Gun Crimes in Texas
Texas has some of the most liberal gun laws in the country; there is actually no age requirement for possessing a gun. Right-to-arms advocates love to point out that despite this, Texas has a much lower number of gun-related homicides in the country (65%) than states where gun laws are much more stringent such as California at 69%, Michigan at 76%, and Illinois at a whopping 86%. However, just because Texas is gun-friendly doesn’t mean there are no gun crimes that can be slapped against a clueless resident.
Under Texas law, gun owners are typically not allowed to carry their guns outside their own premises unless it is a rifle or shot gun. A person with a license to carry a concealed weapon may legally bring a handgun off their private premises except when:
- On certain premises (amusement park, religious worship, medical care facilities, nursing homes, and any meeting place by a government agency) with the proper warning signage as stipulated under Texas Penal Code §30.06
- Within 1000 feet of a correctional facility where an execution has been scheduled
- At polling places during elections
- At any racetrack
- Attending an interscholastic event except when the event involves handguns (shooting competitions)
- Inside a school or education building or transport vehicle
- At any bar or restaurant that derives more than 50% of its income from selling alcoholic beverages
- In secured areas of any airport except if the weapon is packaged and encased as check in baggage subject to regulations
A violation of any of these conditions constitutes a gun crime and carries stiff penalties. Nevertheless, according to the website of Inglis Defense, if you are charged with a gun crime in Texas, don’t think that friendly gun laws mean you are going to get off easily, even if you had no intention of doing harm to anyone or didn’t know you were violating any laws. Ignorance of the law is not a defense. You need to consult with competent gun crime lawyers practicing in the area to get you out of this type of sticky situation.