4 Common Gun Crimes in Alabama

Although the constitutions of the U.S. and the state of Alabama generally recognize the right of citizens to bear arms, there are some limits on what Alabama residents may do with regard to possession and use of firearms. Guns are frequently the weapon used in murder and manslaughter cases and assault with a deadly weapon, but this blog will take a look at four crimes that focus entirely on individuals’ behavior with regard to firearms. 

  1. Discharging a firearm into an occupied OR unoccupied building. This offense under Title 13A of the Alabama Criminal Code designates this act as either a Class B or Class C felony, depending on whether the structure you shot into was occupied. This crime also covers shooting into an occupied boat, vehicle, or aircraft. This particular offense does not address intentional or unintentional shooting into a building. 
  2. Ex-felon in possession of a firearm. Along with being (temporarily or permanently) disenfranchised from being able to exercise the right to vote, those who have been convicted of a felony in Alabama are also prohibited from owning or possessing a gun. Also included in this offense are those who have been convicted of any misdemeanor offense related to domestic violence or anyone who is the subject of a protective order that prohibits firearm ownership or possession. Federal law also prohibits convicted felons from owning or possessing firearms; if convicted of this charge in federal court, you could be facing up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. 
  3. Altering of a firearm’s identifying mark. On any gun, there are clues as to who manufactured the firearm and who owns the firearm (when you check the database to see whom it is registered to). Any attempt to conceal, remove, or alter these identifying marks is designated as a Class C felony. 
  4. Possession of a firearm by someone attending a public demonstration. In this context, a public demonstration is an event in which attendees picket, air views or grievances, march, hold a vigil, or otherwise assemble in a public space. State law prohibits anyone who is attending or participating in a demonstration to possess a firearm. It also prohibits anyone from possessing a gun within 1,000 feet of a demonstration after a police officer orders that person to back away if he or she continues to be in possession of a firearm. A conviction for this offense is only a misdemeanor. 

Conclusion

We have provided only four examples of gun crimes for which you can be charged in Alabama. Some laws, such as felon in possession of a firearm, are quite common, while others are somewhat obscure and rarely used. Whatever you’re charged with, John M. Totten, Attorney at Law is well-equipped to provide you with a vigorous and aggressive defense in a court of law. Call us soon at 256-233-2025 to discuss your options.

Written by John M. Totten

John M. Totten

John's office is in Athens, Alabama, where he has helped thousands of people in North Alabama with everything from family law issues, to catastrophic injury and death cases, to criminal defense.