Possession of an Illegal Weapon
Tennessee law declares that certain weapons are illegal for the vast majority of its citizens. For example, most citizens may not own a machine gun or a pair of brass knuckles. These are considered “illegal weapons.” Possession of such a weapon can lead to an arrest and even felony criminal charges. If you face charges for possession of an illegal weapon, Nashville-based gun lawyer Philip Clark can assist you in fighting these criminal charges. He handles such cases in Nashville and surrounding counties in Middle Tennessee.
Tennessee Law on Possession of an Illegal Weapon
Tennessee law on illegal weapons lists several prohibited types: an explosive or explosive weapon, a device principally used to design or launch an explosive weapon, a machine gun, a “hoax device”, knuckles, or “[a]ny other implement for infliction of serious bodily injury or death that has no common lawful purpose.”
Possession of an explosive or explosive weapon is a Class B felony. Possession of a device designed to spring an explosive or possession of a machine gun is a Class E felony. Possession of a hoax device is a Class C felony. Possession of knuckles or some other weapon not used for lawful purposes is a Class A misdemeanor.
Defenses under the Statute
There are numerous defenses built into the Tennessee statute on possession of an illegal weapon. One such defense is that the person charged was using the weapon in the performance of official duties for the military or law enforcement. Another defense is that the person with the weapon was engaging in a lawful business or commercial transaction. A third statutory defense is that the person charged with possession of an explosive or explosive device was using for a lawful industrial purpose. A fourth defense in the statute was that the use of the illegal weapon was incident to use for a “lawful dramatic performance or scientific research.” The fifth statutory defense is that the possession of the illegal weapon was incident to its display in a public museum. The sixth statutory defense is that the person charged was “licensed by the state of Tennessee as a manufacturer, importer or dealer in weapons.”
Additionally, the law on illegal possession of a weapon has an affirmative defense as well. An affirmative defense is one where the defendant has the burden of proof. The affirmative defense provides that if a defendant can prove that the weapon in question is “relative to dealing with the weapon solely as a curio, ornament or keepsake.”
Need for an Attorney
Needless to say, if you are charged with possession of an illegal weapon, then you need an experienced criminal defense attorney. An experienced criminal defense attorney is necessary for you to fight these charges effectively. The attorney may be able to assert one of the many defenses built into the statute. He may be able to show that the possession of the firearm was lawful.
Nashville-based attorney Philip N. Clark of PNC Law is just such an experienced attorney. He is a zealous advocate on behalf of his clients. Furthermore, he has nearly twenty (20) years of experience as a former Metro police officer. He may be able to assert a variety of defenses on your behalf. If you face charges for the illegal possession of a firearm, contact Nashville-based weapons attorney Philip Clark at (615) 678-1033 or e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(a)(1)-(7).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(f)(1)
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(f)(2).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(f)(3).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(f)(4).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(1).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(2).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(3).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(4).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(5).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1302(b)(6).
 Tenn. Code Ann. §39-17-1303(c).