California’s Ten-Year Firearm Possession Prohibition

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California’s Ten Year Firearm Possession Prohibition For Domestic Violence and Other Designated Convictions.

California Penal Code Section 29805 reads as Follows:

“Except as provided in Section 29855 or subdivision (a) of Section 29800, any person who has been convicted of a misdemeanor violation of Section 71, 76, 136.1, 136.5, or 140, subdivision (d) of Section 148, Section 171b, paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 171c, 171d, 186.28, 240, 241, 242, 243, 243.4, 244.5, 245, 245.5, 246.3, 247, PC 273.5 273.6, 417, 417.6, 422, 626.9, 646.9, or 830.95, subdivision (a) of former Section 12100, as that section read at any time from when it was enacted by Section 3 of Chapter 1386 of the Statutes of 1988 to when it was repealed by Section 18 of Chapter 23 of the Statutes of 1994, Section 17500, 17510, 25300, 25800, 30315, or 32625, subdivision (b) or (d) of Section 26100, or Section 27510, or Section 8100, 8101, or 8103 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, any firearm-related offense pursuant to Sections 871.5 and 1001.5 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, Section 490.2 if the property taken was a firearm, or of the conduct punished in subdivision (c) of Section 27590, and who, within 10 years of the conviction, owns, purchases, receives, or has in possession or under custody or control, any firearm is guilty of a public offense, which shall be punishable by imprisonment in a county jail not exceeding one year or in the state prison, by a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars ($1,000), or by both that imprisonment and fine. The court, on forms prescribed by the Department of Justice, shall notify the department of persons subject to this section. However, the prohibition in this section may be reduced, eliminated, or conditioned as provided in Section 29855 or 29860.”

What Types of Convictions Trigger This Firearm Prohibition

The charges that trigger this firearm prohibition range from various weapons charges, assault charges, battery charges (including domestic violence charges), and various intimidation, threat, or harassment type charges.
Many of the charges listed in this statute are fairly obscure. The most commonly encountered charges are:

Battery  (PC 242 and 243)
Domestic Battery  (PC 243(e)(1)
Assault wit a Deadly Weapon  (PC 245(a)(1))
Criminal Threats  (PC 422)
Intentional Infliction of Injury on a Spouse or Cohabitant ( PC 273.5 )

Breadth of the Statute

This is a broad statute that criminalizes much more than just possession of a firearm. For example, if someone who was previously convicted of one of the “triggering offenses” simply purchases a firearm, they have violated this law, even if they never take possession of the firearm. Likewise, owning a firearm, even if it is out of your possession is a technical violation of this law. For example, if someone owns a gun, but sends it with a friend to hold for 10 years, as they know they have been convicted of a “triggering offense,” has still a violated the law as they still “own” a firearm.

Penalties for Violation of California Penal Code 29805

This statute makes its illegal to own, purchase, receive, or possess a firearm if you have previously been convicted of one of the listed charges.  A violation of this statute is a “wobbler” as it can be a misdemeanor or a felony.  The potential penalties range from fines to jail or even prison.

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