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Is it illegal just to draw your gun?

| Jul 14, 2021 | Weapons Crimes |

You have a license to carry a firearm, and you do so all of the time. You know the risks you face from criminal activity and you want to be able to protect yourself if anything happens. 

Then, during an argument with someone else, you draw that gun. No shots are fired. No one is injured. Could you be in legal trouble simply for drawing it, even though it was legal for you to have it on you at the time? 

Were you making a threat?

You could get arrested due to the laws against menacing someone or brandishing a weapon. If you take the gun out in order to intimidate someone or threaten them, even if you never fire a shot, you could be found in violation of this law. The person who the threat is directed at has no way to know if you would carry through with it or how serious you are. They may fear for their life and claim that you caused the situation to escalate. 

Of course, this doesn’t mean that it’s always illegal to draw your gun, or there would be no point in carrying it. But you will likely need to argue that you had a valid reason to do so, such as acting in self-defense or trying to protect someone else. Perhaps you feared for your life and you only drew the gun to put an end to the argument without getting injured or killed.  

As you can see, this is a potentially complex situation where people on both sides may tell very different stories about what happened. You need to know your legal options for a defense. Your future is on the line.

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