A criminal conviction can carry a number of short-term and long-term consequences. A defendant may be ordered to spend time behind bars or pay substantial fines as part of his sentence. But, can the court order you to forfeit your firearms after a criminal conviction? Here’s what you should know:
Domestic Violence Offenders
Domestic violence victims often file restraining orders to protect themselves from their abuser. If a protective order is filed against you, then you will need to relinquish any firearms in your possession. Other states give law enforcement the authority to demand the surrender of firearms when they respond to any type of domestic violence incident. But, this is not the case in Colorado.
Forfeiture of Weapons Used When the Crime Was Committed
If a defendant is convicted of a crime, the prosecution can ask the court to order the defendant to forfeit weapons used during the commission of the crime. For example, if a defendant is convicted of armed robbery, the court can order him to forfeit the weapon used when he was committing this crime.
Possession of a Weapon by a Previous Offender
It is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony, an attempted felony, or conspiracy to commit a felony to own a firearm. This is true regardless of whether or not the firearm was purchased before it became illegal for the owner to have it in his possession.
If you violate this law, you could be charged with possession of a weapon by a previous offender. This is usually a class 6 felony crime that carries penalties of up to 18 months in prison and fines of $100,000. However, it can be charged as a class 5 felony or class 4 felony under certain circumstances. A conviction of a class 5 felony crime can lead to up to three years in prison and $100,000 in fines. If it is charged as a class 4 felony, you could face up to six years in prison and $500,000 in fines.
Because these penalties are so serious, anyone who is no longer eligible to own a firearm because of a criminal conviction should forfeit their weapons to avoid these consequences.
If you are worried about losing your right to own a firearm, contact Reisch Law Firm. Let our criminal defense attorneys fight to protect your constitutional rights and your future. Schedule a free consultation today by calling 303-291-0555 or filling out this online form.