Unlawful Possession of Weapons by Person under Sixteen

New York State Penal Code § 265.05 states that it is unlawful for a person under the age of 16 to possess any air-gun, spring-gun, or other instrument or weapon in which the propelling force is a spring or air. Moreover, it is unlawful for a person under 16 to possess any gun, instrument, or weapon in or upon which any loaded or blank cartridges may be used, or any loaded or blank cartridges or ammunition thereof, or any dangerous knife; provided that the possession of the rifle or shotgun or ammunition thereof is by the holder of a hunting licenses or a permit issues by article 11 of the Environmental Conservation Act, and used in accordance with that Statute.

Any person who is found guilty of violating NY Penal Code § 265.05 will be considered a juvenile delinquent. Cases involving minors are usually adjudicated in the New York juvenile justice system, and require the help of an experienced attorney.

An early criminal record can affect a minor's career as well as his or her educational opportunities. Not to mention, if convicted, a juvenile delinquent could spend time in a juvenile detention center, or prison for more serious criminal offenses.

Attorney for Unlawful Possession of Weapons by a Person under Sixteen in New York

If your child has been charged with the unlawful possession of a weapon, it is imperative that you contact a criminal defense attorney with experience defending juveniles in the New York City Department of Juvenile Justice.

Rochelle Berliner knows how confusing and disorienting it is to deal with criminal charges, especially for a minor. Law Office will represent you at every step of the way, from the initial appearance to the final resolution of the case. If you need attorney in Queens County, Brooklyn, Manhattan, or in the Bronx, Law Office can represent you.

Do not let your child's future be impacted by a criminal conviction. Contact Law Office at today for a consultation.

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Effects of Being Adjudged Delinquent

The punishment for violating NY Penal Law § 265.05 is that the offender, if found guilty, will be adjudged “delinquent.” A person who commits an act that would otherwise be considered a crime if the person were an adult, would be adjudged delinquent in Family Court.

Juvenile delinquency is considered a finding, not a conviction. While a child who has been adjudged delinquent for violating NY § 265.05 will not be required to submit to fingerprinting, other, more violent, crimes could subject a child to fingerprinting.

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Unlawful Possession of a Weapon at School

With the numerous school shootings and debate about the appropriate response to gun violence in our sacred areas like schools and places of worship, it is important to understand New York law on where an individual may lawfully possess a firearm or firearm-like weapon.

New York Statute § 265.06, states that it is unlawful for a person 16 or older to knowingly possess an air gun, spring-gun, or any other propelling force instrument, such as a firearm upon school grounds. School grounds consist of any school or college or university.

When the weapon involved is a knife, it is imperative for the court to find it a "dangerous" knife. Being in possession of a knife is not a crime, but if the minor is in possession of a machete or a dagger, then he or she could be found guilty of unlawful possession of a weapon.

Importantly, the Unlawful Possession of a Weapon Upon School Grounds in violation of NY Penal Law § 265.06 is punishable as a “violation,” rather than a crime. The punishment for such violation is up to 15 days in jail.

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The Juvenile Offender in New York City

Although relatively rare, a child who is accused of a serious crime could have their case transferred out of juvenile court and into adult court. If the juvenile is 13 years old or older and is arrested for serious offenses like homicide or aggravated assault, then the case is reviewed by the District Attorney's office in the borough in which the crime allegedly occurred.

The district attorney's office will then decide whether sufficient evidence exist to support filing the juvenile offender (JO) charges in adult court. If so, the juvenile's case is transferred to the Supreme Court (adult criminal court) in that borough in New York City.

Most charges for the unlawful possession of weapon by a person under 16 will be adjudged in a juvenile court. Though, if coupled with other charges, such as robbery or criminal possession of a weapon, then the defendant could face more severe punishments.

If a juvenile is found guilty in adult court, then he or she will be designated as a "juvenile offender." The court will then impose more serious penalties than those possible for the sentencing of a child designated as a "juvenile delinquent."

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Additional Resources

New York State Law | Article 265 – Visit this informative website for a consolidated laws of New York's Penal Code to learn more about firearm and weapon charges and the penalties associated with each conviction.

NYC Administration for Children's Services | Juvenile Justice – The New York Department of Juvenile Justice (DOJJ) was created in 1979 to provide secure and non-secure detention for alleged Juvenile Offenders (JOs) whose cases are pending, along with post-adjudicated juveniles awaiting transfer to state facilities. While in detention, juveniles receive education, health services, recreation, and case management.

Know Your Rights – Visit the Legal Action Center to find the article “Know Your Rights: Understanding Juvenile and Criminal Records and Their Impact on Employment in New York.” The article discusses the difference between being adjudged delinquent as a juvenile, being considered a “juvenile offender,” and a “youthful offender.” This great resource also explains the effects that each of these designations can have on a child’s future as he or she attempts to obtain employment, housing, or other endeavors that require a background check.

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Find an Attorney for Unlawful Possession of Weapons by a Person under 16 in Queens, New York

Law Office has built a reputation in the New York City area as a firm that is committed to protecting the rights of their clients. A serious criminal charge can change a person's life. If your child is facing a jail time, be it in an adult court or a juvenile court, it is imperative to find legal representation.

Fight those charges with a knowledgeable attorney with years of experience dealing with juvenile courts. If you are located in New York in Queens County, New York County, Bronx County, or Kings County, Law Office will heed the call.

Contact Law Office today at to discuss your case, and the steps you will need to take going forward.

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