Firearms rights prohibitions

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There are misdemeanors and other events which can make a person prohibited from owning/possessing firearms, either for a specified time or permanently. Among these can be psychiatric events and restraining orders; if one is afflicted with this problem, one needs his or her personal lawyer immediately.

As a consequence of this possible prohibition, the California Department of Justice established its Armed Prohibited Persons program. In a 2002 press release, DOJ said

The "Armed and Prohibited" program was created by SB 950, sponsored by
the Attorney General and the California State Sheriffs Association and
authored by Sen. Jim Brulte, R-Rancho Cucamonga. Signed by Gov. Gray
Davis last year, the bill went into effect July 1, 2002. 
...
The Department of Justice plans to create a database to automatically
cross-reference the names of individuals owning guns with court
convictions, domestic violence restraining orders and records of
individuals deemed a danger to themselves or others. Lockyer estimates
that such a database would initially contain 170,000 names, and that
17,000 will be added each year.

Contents

Firearms Rights Prohibitions

The California Department of Justice has a thorough list of crimes which will ordinarily result in restricting firearms rights: Firearms Prohibiting Categories and List of Prohibiting Misdemeanors, reproduced below.

Note: The Department of Justice provides this document for informational purposes only. This list may not be inclusive of all firearms prohibitions. For specific legal advice, please consult with an attorney licensed to practice law in California.

FIREARMS PROHIBITING CATEGORIES

State and federal law make it unlawful for certain persons to own and/or possess firearms, including:

  • Any person who is convicted of a felony, or any offense enumerated in Section 12021.1 of the Penal Code
  • Any person who is ordered to not possess firearms as a condition of probation or other court order
  • Any person who is convicted of a misdemeanor listed in Section 12021(c)(1) of the Penal Code (refer to List of Prohibiting Misdemeanors)
  • Any person who is adjudged a ward of the juvenile court because he or she committed an offense listed in 707(b) of the Welfare and Institutions Code (WIC), an offense described in Section 1203.073(b), or any offense enumerated in Section 12021(c)(1)
  • Any person who is subject to a temporary restraining order or an injunction issued pursuant to Section 527.6 or 527.8 of the Code of Civil Procedure, a protective order as defined in Section 6218 of the Family Code, a protective order issued pursuant to Section 136.2 or 646.91 of the Penal Code, or a protective order issued pursuant to WIC Section 15657.03
  • Any person who is found by a court to be a danger to himself, herself, or others because of a mental illness
  • Any person who is found by a court to be mentally incompetent to stand trial
  • Any person who is found by a court to be not guilty by reason of insanity
  • Any person who is adjudicated to be a mentally disordered sex offender
  • Any person who is placed on a conservatorship because he or she is gravely disabled as a result of a mental disorder, or an impairment by chronic alcoholism
  • Any person who communicates a threat to a licensed psychotherapist against a reasonably identifiable victim, that has been reported by the psychotherapist to law enforcement
  • Any person who is taken into custody as a danger to self or others under WIC Section 5150, assessed under WIC Section 5151, and admitted to a mental health facility under WIC Sections 5151, 5152, or certified under WIC Sections 5250, 5260, and 5270.15
  • Any person who is addicted to the use of narcotics (state and federal)
  • Any person who is under indictment or information in any court for a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year (federal)
  • Any person who has been discharged from the military under dishonorable conditions (federal)
  • Any person who is an illegal alien (federal)
  • Any person who has renounced his or her US Citizenship (federal)
  • Any person who is a fugitive from justice (federal)

Rev. 11/2007 Page 1 of 2

LIST OF PROHIBITING MISDEMEANORS

Firearm prohibitions for misdemeanor violations of the offenses listed below are generally for ten years from the date of conviction, but the duration of each prohibition may vary. All statutory references are to the California Penal Code, unless otherwise indicated.

