Felony Gun Possession — Misconduct Involving Weapons

Felony gun possession or more commonly referred to as misconduct involving weapons (MIW) in Arizona is defined by A.R.S. § 13-3102. Felony gun possession is a serious crime with varying consequences. While the most common way to commit misconduct involving weapons involves felony gun possession by a prohibited possessor, there are several other ways in which to commit the offense which involve prohibitions on the possession or transfer of a deadly weapon.

Felony Gun Possession A.R.S. § 13-3102

Felony Gun Possession (MIW)

Depending on the circumstances, most felony gun possession charges are obviously felonies under Arizona law — though some are misdemeanors. The precise level of felony that a felony gun possession offense is charged as depends on the facts of the case, the type of weapon and the status of the individual accused. A.R.S. § 13-3102 contains a lengthy list of activities under the heading of misconduct involving weapons.

Class 2 Felony

  • Possessing a deadly weapon in furtherance of an act of terrorism.

Class 3 Felony

  • Firing a firearm at an occupied structure in furtherance of a street gang;
  • Selling Weapons to promote the interests of a criminal street gang or criminal syndicate;
  • Providing a deadly weapon to another person if the person knows that other person will use the weapon to commit a felony offense.

Class 4 Felony

  • Manufacturing, possessing, transporting, selling or transferring a prohibited weapon;
  • Possessing a deadly weapon or prohibited weapon if such person is a prohibited possessor;
  • Using or possessing a deadly weapon during the commission of any felony offense;
  • Entering a nuclear or hydroelectric generating station carrying a deadly weapon.

Class 6 Felony

  • Possessing a deadly weapon in the furtherance of a serious offense, a violent crime or any other felony offense;
  • Selling or transferring a deadly weapon to a prohibited possessor;
  • Defacing a deadly weapon;
  • Possessing a defaced deadly weapon knowing the deadly weapon was defaced;
  • Possessing a deadly weapon on school grounds while in possession or while selling drugs;
  • Possessing a deadly weapon on school grounds while hiring or attempting to hire a minor to engage for certain enumerated felonies.

Misdemeanor Gun Possession (MIW)

While many violations of this statute constitute a felony in Arizona, others are only misdemeanor violations. Pursuant to A.R.S. § 13-3102, the following offenses are misdemeanor gun and weapon possession offenses under Arizona law.

Class 1 misdemeanor

  • Simple possession of a deadly weapon on school grounds;
  • Failing to accurately answer a law enforcement officer when asked if a person is in possession of a concealed deadly weapon;
  • Entering a public establishment with a concealed deadly weapon after a request by the operator of the establishment not to possess weapons on the premise.

Class 3 Misdemeanor

  • Carrying a concealed deadly weapon by anyone under the age of 21.

 Felony Gun Possession Sentence

The extent of a felony gun possession sentence that a person may face depends on the charges and the facts. It is also important to note that the most common form of felony gun possession occurs when a person is in possession as a prohibited possessor. In these cases, probation is often no longer available, and the person may be facing a much longer felony gun possession sentence.

Class 2 Felony

  • Probation; or
  • Between 3 and a maximum of 12.5 years in prison.

Class 3 Felony

  • Probation; or
  • Between 2 and a maximum of 8.5 years in prison.

Class 4 Felony

  • Probation; or
  • Between 1 and a maximum of 3.75 years in prison.

Class 6 Felony

  • Probation; or
  • Between four months and a maximum of 2 years in prison.

Class 1 Misdemeanor

  • Probation; or
  • Between 0 and 6 months in jail.

Class 3 Misdemeanor

  • Probation; or
  • Between 0 and 30 days in jail.

A.R.S. § 13-3102

Prohibited Weapon Defined

In addition to it being illegal to possess a firearm under certain circumstances by certain people under A.R.S. § 13-3102, certain items are banned entirely under Arizona law. These items are known as prohibited weapons and manufacturing, possessing, transporting, selling or transferring them constitutes a Class 4 Felony under Arizona law. Pursuant to A.R.S. § 13-3101(A)(8) prohibited weapon include any of the following:

  • Bombs, grenades, RPGs, incendiary or poison gas;
  • Muffler or silencer;
  • Fully automatic weapons;
  • A rifle with a barrel length less than 16 inches;
  • A shotgun with a barrel less than 18 inches;
  • Any firearm that is made from a rifle or shotgun and that, as modified, has an overall length of less than 26 inches;
  • Nunchaku (nunchucks);
  • Molotov cocktails;
  • Dry ice bombs;
  • IEDs

Prohibited Possessor

Prohibited Possessor Defined

Pursuant to ARS § 13-3101(A)(7) prohibited possessor means any person:

  • Who has been convicted of a felony and whose civil right to possess or carry a gun or firearm has not been restored;
  • On probation pursuant to a conviction for a domestic violence offense, felony offense, parole, community supervision, work furlough, home arrest or release on any other basis;
  • Any undocumented alien or a nonimmigrant alien traveling with or without documentation unless they meet certain limited exceptions;
  • Who has been legally been found to constitute a danger to self or to and whose right to possess a firearm has not been restored pursuant to A.R.S. § 13-925;
  • Serving a term of imprisonment in any correctional or detention facility;
  • Who has been found incompetent pursuant to Rule 11 and who subsequently has not been found competent;
  • Who is found guilty except insane (GEI).

Deadly Weapon Defined

A deadly weapon as defined by A.R.S. § 13-3101(A)(1) means any weapon designed for lethal use, with the exception of a pocketknife.

Deface Defined

Deface pursuant to A.R.S. § 13-3101(A)(2) means to remove, alter or destroy the manufacturer’s serial number

A.R.S. § 13-3102 Lawyer

Phoenix Felony Gun Possession Lawyers

If you are facing a charge felony gun possession, or if you have been arrested for any offense where a weapon was allegedly involved, the consequences could be serious. Many weapons crimes are felonies, and some carry mandatory prison terms. Prosecutors are aggressive when it comes to weapons crimes.

If you have been arrested on a weapons charge, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney handling your case. Remember that you are innocent until proven guilty. At Feldman & Royle, our attorneys have experience representing clients charged with major felonies, and we have a track record of success involving even the most serious crimes. We offer a free and confidential consultation.