Gun cases are typically prosecuted in the largest jurisdictions, so there are many in Prince George’s County and Baltimore City. That being said, gun cases are prosecuted across the state and throughout the region. In Maryland, federal gun offenses are serious and carry significant penalties. Prosecutors put in hard work to get convictions.
Before their first court date, a defendant should know everything they can about their gun case. They should sit down with their attorney and figure out what the strengths and the weaknesses of their case are and what their best options are from the standpoint of going to trial, going to a plea, or diversion.
Read below to learn more about the prosecution of Maryland federal gun charges. And if you are facing charges, get in touch with a seasoned gun lawyer today.
In a gun charge case, the prosecution needs to prove that the person is illegally in possession of the gun. It could be actual possession like it is in their pocket, or they could argue that it is constructive possession like it is not on their person, but it is within their control somehow or another.
Second, they have to prove that the gun is operable, so they have police officers who will test-fire the guns in the laboratory and record the results, which are then taken to court. There is a trial to prove that the gun is operable. They have to bring evidence about license and registration and prove that the person did not have the legal authority to have that gun in the way that they had it.
If it is a federal case, then they have the interstate commerce issue that they try and prove, such as that the gun crossed state lines somehow. Reach out to a knowledgeable lawyer to learn more about what needs to be proven in the prosecution of Maryland federal gun charges.
In trying to prove a gun charge case, the prosecution typically uses evidence such as testimony by a police officer or the person who seized the gun. Then they have the expert who comes to testify that the gun is operable. They can frequently present the evidence in relatively short order and the challenge is figuring out how the defense should respond and when it gets the chance to put on its case and present evidence.
Possession is an element of a gun charge case that will be hotly contested in court. During the pretrial process, there might be challenges about how the gun was obtained or seized by the police officers. A motion will be filed to suppress the evidence because it was either found or seized illegally.
To know about the Maryland prosecutor involved in their case, a person should hire a local lawyer familiar with the various courts. While every jurisdiction has different policies and different approaches in dealing with these cases, they need an attorney who knows the differences and the general rules that apply for that county. The state attorney’s office might offer diversion under certain circumstances, but might not offer diversion for gun cases for example or they might have policies where if it is a second offense they approach it differently.
Everyone should know that the trial process comes with much risk and uncertainty. Sometimes it is difficult to know in advance how it is going to turn out. It is essential for the defendant to pay attention to their attorney’s evaluation of their case. There is no guarantee of a win or loss, a probable conviction, or an acquittal. They want to make sure they are making the best decision they can under the circumstances. Sometimes that means going to trial, sometimes it means not going to trial. It is crucial for a defendant to have an attorney with the experience to give them good guidance. Call today to learn more about the prosecution of Maryland federal gun charges and how an attorney could help you.