  • Threatening public officers, employees, and school officials (§ 71.)
  • Threatening certain public officers, appointees, judges, staff or their families with the intent and apparent ability to carry out the threat (§ 76.)
  • Intimidating witnesses or victims (§ 136.1.)
  • Possessing a deadly weapon with the intent to intimidate a witness (§ 136.5.)
  • Threatening witnesses, victims, or informants (§ 140.)
  • Attempting to remove or take a firearm from the person or immediate presence of a public or peace officer (§ 148(d).)
  • Unauthorized possession of a weapon in a courtroom. Courthouse, or court building, or at a public meeting (§ 171(b).)
  • Bringing into or possessing a loaded firearm within the state capitol, legislative offices, etc. (§ 171(c).)
  • Taking into or possessing loaded firearms within the Governor’s Mansion or residence of other constitutional officers (§ 171(d).)
  • Supplying, selling or giving possession of a firearm to a person for participation in criminal street gangs (§ 186.28.)
  • Assault (§§ 240, 241.)
  • Battery (§§ 242, 243.)
  • Assault with a stun gun or taser weapon (§ 244.5.)
  • Assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm, or with force likely to produce great bodily injury (§ 245.)
  • Assault with a deadly weapon or instrument; by any means likely to produce great bodily injury or with a stun gun or taser on a school employee engaged in performance of duties (§ 245.5 .)
  • Discharging a firearm in a grossly negligent manner (§ 246.3.)
  • Shooting at an unoccupied aircraft, motor vehicle, or uninhabited building or dwelling house (§ 247.)
  • Inflicting corporal injury on a spouse or significant other (§ 273.5.)*
  • Wilfully violating a domestic protective order (§ 273.6.)
  • Drawing, exhibiting, or using deadly weapon other than a firearm (§ 417(a)(1) and (a)(2).)
  • Inflicting serious bodily injury as a result of brandishing (§ 417.6.)
  • Making threats to commit a crime which will result in death or great bodily injury to another person (§ 422.)
  • Bringing into or possessing firearms upon or within public schools and grounds (§ 626.9.)
  • Stalking (§ 646.9.)
  • Armed criminal action (§ 12023.)
  • Possessing a deadly weapon with intent to commit an assault (§ 12024.)
  • Driver of any vehicle who knowingly permits another person to discharge a firearm from the vehicle or any person who willfully and maliciously discharges a firearm from a motor vehicle (§ 12034(b) or (d).)
  • Criminal possession of a firearm (§ 12040.)
  • Firearms dealer who sells, transfers or gives possession of any firearm to a minor or a handgun to a person under 21 (§ 12072(b).)
  • Various violations involving sales and transfers of firearms (§ 12072(g)(3).)
  • Person or corporation who sells any concealable firearm to any minor (former § 12100(a).)
  • Unauthorized possession/transportation of a machine gun (§ 12220.)
  • Possession of ammunition designed to penetrate metal or armor (§ 12320.)
  • Carrying a concealed or loaded firearm or other deadly weapon or wearing a peace officer uniform while picketing (§ 12590.)
  • Bringing firearm related contraband into juvenile hall (§ 871.5 WIC.)
  • Bringing firearm related contraband into a youth authority institution (§ 1001.5 WIC.)
  • Purchase, possession, or receipt of a firearm or deadly weapon by a person receiving in-patient treatment for a mental disorder, or by a person who has communicated to a licensed psychotherapist a serious threat of physical violence against an identifiable victim (§ 8100 WIC.)
  • Providing a firearm or deadly weapon to a person described in WIC 8100 or 8103 (§ 8101 WIC.)
  • Purchase, possession, or receipt of a firearm or deadly weapon by a person who has been adjudicated to be a mentally disordered sex offender or found to be mentally incompetent to stand trial, or not guilty by reason of insanity, and individuals placed under conservatorship (§ 8103 WIC.)

The following misdemeanor convictions result in a lifetime prohibition:

  • Assault with a firearm (§§ 12021(a)(1), 12001.6(a).)
  • Shooting at an inhabited or occupied dwelling house, building, vehicle, aircraft, housecar or camper (§§ 246, 12021(a)(1), 12001.6(b).)
  • Brandishing a firearm in presence of a peace officer (§§ 417(c), 12001.6(d), 12021(a)(1).)
  • Two or more convictions of 417(a)(2) (§ 12021(a)(2).)
  • A “misdemeanor crime of domestic violence” (§§ 18 U.S.C. 921(a)(33)(A), 18 U.S.C. 922(g)(9).)

Rev. 11/2007 Page 2 of 2

Note: The Department of Justice provides this document for informational purposes only. This list may not be inclusive of all firearms prohibitions. For specific legal advice, please consult with an attorney licensed to practice law in California.

California Armed Prohibited Persons Program from DOJ

Since its beginning in 2002, the program has been falling further behind. An analysis prepared by Michel & Associates notes problems with the implementation:

The noble initial goal of the APPS program was to make sure that anyone
who once owned a registered gun, but who had their right to gun ownership
suspended, would forfeit their firearms unless they got their right to
possess a gun legally restored. The assumption was that this would take
guns away from violent bad guys. The promising program was launched, with
the NRA’s support, on July 1, 2002, following the passage of SB 950
(2001). But APPS hasn’t lived up to its promise. Don’t expect to see any
gangland thugs or serial violent predators going to jail through APPS.
Far from capturing violent criminals and felons with guns, APPS largely
disarms people without violent criminal records. And because of
California’s byzantine rights revocation statutes and the fact that
courts never bothered to advise hundreds of thousands of people that the
plea bargain they were making included a loss of gun rights, most people
listed in APPS don’t even know they are prohibited from owning guns.
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