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Reckless Handling of a Firearm

Reckless Handling of a Firearm

Have you or someone you know been charged with Reckless Handling of a Firearm in violation of §18.2-56.1 in Virginia?  The charge of Reckless Handling of a Firearm is a serious charge.  The punishment depending on certain factors can lead to a Class 1 misdemeanor or a Class 6 Felony.  If you are convicted can result in a criminal record, jail time, a fine, and potentially losing your rights to hunt in Virginia.

What does Reckless Handling of a Firearm mean in Virginia?  The law states a person will be found guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor if any person, handle recklessly any firearm so as to endanger the life, limb or property of any person.  To be found guilty of the Felony the handling of the firearm must be in a manner so gross, wanton, and culpable as to show a reckless disregard for human life and causes the serious bodily injury of another person resulting in permanent and significant physical impairment.  Below you can read the language of §18.2-56.1.

As you can tell these charges are serious by their very nature.  The lawyers at Jurach, Tacey, & Quitiquit regularly handle serious criminal charges in criminal Courts around Virginia.  If you have been charged with Reckless Handling of a firearm in violation §18.2-56.1 of  contact one of the lawyers at Jurach, Tacey & Quitiquit.

To contact us, please complete this form and we’ll respond as soon as we are able.

§18.2-56.1. Reckless handling of firearms; reckless handling while hunting.

A. It shall be unlawful for any person to handle recklessly any firearm so as to endanger the life, limb or property of any person. Any person violating this section shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

A1. Any person who handles any firearm in a manner so gross, wanton, and culpable as to show a reckless disregard for human life and causes the serious bodily injury of another person resulting in permanent and significant physical impairment is guilty of a Class 6 felony.

B. If this section is violated while the person is engaged in hunting, trapping or pursuing game, the trial judge may, in addition to the penalty imposed by the jury or the court trying the case without a jury, revoke such person’s hunting or trapping license and privileges to hunt or trap while possessing a firearm for a period of one to five years.

C. Upon a revocation pursuant to subsection B hereof, the clerk of the court in which the case is tried pursuant to this section shall forthwith send to the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries (i) such person’s revoked hunting or trapping license or notice that such person’s privilege to hunt or trap while in possession of a firearm has been revoked and (ii) a notice of the length of revocation imposed. The Department shall keep a list which shall be furnished upon request to any law-enforcement officer, the attorney for the Commonwealth or court in this Commonwealth, and such list shall contain the names and addresses of all persons whose license or privilege to hunt or trap while in possession of a firearm has been revoked and the court which took such action.

D. If any person whose license to hunt and trap, or whose privilege to hunt and trap while in possession of a firearm, has been revoked pursuant to this section, thereafter hunts or traps while in possession of a firearm, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor, and, in addition to any penalty imposed by the jury or the court trying the case without a jury, the trial judge may revoke such person’s hunting or trapping license and privileges to hunt or trap while in possession of a firearm for a period of one year to life. The clerk of the court shall notify the Department of Game and Inland Fisheries as is provided in subsection C herein.


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