Maryland Gun Arrests
Maryland gun arrests usually occur spontaneously and are seldom the result of investigations. When a police officer interacts with a person who has a gun, often it has happened by way of a traffic stop or something similar and the officer’s main priority is going to be securing the gun and finding out if the person who has a gun is able to possess it legally. If they are not allowed to possess a firearm or, they are transporting it incorrectly, they might be arrested for committing a gun offense. If a person has been charged and arrested for a firearm offense they should speak with an experienced gun lawyer that could advocate for them.
Common Scenarios Leading to Gun Arrests
A common scenario in which someone might be arrested for a gun charge would be when someone whose vehicle has been stopped in a traffic stop, and that has led to a search of the vehicle during which time a gun was located that the defendant was not supposed to own or transport. Another common scenario is police responding to an investigation for something and upon having contact with a person, they either locate the gun or search the person and find the gun.
A lot of times people are not specifically being investigated for gun charges. It is usually a secondary issue that comes up because the person has contact with law enforcement for something else totally unrelated. Maryland gun arrests stemming from investigations are possible, and law enforcement highly prioritizes prosecuting gun crime and seizing illegal guns. There are occasions on which someone may be the target of an investigation because the police believe that they illegally possess a gun. However, in the overwhelming majority of cases, the locating and targeting of a gun is secondary to some other type of investigation.
How Does Law Enforcement Choose When to Arrest Someone?
Maryland gun arrests usually occur on site but, depending on the circumstances, it is possible that law enforcement would do an investigation first and they may be able to determine that the person is the legal owner of that firearm. An example of that might be if a person legally owns the gun but are transporting it illegally. That may be a situation in which the police would not immediately arrest that person. It is important to remember that law enforcement has two different methods by which to charge someone with crimes. They could make an on-sight arrest immediately, or they can interview people, they can do a little bit of investigation, and then they may determine that they want to go to the commissioner and file charges.
When the state files charges, it is possible that those charges could be served by way of an arrest warrant, but it is also possible that they could be served by way of a summons which would not involve an arrest. Unfortunately, what law enforcement usually comes upon is a situation in which they stop a vehicle, the driver does not tell them that there is a firearm or a handgun in the vehicle, and then the police somehow find it. For law enforcement, that is very quickly going to turn into an arrest. The opposite end of that scenario is when a person is stopped by a police officer, they have a gun in their car, and they immediately tell the officer that there is a gun in the vehicle. In fact, most gun safety and firearms instructors advise their students to do exactly that. That could be the difference between an officer being very reactive in arresting someone versus not.
Checking Firearm Serial Numbers Before an Arrest
If there is a serial number on the gun, law enforcement typically will check that because they are looking to see if it has been reported stolen. These sorts of crimes fall into just a few categories. When a person is lawfully able to have the gun and they are doing everything they are supposed to do to properly transport it and store it, et cetera, they are not going to have issues with law enforcement. Then there are the people who can lawfully possess the gun but they have transported or stored the firearm incorrectly. Those people may end up being charged with something, but they are not necessarily going to be arrested. The final category is people who have no business having a gun with them because they are prohibited or they fall under some category by which they are not allowed to have a gun. In that situation, those are typically cases in which the person is going to end up being arrested. If an individual wants to know more about Maryland gun arrests they should speak with a knowledgeable car accident lawyer that could answer their questions.