Mankato Concealed Weapons Defense Lawyer
Minnesota’s gun laws operate under a “shall-issue” policy that requires permits for carrying open and concealed weapons. It’s a crime to carry a handgun in public without a permit. There are also numerous laws that regulate the possession, carrying, and use of dangerous weapons in specific circumstances. When someone violates Minnesota gun laws, they may face harsh penalties that impede their legal right to own a gun and may permanently impact their future.
Knutson + Casey understands that people deserve second chances. Facing weapons charges may be terrifying, but that’s where we come in. Our experienced criminal defense team at Knutson + Casey will work hard to build a solid and strategic defense designed to secure the best possible results for your case. Protect yourself by working with a team that aims to achieve the best possible outcome for you.
Minnesota Open and Concealed Carry Laws
Open carry of firearms is legal in Minnesota with a permit. Minnesota law doesn’t stipulate whether the firearm must be concealed. Concealed carry is legal with a permit to carry a pistol and is only valid for handguns. The law does not apply to rifles, shotguns, or automatic weapons.
It is legal to carry a concealed handgun in a vehicle with the proper permit and license. Without a gun license, the gun must be unloaded and concealed in the vehicle’s trunk or enclosed in a gun case.
When stopped by law enforcement for a traffic offense or other type of violation, a person is not legally required to inform the officer that they are carrying a concealed weapon. However, if they are arrested for a crime with a firearm, they could face jail time and other penalties. This is why having a Mankato concealed weapons defense attorney is crucial.
When and Where Is It Illegal to Carry Concealed Weapons in Mankato, Minnesota?
Minnesota law states it’s illegal to carry guns and other weapons under specific circumstances and in specific places. Generally, restrictions on carrying guns don’t apply to law enforcement or antique guns that are kept as curiosities or historical artifacts.
Carrying a Handgun in Public Without a Permit
Individuals caught carrying a handgun without a permit (whether it’s on or near their person) may be charged with a gross misdemeanor. However, if they have a previous conviction for the same offense, then carrying a gun without a permit becomes a felony. The following must apply to obtain a handgun carrying permit:
- Be at least 21 years old
- Be a US citizen or permanent resident
- Completed handgun safety training
- Not be prohibited from having a gun under federal or Minnesota law
- Not be listed in the state’s criminal gang database
Even with a permit, it’s a misdemeanor to carry a handgun in public while intoxicated or under the influence of a controlled substance.
Illegally Carrying a Concealed Rifle in Public
Carrying a rifle, shotgun, or BB gun in public is a misdemeanor (or felony for subsequent offenders) unless the following requirements are met:
- A gun carry permit
- The firearm is unloaded and completely enclosed in a case
- On state land or waters to legally hunt or shoot
- Carrying the weapon to and from a gun shop or a place for hunting (the gun must be unloaded and kept in a closed truck or gun case if it’s in a motor vehicle)
Being charged with concealed weapons may mean facing prison time and hefty fines that create immense financial struggle.
Possession of Dangerous Weapons in Schools and Courthouse
Possession of a dangerous weapon on K-12 school property or school bus is a crime in Minnesota. Being caught with a dangerous weapon on school grounds falls under a misdemeanor if the individual has a valid hand permit, but without it, the crime becomes a felony. Individuals may also face a misdemeanor charge for having a BB gun or imitation on school property.
It’s a felony to have a dangerous weapon in a Minnesota courthouse.
Who Cannot Legally Possess a Weapon in Mankato, Minnesota?
Minnesota prohibits some individuals from possessing firearms, including those who:
- Have been convicted of a violent crime, felony, or drug crime
- Are subject to a protection order for domestic violence or domestic child abuse
- Have recently been convicted of domestic assault with a firearm
- Are in a diversion program after being charged with a violent crime
- Illegal drug user
- Have been committed for chemical dependency treatment and haven’t completed treatment
- Have been committed after being found mentally ill or developmentally disabled, making them a danger to the public
- Are in the US illegally
- Were dishonorably discharged from the US military
Minors are prohibited from having handguns or semiautomatic assault weapons unless they complete a safety and marksmanship course or are under proper supervision. Penalties for violating Minnesota gun possession laws range from gross misdemeanors to felonies for those with prior convictions.
Weapons Charges May Exacerbate Other Charges
Weapons charges are serious in Minnesota, and those related to carrying a concealed weapon are no exception. Unless you work in a highly specified field, you must have a permit to carry a gun in public. Furthermore, a weapons charge may increase the severity of other charges against you. For example, the charges and penalties significantly increase if a gun is present during a drug sale.
If you’re facing harsh penalties because of assault charges, robbery, or other crimes, the addition of a weapon will likely lead to additional or higher charges.
Contact Our Experienced Mankato Concealed Weapons Defense Lawyer
At Knutson + Casey, our Mankato concealed weapons defense attorneys pride ourselves on committing to protecting our client’s rights, reducing or eliminating their charges, and providing them with knowledgeable legal advice. Even in situations where a conviction seems to be the only outcome, it may still be possible to reduce charges or even get them dropped. When it’s about your rights and freedom, the fight is always worth it.
The end goal at Knutson + Casey is to achieve the best possible results for our clients. Our Mankato concealed weapons defense lawyers know the impact that a weapons charge may have on someone’s life and have the resources to help our clients make informed decisions on their cases. We’ve helped thousands of individuals across Southern Minnesota, and we want to help you, too. Learn more about your rights and how we may help by completing our contact form or calling (507) 344-8888.