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Dublin Criminal Defense Law Blog

Some Ohio gun owners could face weapons crimes for concealment

It is permissible in Ohio to carry concealed firearms as long as the individual doing so has a valid license. Unfortunately, last year, authorities discovered that two firearms instructors here in the state allegedly falsified records that resulted in numerous gun owners receiving a concealed carry permit illegally. Some of those owners could end up facing charges for weapons crimes if they carry their weapons concealed without a valid license to do so.

Reportedly, the number of license revocations went up dramatically in 2018, and that trend may continue this year due to this situation. Evidence seems to indicate that one of the instructors no longer had the requisite qualifications to train others in the use of firearms, let alone to sign off on concealed carry licenses. One source says this affects at least 270 people while another says it affects closer to 700 people, if not more since the total number is not yet known.

Ohio accident results in OVI charges for one driver

Motor vehicle accidents most often occur due to driver error. One question that arises in many crashes is whether the mistake or series of mistakes that led to the accident warrant criminal charges. When police officers suspect something such as alcohol or drugs contributed to an accident, a driver could face charges for OVI, which is Ohio's version of driving under the influenced and stands for operating a vehicle while impaired. 

In a recent crash, responding police officers suspected one of the drivers of OVI and placed him under arrest. Preliminary reports indicate that driver failed to obey a stop sign and entered an intersection already occupied by another vehicle. The driver's vehicle struck the driver's side of the other vehicle. Reports did not indicate whether any injuries occurred, let alone whether they were serious.

An OVI can significantly impact an individual's employment

Every Ohio resident's life would sustain some form of repercussions from a conviction for drunk driving. Even so, for some people who work in certain professions, those penalties are even harsher. For instance, a police officer charged with OVI, or operating a vehicle while impaired, may not even make it to court before losing his or her job or being suspended for an indefinite amount of time.

Some officers, such as one recently in the news, may get the chance to resign before being terminated. Colleagues arrested the 27-year-old former police officer on Jan. 27 on suspicion of drunk driving and leaving the scene of an accident. Even though they were simply upholding the law, the chief of police in that city still felt the need to justify his department's actions in arresting the officer.

The right to carry a firearm could clash with weapons crimes

Most Ohio residents know that the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution allows them to keep and bear arms. Even so, the government puts restrictions on how and when residents may exercise this right. For this reason, the right to carry a firearm often clashes with established weapons crimes.

In Ohio, you can openly carry a firearm in public, but you must meet certain conditions and criteria first. If you fail to understand what those qualifications and conditions are, you could end up on the wrong side of the law. For instance, you cannot carry a weapon onto government property or into schools.

Can I have my criminal record cleared in Ohio?

When you were younger, you made a poor choice that led to a criminal conviction. You regret this mistake every day. Because of your criminal record, you have been turned down for housing, jobs and other opportunities. There is no way to turn back time, but you may be able to expunge an offense from your criminal record.

Expungement does not wipe away a crime from your past, but it does prevent employers or other members of the general public from viewing certain convictions on your record. If you qualify for this process, it could be just the fresh start that you need.

DUI/OVI field sobriety tests are optional

Every Ohio resident should know that field sobriety tests are optional. Individuals are not legally required to participate in them during a DUI/OVI traffic stop. The primary reason for this revolves around the fact that the results of these tests depend a great deal on the police officer's subjective perceptions.

It is not difficult to imagine that an officer would be less objective and more subjective when administering these tests since he or she already suspects a driver of impairment. Even the slightest perceived failure could result in an arrest. A police officer's primary objective during a DUI/OVI stop is to obtain probable cause to substantiate an arrest, which means that he or she is not looking out for the driver's best interest.

Weapons crimes and the 2nd Amendment

The Second Amendment to the U.S. Constitution guarantees the right to bear arms. Even so, there are still numerous weapons crimes for which individuals here in Ohio can face charges. You should know that being charged with a crime does not mean you will get convicted of it. But you need an attorney that knows how to provide the right defense. 

Even though the right to bear arms can be restricted under certain circumstances, the government does not always have the right to restrict your right. For instance, if you have been convicted of an offense that stripped you of your right to carry a firearm, you may have the right to get this right back. This matters for people who hunt, or otherwise believe fundamentally in the Right to Bear Arms.

As another example, the Ohio legislature is currently enacting legislation that may help you in your defense, such as the recent Stand Your Ground Law. 

If you find yourself being restricted from possessing a firearm, or believe you have acted in self defense for the crime which you are now accused, the time to take action is now. Contact Campbell Law for more information at (614) 356-8515. 

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