As New York Gun Lawyers we are aware that New York has a ban on possessing firearms magazines that are capable of containing more than 10 rounds. However, not everyone is as aware of the gun laws as they should be and this week two different cases in two opposite ends of New York State demonstrated how serious these cases are and how the right representation can make all of this difference in the world.
As was widely reported in the paper last week (see another article here) a former Army veteran who spent more than 9 years in the army was convicted of three felonies in Niagra County in far western New York, after he was found to be in possession of three magazines for a Glock 9mm handgun. Each of the magazines was capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition. The Army veteran did not possess any firearm, only the magazines. He is awaiting sentencing in two months according to the reports and faces up to 21 years in prison.
Meanwhile, in far Northern New York, on the same day that the veteran was convicted a man was being arrested and charged for bringing two handguns that were illegal in New York along with two high capacity ammunition feeding devices across the Canadian border in New York. This man possessed both the firearms and the high capacity magazines, also for a Glock pistol (albeit for a different model). Within a period of a week, the individual in Northern New York had the gun charges dismissed and had the high capacity magazine charges reduced to two counts of disorderly conduct. He paid fines totaling $500 a state mandated surcharge of $125 and the record of the arrest and conviction were sealed.
These two cases, which played out over the same period starkly illustrate what criminal defense lawyers already know; that there can be tremendous disparities in the way cases are handled from county to county and court to court but also the difference that can be made by hiring the right criminal defense lawyer.
Every case is an individual and we will never know why these two cases had such disparate results. The number of factors that go into the decisions being made by prosecutors and judges is probably approaching infinite. However, the decision that an individual makes in choosing the right attorney for a particular case and also have very significant and far reaching effects and also lead to very disparate results.
There are many lessons that can be learned from these two cases. Clearly, one must know the gun laws of all the states that they are travelling through with a firearm, a magazine or even a single round of ammunition. Especially when traveling in States such as New York and New Jersey. In addition, if a gun owner finds themselves charged with a weapons related offense of any kind they should endeavor to find an attorney that knows the law, knows the Courts and has a proven track record for obtaining exceptional results for their clients.