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The Crime of Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon in Florida

It is a serious felony crime in Florida for a person to possess a firearm after having been convicted of a felony. That is a fairly straightforward crime, but there are other aspects of the crime that are not so obvious. It does not matter where the person obtained the felony conviction. If a person was convicted of a felony in any state, that person cannot possess a gun in Florida. Additionally, if a person was adjudicated delinquent as a juvenile and is under 24, that person cannot possess a firearm in Florida.

Possession does not just mean actual possession, i.e. holding it in one’s hand or having the gun in one’s pocket. Possession can include constructive possession of the firearm which can be established with proof that the person knew the gun was present and had dominion and control over the gun. For instance, if a person is driving his car by himself and a gun is found in the glove compartment with other items belonging to that person such as a wallet, a good argument can be made that he is in constructive possession of the firearm.

The crime of possession of a firearm is not limited to guns. Once a person has been convicted of a felony, that person cannot possess ammunition or an electric weapon or device such as a taser.

The crime of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon is very serious and can carry significant penalties. It is either a second degree felony with a potential penalty of 15 years in prison or possibly a first degree felony punishable by life in prison depending on the circumstances.