Possession of Firearm by Convicted Felon in Livingston Parish, Louisiana



The illegal possession of a firearm in Livingston Parish is a very serious crime. However, if you are a convicted felon and are then charged with illegal possession of a firearm, the crime and punishments are even more severe and will threaten your freedom for a long time to come. If you or someone you know has recently been charged with illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, it is highly recommended that you seek legal help immediately. This is where Carl Barkemeyer comes in to help. He is a very experienced criminal defense attorney in the Livingston Parish area and has represented many clients in the same situation as you. With the right preparation and knowledge, a more ideal outcome for your case can become a likely scenario with the help from our law offices.


Why are Felon in Possession of Firearm Charges So Serious?


The charge of felon in possession of firearms or guns is serious because the penalties for it are very severe, especially in the state of Louisiana. If you are found guilty, the following punishments can be forced upon you: imprisoned at hard labor for 5-20 years without the benefit of probation, parole, or suspension of sentence and a fine of not less than $1,000 nor more than $5,000. In essence, this means the person convicted cannot apply for probation or parole and must serve all the years in prison. If convicted, you must do at minimum 5 years in prison which is a very long time and can have a devastating effect on your life. The judge will consider all the facts and circumstances surrounding the gun charge to determine the amount of time to give the defendant.


These determinations by the judge can include different circumstances like how long the defendant has been off of probation or parole for the underlying felony.  The judge may also consider what the underlying felony was and the number of prior felony convictions. The judge will want to know if the defendant was involved in drug dealing activities during the new arrest in which the firearm was found. All these issues may influence the judge’s sentence and can add even more time onto the potential jail time you face.


Which Felons Can’t Possess a Firearm?


According to Louisiana law, not every convicted felon is banned from possessing a firearm. Federal law is different though, which states that no convicted felon may be in possession of a firearm. If convicted of the following types of offenses, the individual cannot possess a firearm in the state of Louisiana or Livingston Parish:

●          felony crime of violence

●          simple burglary

●          burglary of a pharmacy

●          burglary of an inhabited dwelling

●          unauthorized entry of an inhabited dwelling

●          felony illegal use of weapons or dangerous instrumentalities

●          manufacture or possession of a delayed action incendiary device

●          manufacture or possession of a bomb

●          possession of a firearm while in the possession of or during the sale or distribution of a controlled dangerous substance

●          felony drug charge

●          any sex offense listed in R.S. 15:541

●          any crime defined as an attempt to commit one of the crimes above

●          domestic abuse charges listed in 14:95.10


How long does a convicted felon need to wait before possessing a firearm again?


If you have been convicted of one of the felonies above, you cannot own and possess a firearm again until 10 years after you have completed the sentence for the previous felony. For example, if you were convicted and charged with 2 years of probation for cocaine charges on January 1, 2020, then you can’t possess a firearm until 10 years after January 1, 2022. However, this time period only applies to Louisiana law, because as stated earlier, federal law does not have a cleansing period and once you are a convicted felon federally, then you may not possess another firearm again.


What Types of Firearm Cannot be Possessed by a Convicted Felon?


According to the legislature, the following weapons cannot be possessed by a person with certain felony convictions:

●          Pistol

●          Revolver

●          Rifle

●          Shotgun

●          machine gun

●          submachine gun

●          black powder weapon

●          assault rifle which is designed to fire or is capable of firing fixed cartridge ammunition or from which a shot or projectile is discharged by an explosive


How to defend the charges of felon in possession of a firearm?


The first defense tactic that we can take is determining whether the prosecutor can prove the defendant was convicted of the prior felony and what that felony was. In some rare cases, it could end up being a felony conviction that is not listed above, which means they would not fall under the pretenses of the felon in possession of a firearm law. If this isn’t successful, the next defense we would look towards is the actual possession of the firearm. The possession must b knowing and intentional and the defendant must have dominion of control over that firearm. The state of Louisiana must be able to prove that the weapon was in fact in your possession and that you know it was in your possession, which sometimes can be hard to prove. All of these defenses require a lot of evidence to hold up so every case is handled differently but alternatives can almost always be an option.


How can we help?


If you have recently been convicted of a felon in possession of a firearm charge in Livingston Parish or Denham Springs, Louisiana, then we highly recommend you to contact us. Carl Barkemeyer is a very experienced criminal defense attorney and has represented many clients that are charged in these type of cases. We will try our best to aid you in your case so that your future isn’t negatively impacted by a felon in possession of a firearm charge. For legal assistance in this area, contact us at 225-964-6720.

"Great attorney - very detailed and knowledgeable.
I will recommend him to anyone and if needed I'd consult with him again.!"