Officers from the Paterson Police Department were dispatched to the area of North Main and Jefferson Streets late Friday evening on the report of a group drinking alcohol and playing loud music from a vehicle. Upon arrival, officers allegedly observed an occupied vehicle playing loud music in the street. A group of individuals were gathered in front of it, and were observed to be drinking alcohol.
When they approached the vehicle, officers purportedly observed a handgun “in plain view” in the rear seat of the vehicle. The vehicle’s 2 occupants were arrested and the handgun (which was reportedly) loaded was seized. The 2 now stand charged with various weapons offenses, including Unlawful Possession of a Weapon (handgun), in violation of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-5-b(1), a crime of the Second Degree. For more information, the Paterson Times article regarding the arrest can be found here.
If convicted of Unlawful Possession of a Weapon, a crime of the Second Degree, the 2 face a term of incarceration in NJ State Prison between 5 and 10 years, with a requirement that they serve a lengthy period of parole ineligibility as per the “Graves Act,” which is the sentencing provision that applies to firearm offenses. Any issues pertaining to the legality of the seizure of the handgun could potentially impact the sentence, but would have to be litigated in Court by way of a Motion to Suppress Evidence.
If you or a loved one has been charged in the State of NJ with a weapons offense, your freedom could be at stake. Contact Alissa D. Hascup, Esq. at 862-257-1200 for a free consultation without delay. She will fight tirelessly to ensure that your rights are protected and to achieve the best possible outcome.