Why Am I Being Charged for Gun Possession? Isn’t Texas an Open Carry State?

judgegavelincourtwithgunAs of January 1, 2016, Texas is an open-carry state. Texas has a reputation for fairly lax gun laws, but that doesn’t mean that you can just walk around with a gun on display. There are a variety of crimes you can be charged with if you have a gun, including illegal possession or carry, improper discharge or using a gun in the commission of a crime.

Open-Carry in Texas

Many Texans take the term open-carry for granted, without realizing that you cannot open-carry unless you have a license to carry a handgun. There are very limited circumstances where you are allowed to openly carry a handgun without a license. For example, you are legally allowed to carry a weapon to your car to transport it, as well as when you are at a place you control such as your home or your place of business.

If you are caught carrying a weapon illegally, you will be charged with a Class A misdemeanor, unless you are carrying in a school, a polling place during an election, a court, a racetrack or anywhere that is licensed to sell alcohol. Illegal possession in those places elevates the crime to a third-degree felony. Additionally, even if you do have a license to carry, you are still not legally allowed to carry in churches, hospitals, amusement parks, sporting events or government meetings.

Criminal defense attorneys helping clients charged with gun possession in the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, including Allen, Arlington, Carrollton, Denton, Fort Worth, Irving, McKinney and Plano.

 



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