Passaic City man Arrested in Possession of Handgun

According to authorities, a man was arrested in Paterson on Tuesday morning on gun charges. Police allege that 26 year-old Richard Burke of Passaic City was the backseat passenger of a Toyota Camry that was pulled over on River Street and 3rdAve in the morning around 4:45am. Burke was allegedly observed to be drinking from a bottle of Hennessy. He was also allegedly attempting to hide a fanny pack by pushing it under the driver’s seat with his feet. He was taken out of the vehicle and searched. When officers shined a light into the car, they were able to observe a handgun handle sticking out of the fanny pack. The handgun was an unregistered black Smith and Wesson revolver model 38 special ctg with a wooden handle. It was loaded with six .38 caliber rounds. Burke was charged because he was the one attempting to conceal it. Click here to read more at

The State of New Jersey takes gun charges very seriously and penalties can be severe. Unlawful Possession of a Weapon is codified under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5, which provides:

b. Handguns. Any person who knowingly has in his possession any handgun, including any antique handgun, without first having obtained a permit to carry the same is guilty of a crime of the third degree if the handgun is in the nature of an air gun, spring gun or pistol or other weapon of a similar nature in which the propelling force is a spring, elastic band, carbon dioxide, compressed or other gas or vapor, air or compressed air, or is ignited by compressed air, and ejecting a bullet or missile smaller than three-eighths of an inch in diameter, with sufficient force to injure a person. Otherwise it is a crime of the second degree which is punishable by a prison term of between 5 and 10 years in New Jersey State Prison.

A crime of the third degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to 5 years in New Jersey State Prison.

A crime of the fourth degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment of up to 18 months in New Jersey State Prison.

If you or a loved one is charged with unlawful possession of a weapon, you should contact  an attorney immediately. Criminal defense lawyer, Alissa D. Hascup has successfully defended countless individuals charged with the entire range of weapons offenses throughout the state of New Jersey. She is committed to ensuring your rights are protected in court. Don’t risk your freedom. Contact her office for a free consultation about your case. She is available 24/7 at 862-257-1200.