Indianapolis Criminal Attorney: Pointing a Firearm Charges
In Indiana, pointing a firearm at another person may be filed as a criminal offense, depending on the circumstances. If you have been accused of pointing a firearm, you need an experienced criminal defense attorney fighting for you. These charges are serious and may carry the possibility of jail time, probation or fines.
Indiana Pointing a Firearm Law and Defenses
Indiana Code 35-47-7-3 defines the crime of pointing a firearm. A person who knowingly or intentionally points a firearm at another person commits a Level 6 felony. The offense is a Class A misdemeanor if the firearm was not loaded. However, the offense does not apply to a law enforcement officer who is acting within the scope of the law enforcement officer’s official duties or to a person who is justified in using reasonable force against another person under Indiana law.
What does this all mean? It means that in Indiana, merely pointing a firearm at another person, even if the firearm is never discharged, can be charged as a felony offense (or a misdemeanor if the firearm is not loaded).
Of course, this law does not apply to a law enforcement officer who is performing his or her duties. Additionally, if a person is justified in using reasonable force (self-defense), then that is also a complete defense to the charge. So, if you would be justified in using force to protect yourself, you can also point a firearm to protect yourself. However, it is important to keep in mind that the issue of whether self-defense is a valid defense can be complicated and is a matter of law and fact that may have to be decided by a jury. Simply claiming self-defense does not necessarily end the case if the state does not believe that the defense is valid.
Chambers Law Office: Criminal Defense for Central Indiana
If you have been accused of Pointing a Firearm in Marion County or any of the surrounding communities, including Hamilton, Johnson, Hancock, Shelby, or Hendricks counties, Chambers Law Office is here to help. As a former deputy prosecutor, Julie Chambers has experience on both sides of the law and believes in providing personal and affordable legal services to all of her clients. She will take the time to answer your questions and discuss you concerns throughout the process and will work to obtain the best possible result for your case. Call 317-450-2971 to discuss your case today.