Criminal Storage of Firearms Law & Defense
California Penal Code section 25100(a) - 25300
The laws on the crime of criminal storage of a firearm can be found at California penal code sections 25100(a) through 25300.
There are several variations of criminal charges associated with storing a firearm. The most common criminal charge is perhaps PC 25100(a). For a full list of criminal storage of a firearm offenses please see bottom of this page.
To be found guilty of the crime of criminal storage of firearm filed as PC 25100(a) or 25110(a), the district attorney will need to prove that:
- The defendant kept a loaded firearm on any premise within the defendant's control, and
- The defendant knew, or reasonably should have known, that the loaded firearm was accessible by children, or persons who are prohibited from obtaining firearms, and
- The child, or person who is not lawfully entitled to possess a firearm, caused death or great bodily injury to another person with the firearm.
There are several degrees (levels) of criminal storage of a firearm offenses. The difference in degrees depends on the facts of each case.
For example, if a child finds a gun where the defendant knew a child could easily find the gun, and the child takes that gun to school (a public place), and the child causes great bodily injury to another student with the gun, the criminal charge against the defendant would likely be PC 25100(a), criminal storage of firearm in the first degree.
Example 2: If a defendant leaves a gun where a child could easily obtain the gun, but the child never actually hurts anyone with the gun, the criminal charge against the defendant would likely be criminal storage of a firearm in the third degree.
Criminal storage of a firearm crimes are usually filed as misdemeanors; however, PC 25100(a)) and PC 25110(a) crimes are classified as wobblers, which means that those charges may be filed as a misdemeanor or as a felony.
Whether or not the district attorney files a misdemeanor or felony charge of criminal storage of a firearm in the first degree under PC 25100(a) or 25110(a) depends largely upon the facts particular the alleged crime and the defendant's criminal history.
Sentence & Punishment for PC 25100 Crimes
If found guilty of first degree felony criminal storage of firearm under PC 25100(a) or PC 25110(a), the defendant may face up to three years in prison.
If found guilty of second degree misdemeanor criminal storage of a firearm under PC 25100(b) or 25110(b), the defendant may face up to one year in the county jail.
If found guilty of third degree misdemeanor criminal storage of firearm under PC 25100(c) or 25110(c), the defendant may face up to 180 days in the county jail.
It may be possible in some cases to have the charges dismissed or reduced. It also may be possible to obtain a probation sentence (as opposed to jail), or a sentence that allows for work release or electronic monitoring as opposed to jail.
Note: It is not unusual to see willful child endangerment criminal charges filed along with criminal storage of a firearm because the facts of a typical PC 25100 or 25110 case tend to incorporate facts that would also lead the district attorney to file willful child endangerment charges.
In addition to any jail or prison punishment, the defendant may face fines, probation terms, adverse consequences with immigration or professional licensing, and more.
Defense to PC 25100 & 25110 Crimes
The most common defense to criminal storage of a firearm offense is perhaps insufficient evidence to prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt. However, other defenses may apply depending on the facts of the case. Other defenses can include, but are limited to, mistake of fact, statute of limitations, coerced confessions, and more.
If you are charged with either a misdemeanor or felony criminal storage of a firearm crime (PC 25100 or 25110 crimes), contact our experienced and successful criminal defense attorneys today. Our criminal defense team dedicates 100% of their practice to criminal defense and initial consultations are provided at no cost. Call today!
Related Crimes to Criminal Storage of a Firearm
- Carrying Concealed Weapon PC 25400(a)(2)
- Criminal Storage of Firearm PC 25135(a)
- Criminal Storage of a firearm second degree PC 25100(b) & 25110(b)
- Criminal Storage of a firearm third degree PC 25100(c) & 25110(c)
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