Why It’s Illegal to Own a Gun and Use Marijuana

Owning a firearm is legal in the United States unless you are legally barred from owning one. An example of when you are not allowed to own a firearm is when you are in possession of marijuana. If you are charged under Federal law for possessing a firearm while also possessing marijuana, you will need to consult with a criminal attorney.

Drug Use and Gun Violence

There is scant evidence that there is a connection between marijuana usage and drug crime. However, every Federal Circuit Court has agreed that it is constitutional to ban the usage of marijuana when in the possession of a firearm. Therefore, if you are convicted under this law, you will need to mount a legal defense to have your charges reduced or dismissed.

The Unlawful Use of Marijuana

If you are not legally allowed to possess marijuana or if you are addicted to marijuana even when you using it legally, you will not be allowed to purchase a gun. When you are purchasing a gun, you will be asked a yes/no question about your marijuana usage. If you answer "no" to this question when you are actually using marijuana, you can be charged with a felony on a federal level. You may also be guilty of violating state or local laws.

Even if you already own a gun before you use marijuana, you are not allowed to legally own the firearm. You are also not allowed to own ammunition even if you don't have a gun. However, with the help of a marijuana attorney, you may be able to mount a defense.

Common Defenses Against Marijuana 

To be charged with the use of marijuana while possessing a firearm, the prosecutor needs to prove that you actually used marijuana. If this information was obtained in a manner that violates your 4th Amendment rights, you may be able to have your charges reduced or dismissed.

It's possible that the substance is not actually marijuana. Sometimes, a crime lab makes a mistake and identifies a substance as marijuana when it actually isn't. Also, the substance might have been mixed up with another substance that actually was marijuana at the crime lab.

Another issue is that of "constructive possession." You may be able to argue that the marijuana is not yours. However, to craft an effective defense, you'll need to work within the bounds of the law; a marijuana attorney can help you with this.