Keeping Your Gun After a Domestic Violence Conviction

In california, a law enforcement officer can lose his or her job if he or she is convicted of a crime and cannot legally possess a firearm.  However, there are ways to avois the loss of the right to possess a gun.  A peace officer, as described in Pen C §§830.1–830.2, 830.31– 830.33, and 830.5, convicted of domestic violence under Pen C §273.5, §273.6 or §646.9, can petition the court only once for relief from the firearm prohibition if that officer’s employment or livelihood is dependent on the ability to legally possess a firearm.

The procedure is as follows (Pen C §12021(c)(2)):

(1) The petition must be filed in the court where the petitioner was sentenced and, if possible, heard by the same judge that sentenced the petitioner.

(2) The clerk shall set a hearing date and notify the petitioner and prosecuting attorney.

(3) The court may reduce or eliminate the prohibition, impose conditions on reducing or eliminating the prohibition, or otherwise grant relief as deemed appropriate by the court after making each of the following findings:

(a) The court must determine whether the petitioner, by a preponderance of the evidence, is likely to use a firearm in a safe and lawful manner

(b) The court must determine whether or not the petitioner is within a prohibited class as specified in Pen C §12021.1(a)–(b), (d)–(e), (g), and the court has not been presented with credible evidence that the petitioner is prohibited due to mental health issues as described in Welf & I C §8100 or §8103. Pen C §12021(c)(2)(B).
(c) The petitioner does not have a previous Pen C §12021(c) conviction no matter when the prior conviction occurred. Pen C §12021(c)(2)(C).

According to one Los Angeles Criminal Defense Attorney, the court shall consider the petitioner’s continued employment, the interests of justice, any relevant evidence, and the totality of the circumstances. The court shall require, as a condition of granting relief, that the petitioner agree to participate in counseling as deemed appropriate by the court.

About thetorranceattorney

Matthew Ruff is a Torrance criminal defense attorney located near the 405 freeway on Crenshaw Blvd. Focusing on DUI and serious criminal cases for over twenty five years. In addition to criminal cases, Matthew also defends clients at the DMV regarding license suspension hearings stemming from drunk driving arrests.
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