According to authorities, a 34 year-old Paterson man was arrested after firing several shots at five people. Police say that, on September 19, 2020, Julio Vasquez Larosa allegedly shot at people in a garage on Elizabeth street. The state alleges that one victim sustained gunshot wounds to his chest, arm, and leg while another suffered a wound to his abdomen. The state also alleges that surveillance footage shows Larosa walking toward the garage and he is seen brandishing a black handgun. He opens the garage and fires shots. After stepping away he returns to fire more shots at the victims. Larosa is charged with five counts of attempted murder and weapons offenses. His attorney said that the alleged victims actually taunted Larosa and threw beer bottles at him. He was detained and is being held at the Passaic County Jail. Click here to read more at www.patersontimes.com.
Possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose is a serious offense in New Jersey and penalties can be severe. Possession of a Weapon for an Unlawful Purpose is codified under N.J.S.A. 2C:39-4, which provides:
1. Any person who has in his possession any firearm with a purpose to use it unlawfully against the person or property of another is guilty of a crime of the second degree.
2. Any person who possesses, receives or transfers a community gun is guilty of a crime of the second degree and shall be sentenced to a term of imprisonment by the court. The term of imprisonment shall include the imposition of a minimum term. The minimum term shall be fixed at one-half of the sentence imposed by the court or three years, whichever is greater and during which the defendant shall be ineligible for parole. As used in this paragraph, community gun means a firearm that is transferred among, between or within any association of two or more persons who, while possessing that firearm, engage in criminal activity or use it unlawfully against the person or property of another.
Penalties for Possession of a Weapon for Unlawful Purpose:
Subsection (a) of the statute is 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 possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, you should contact a criminal defense attorney immediately because your freedom is at stake. Criminal defense lawyer Alissa D. Hascup is skilled and experienced at defending countless individuals charged with the entire range of weapons offenses. She is committed to ensuring your rights are protected and that you receive 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.