Weapons Offenses

Articles Posted in Weapons Offenses

Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued an interesting opinion in a Michigan gun case. The opinion implicates several areas of criminal law, including the state’s open-carry law and constitutional protections against unreasonable searches and seizures. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, the defendant was checking his oil at a gas station. As the defendant leaned over the hood of his car, officers passed by on routine patrol. As the officers glanced towards the defendant, they saw what they knew to be a handgun sticking out of the waistband of the defendant’s pants. The officers...
Posted in: Weapons Offenses
Recently, a Michigan appellate court issued an opinion stemming from a defendant’s motion to suppress evidence based on his Fourth Amendment rights to be free from unreasonable searches and seizures. In this case, the defendant was a passenger in a vehicle. The police pulled over the vehicle for having cracks in the windshield. When deputies approached the car, they noticed firearms on the floor, sitting in front of the defendant. The deputies searched the car and discovered that the gun was loaded. They also discovered heroin and cocaine behind the passenger door handle. The defendant was charged with several serious...
Recently, a state appellate court issued a written opinion in a Michigan marijuana case in which the defendant argued that the identity of the confidential informant used by law enforcement should be disclosed. Ultimately, the court concluded that the defendant was not entitled to the disclosure and affirmed the defendant’s conviction for both the distribution of marijuana as well as a firearms offense. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, police officers were tipped off by a confidential informant that the defendant was selling marijuana from his home in Pontiac, Michigan. As officers arrived at the defendant’s...
Earlier this month, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Michigan gun possession case discussing the concept of constructive possession. When someone is charged with a possessory offense, the prosecution can prove the defendant possessed the item by showing he had actual or constructive possession. Actual possession is when a person has “immediate, physical control” over an object. Constructive possession, under Michigan law, occurs “when a person is near a firearm and there is indication of his or her control of the firearm, either directly or through another person.” Thus, a person must have both knowledge of an...
Posted in: Weapons Offenses
Earlier this year, a state appellate court issued an opinion in a Michigan gun case in which the defendant challenged the officer’s search of his vehicle. Ultimately, the court concluded that the search was permissible based on the fact that the officer noticed a strong smell of marijuana, even though the defendant had a valid medical marijuana card. The Facts of the Case According to the court’s opinion, a police officer stopped the defendant for speeding. When the officer approached the defendant’s car, he noticed a strong odor of fresh marijuana, indicating to the officer that there was a “good...