In certain cases, defendants who have been convicted of even misdemeanor domestic abuse can be barred by law from owning or possessing firearms. The relevant laws and statutes seek to protect victims of domestic abuse from exposure to further or more serious harm.
Maine adheres to the Domestic Violence Offender Gun Ban, based upon the federal Lautenburg Amendment passed by Congress in 1997. This ban imposes restrictions upon possession and ownership of firearms for those convicted of misdemeanor domestic violence crimes. In a case brought by defendants from the State of Maine, the Supreme Court recently affirmed the firearms ban; the defendants had claimed that misdemeanor domestic violence charges were insufficient to justify the loss of their constitutional right to possess a firearm. To a majority of the Court, access to firearms is what changes a violent domestic situation into a potential murder.
Maine strictly upholds the high standard for this gun control statute. Under the Act, those accused and convicted of a domestic violence crime cannot legally acquire, ship, transport, own, or handle guns. The law also makes it illegal for vendors to knowingly or unknowingly sell guns to those convicted of domestic violence crimes, whether in private sales or at certified trade or gun shows.
If you are embroiled in domestic violence or abuse, either as a perpetrator or a victim, you need to retain the services of a Portland Maine criminal defense attorney with experience in dealing with such cases. Richard Berne has defended abusers and victims alike; has a keen knowledge of the cycle of domestic abuse and its effects on all involved parties; and is familiar with the various charges and firearm bans that may result from state or federal domestic violence prosecutions. Call The Law Offices of Richard Berne today to set up a consultation and discuss your options with a knowledgeable and compassionate domestic violence attorney.