A 23-year-old man from New York was recently arrested in a neighboring state and charged with weapons possession following a routine traffic stop. The police pulled the man over along, and he was arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm after they discovered a silver pistol marked "9mm" in the car.
The pistol itself is alleged to be a movie prop, but the police stated that it appeared to be real because it had gunpowder residue on it, leading police to believe that it had recently been fired.
Being charged with unlawful possession of a firearm is a serious offense. The consequences include hefty fines and lengthy jail sentences.
However, any criminal defendant is entitled to an aggressive criminal defense. He or she has the constitutional right to question the state's witnesses and the admissibility of the state's evidence. He or she also has the right to challenge the constitutionality of the police's search and seizure of his or her property in his or her house or automobile.
The defendant also has the right to question the constitutionality of the court's proceedings against him and her, and to defend his or her constitutional rights against the state's prosecution. Any defendant accused of unlawful possession of a firearm has the right to a strong, vigorous criminal defense.
In this case, the man may have a solid argument to make that the weapon is indeed a prop and not real. One would think that police would be able to tell the difference between a real and a fake gun.
Source: WallPatch.com, "NY Man Arrested on Weapons Charges Following Traffic Stop," Keith Brown, August 27, 2012