Using a Firearm to Commit a Crime
Using a firearm to commit a felony, compounds the issue considerably. The charge of using a firearm to commit a crime is in itself a separate charge with accompanying penalties.
For example, if you hold up a store using a gun, you can be charged with felonious assault, by threatening the lives of others, robbery for the crime of robbing the store and then also felony firearm because you were in possession of a gun at the time. Ironically it does not matter if the firearm was loaded or working or not.
Even a lesser crime of selling drugs while in possession of a firearm still qualifies you to be charged with a felony firearm offense.
The government has set very severe penalties for the use of firearms during a crime. This is to discourage the public from purchasing and owning them. The belief is that guns significantly expose the public to more danger.
According to U.S. crime statistics, a huge percentage of violent and non-violent crimes are committed using a firearm. Most homicides committed in the United States are executed using a firearm, specifically handguns. Gun-related murders are most often associated with gangs and gang-related activities.
However, one encouraging note is that lawful gun owners, commit less than one-fifth of all gun-related crimes. This statistic is something that pro-gun advocacy groups have been saying for many years. Most guns used in crimes have been stolen from rightful owners. However, it is unclear how these guns are stolen and from where.
The penalties for using a firearm to commit crimes are very serious, as it threatens the lives and safety of others. A first offense carries a mandatory 2-year prison term. If it is your second offense, you will go to jail for five years, and if it is your third offense, you will go to federal prison for ten years without the option of probation or parole. Additionally, these jail terms must be served consecutively to other sentences, which could add up to a lifetime in prison.