Can You Go to Jail for Gun Charges in Utah?
Carrying a firearm in Utah is legal if you observe certain laws. If you are found violating these laws, you may be imprisoned for a gun charge. Utah also has categories for individuals who cannot carry a firearm for certain reasons. If you have been arrested and are facing gun charges in Utah, you should consult with a Salt Lake City gun charge defense lawyer. Darwin Overson of Overson Law explains the penalties for weapons charges in the state of Utah. To receive a free consultation, contact our law offices today.
Who is Allowed to Carry a Gun in Utah?
Utah acknowledges the rights of its citizens to carry guns. However, the state of Utah is strict when it comes to determining who is authorized to carry a firearm. There are two categories of individuals who, if they are caught carrying a firearm, will face stiff penalties.
Category I restricted persons:
- Individuals convicted of a violent felony
- Individuals on probation or paroled for a felony;
- Individuals on parole from a facility for youth offenders;
- Individuals deemed delinquent within the last 10 years for a charge which, if committed by an adult, would have been charged as a violent felony;
- Individuals who are in the United States illegally.
Individuals who meet the requirements for a Category I restricted person could face a second-degree felony charge if they are caught possessing a firearm.
Category II restricted persons:
- Individuals convicted of any felony
- Individuals convicted of a charge involving the unlawful use of a controlled substance, individuals using drugs illegally, or a person who is knowingly, intentionally, and simultaneously in “unlawful possession of a firearm and a Schedule I or Schedule II substance.”
- Individuals who are deemed “mentally incompetent to stand trial for a felony offense,” or who are committed to a mental institution.
- Individuals deemed as delinquent “within the last seven years for an offense which, if committed by an adult, would have been a felony”
- Former U.S. citizens who have chosen to renounce their U.S. citizenship
- Individuals discharged from the military in circumstances that are not honorable.
People who meet the requirements for a Category II restricted person could face a third-degree felony charge for possession of a firearm.
Instances Where Carrying a Firearm is Illegal
Utah has various laws that govern where an individual can carry a gun and where they cannot. These laws obviously do not apply to law enforcement, U.S. marshals, judges, or federal officers who are required to carry a firearm. Here are some places in Utah where it is illegal to carry a firearm:
- You may not carry a concealed firearm in Utah without a concealed carry permit. This law does not apply if you are in your own home or on your own property.
- You may not carry a firearm into a religious institution or into a private home, even with a concealed carry permit, if you are given notice that guns are not allowed on the property. Notice can consist of a personal communication, a sign on the property, or a publication.
- Gun possession at Utah airport is illegal.
- You cannot carry a firearm on school premises.
This is not an entire list of places where it is illegal to carry a firearm in Utah. You should exercise your best judgment when carrying a firearm, and if you are unsure about certain restrictions, you should err on the side of caution and leave the gun at home or consult an attorney.
Possible Charges for Firearm Violations
Utah has several different charges for individuals who violate a firearm law. For example, it is a class A misdemeanor to carry a concealed gun in Utah without a concealed carry permit. You can incur a penalty of up to one year in prison or a $2,500 fine or both for this offense.
As mentioned earlier, Category I violations are considered class two felonies. For a class two felony you can incur a penalty of a $10,000 fine or imprisonment for 15 years, or both.
Individuals who violate Category II restrictions are subject to a class three felony. Penalties for a class three felony include a fine of up to $5,000 or imprisonment up to five years, or both.
If you are fighting a gun charge in Utah, there is no reason to fight it alone. Contact an attorney immediately to help you with your case.
Salt Lake City, Utah Gun Charge Defense Attorney Can Help You Fight Your Case
The Salt Lake City criminal defense attorney Darwin Overson of Overson Law can assist you in fighting your gun charge in Utah. Darwin Overson and his firm of legal professionals have several years of experience in litigating criminal cases for residents of Salt Lake City and across the region. Our law offices would be proud to offer our litigation services to you. To schedule your free consultation, call us at (801) 733-1308.