharges a firearm at a school-sponsored event or on the property of any school, school bus, or school bus stop, it is a second-degree felony.
A person is allowed to carry a firearm at a school-sponsored event or on the property of any school, school bus, or school bus stop in the following scenarios:
Under Chapter 10.21 of the Florida Standard Jury Instructions, a prosecutor must prove all four of the following elements beyond a reasonable doubt in order to convict an alleged offender of improper exhibition of a firearm or other weapon at or near school property:
Criminal charges for possession of a firearm or other weapon on or near school property are largely the same, although a prosecutor does not need to prove that the alleged offender exhibited the weapon in any way. Alleged offenders who discharged firearms or exhibited weapons in lawful self-defense cannot be found guilty of these crimes.
Exhibiting or possessing a weapon or firearm and discharging a firearm on school grounds is punishable as follows:
A conviction for a felony offense can have dramatic consequences for an alleged offender. In addition to a damaging criminal record that can impact possible employment opportunities, convicted felons also their rights to own or possess firearms.
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Were you arrested in Florida for allegedly exhibiting, possessing, or discharging a firearm or other weapon on school property? Regardless of whether you had a concealed weapons license, you could face severe criminal penalties.
The Tallahassee criminal defense attorneys of Pumphrey Law represent clients throughout Madison County, Leon County, Jackson County, Gulf County, Calhoun County, and Taylor County. You can have us review your case during a free consultation by calling (850) 681-7777 or filling out an online contact form.
This article was last updated on August 15, 2016.
Attorney Don Pumphrey, Jr. is a former prosecutor, former law enforcement officer, and a successful and experienced criminal defense attorney. Don has achieved over 100 not guilty verdicts at trial and over 2,000 dismissals.
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