The offense of Felony Firearm means that a person is accused of carrying or possessing a firearm when committing or attempting to commit a felony. It is a separate and additional felony charge and conviction. For example, pointing a gun at a person who is placed in fear of being shot is called a felonious assault. That is a felony. A second felony of felony firearm is being committed by being in possession of the gun.
Also, if a person is carrying a gun on them while selling marijuana to another is responsible for felony firearm. When the police raid a home and find evidence that the home owner is unlawfully possession controlled substances with the intent to deliver them, a felony, and there is a firearm located inside the home, felony firearm is often also charged. Operating While Intoxicated Third Offense qualifies as an underlying felony. Another common accompanying felony is the Felon being in Possession of a Firearm offense.
The penalty for being convicted of felony firearm, 1st offense, is two years in prison MANDATORY. A 2nd offense is five years in prison and a 3rd offense is ten years. There is no probation or parole. If that is not harsh enough, these sentences MUST be served consecutively to any other jail or prison sentence. Therefore if a person is convicted of the felonious assault (FA) and felony firearm (FF) and is sentenced to one year in jail for the FA they must serve the one year first then serve the two years for the FF after or consecutive to the first sentence.
The harsh nature of the felony firearm penalty points out the legislature’s intent to discourage the use of firearms while engaged in felonious acts. The use of firearms exponentially increases the risk of serious injury or death to all persons involved.
Effective defenses to a felony firearm charge include establishing there is no proof of knowledge of the existence or location of the firearm. The prosecution must also prove that the firearm was accessible to the defendant at the time of the felonious activity. The actual existence of felonious activity is also a defense. Self defense is also a valid defense. The law does not apply to a police officer who is authorized to carry a firearm while during the official performance of their duties.
It does not matter if the firearm was not operable or unloaded. Nor is there a requirement that the firearm is owned by the person whom was in possession of it.
If you ,or a loved one, needs an experienced, effective and knowledgeable criminal defense attorney to defend a firearm related charge in the Oakland, Wayne or Macomb county communities of Detroit, Royal Oak, Farmington Hills, Warren, Sterling Heights, Troy, Bloomfield Hills, Westland, Livonia, Birmingham, Rochester, Rochester Hills, or any additional surrounding city contact Attorney Barton Morris at (248) 541-2600 for the best defense.