Paterson man Arrested with Loaded Rifle

According to authorities, a Paterson man was arrested with a loaded rifle. Public Safety Director, Jerry Speziale, reported that Kwame Morrison was sleeping inside a red 2020 Honda Accord LX with a temporary plate which was double parked with the engine off and headlights on at 6:30 in the morning. When officers approached the vehicle on Warren Street, and knocked on the windows to wake him up, he was unresponsive at first. 

Eventually, an officer gained access through the driver side door to make contact with him. The officers advised the man that they were doing a welfare check on him. Morrison allegedly told officers he was taking a nap in front of his girlfriend’s house. When police asked for identification and for him to step out of the vehicle, he refused and was allegedly hunched over with his hands in his pocket.

When Morrison tried to stand up, police allegedly saw the muzzle of a gun and ordered him to show his hands and not move. He did not comply. Instead, he attempted to place his hands on the weapon and began to lift up his hoodie. Police recovered the weapon by cutting the sling from around Morrison’s shoulder. The weapon was a Mossberg International 715P .22 caliber pistol grip rifle and was loaded with 23 rounds. He was charged with unlawful possession of a weapon and possession of a prohibited weapon. Click here to read more at

The state of New Jersey takes unlawful possession of a weapon cases seriously and penalties can be severe. Subsections (a), (b), and (c) of the statute are subject to sentencing under the Graves Act, meaning that an individual convicted of such an offense must be sentenced to a term of imprisonment with a minimum term of parole ineligibility fixed at, or between, one-third to one-half of a sentence imposed, or 3 years, whichever is greater.

A crime of the second degree is punishable by a term of imprisonment 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 a criminal defense attorney immediately. Alissa D. Hascup is skilled and experienced at defending countless individuals who are charged with weapons offenses throughout the state of New Jersey. She is committed to ensuring your rights are protected in court and you get the best possible outcome for your case. Contact her office for a free consultation about your case. She is available 24/7 at 862-257-1200.