Legal Question in Criminal Law in Washington

If I was arrested for 4th degree assault domestic violence in washington but it got dropped to just 4th degree assault do i fall under the lautenberg amendment? My public defender says that I can still own firearms but I also do not trust him

Asked on 7/15/10, 3:08 pm

1 Answer from Attorneys

Paul Ferris Law Office of Paul T. Ferris
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A conviction for misdemeanor assault - DV will likely result in a firearm disability under federal law regardless of whether the prosecutor and/or court agree to remove the DV tag. Federal law looks to the actual relationship between the defendant and victim, not to the "name" of the crime.

With respect the state assault statute, there are three ways to commit the crime, two of which contain the element of "force". If the charging document and/or the judgment and sentence do not specify the one method of committing assault that does not contain the element of force, you will likely be prohibited under federal law. Your only relief from a federal disability would be an unconditional governor's pardon.

But stay tuned ...... recent US Supreme Court decisions (Heller, McDonald vs. Chicago) seem to indicate the the government may not be able to prohibit gun possession entirely or indefinitely.

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7/15/10, 7:23 pm

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