Firearms and Weapons
California law makes it illegal to carry a concealed firearm in a vehicle or on your person unless you have a permit. Possessing other weapons is also illegal, including billy clubs, sword canes, poisoned darts, throwing stars and many other exotic instruments. Brandishing a weapon can result in misdemeanor or felon charges. However, exercising valid self-defense is a complete defense, making it non-criminal to use or display a weapon in defense of yourself or another.
Until 2012 it was not a crime in California to carry an unloaded gun in public, although you could not do so at a school or in a government building. However, Penal Code Section 26350 now makes it illegal to carry any handgun in public, or in a vehicle – unless you have a concealed carry permit.
The law applies to any pistol, revolver or other firearm that is easily concealed, including shotguns or rifles with a barrel less than 16 inches long. It does not apply to most rifles, shotguns and other long arms. Under Penal Code 29800, anyone who has been convicted of a felony, certain misdemeanors, or who are drug addicts, are prohibited from possessing any firearm.Weapon Confiscation Defense
Michael Coffino represents civil litigants seeking to have firearms returned to them following involuntary mental health hospitalization or a domestic violence arrest. He has a successful record of avoiding firearms confiscations by the police pursuant to Penal Code sections 18250 and Welfare and Institutions Code 8102. Some of these cases can be resolved favorably out of court with a settlement that includes return of the weapons. Others require a court hearing in front of a judge where the government has the burden of showing that return of the firearms would likely endanger the public, or a family member. The losing party may be required to pay the other side’s court costs and attorney fees.