RESTORATON OF GUN RIGHTS UNDER FEDERAL AND MISSOURI LAW
Federal law prevents people convicted of certain crimes from possessing
firearms. 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1) says that anyone "who has been
convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term
exceeding one year" is barred from gun possession. The only felony
convictions that are not covered by the federal gun ban are 1) those "pertaining
to antitrust violations, unfair trade practices, restraints of trade,
or other similar offenses relating to the regulation of business practices,"
per 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(20)(A); and 2) felony convictions from foreign
Under federal law, gun rights may be restored for certain felony convictions.
18 U.S.C. §§ 921(a)(20) and (a)(33)(B)(ii) say that "[a]ny
conviction which has been expunged, or set aside or for which a person
has been pardoned or has had civil rights restored shall not be considered
a conviction for purposes of [ the federal gun ban.”] To determine
whether someone's civil right to gun ownership has been restored for
state convictions, federal courts "look to the law of the jurisdiction
of conviction . . . and consider the jurisdiction's entire body of
United States v. O'Neal, 180 F.3d 115, 119 (4th Cir.).
Missouri bans firearm possession for several reasons, including felony
convictions. RSMo 571.070 states:
Possession of firearm unlawful for certain persons — penalty —
exception. — 1. A person commits the offense of unlawful possession of a firearm if
such person knowingly has any firearm in his or her possession and:
(1) Such person has been convicted of a felony under the laws of this state,
or of a crime under the laws of any state or of the United States which,
if committed within this state, would be a felony; or
(2) Such person is a fugitive from justice, is habitually in an intoxicated
or drugged condition, or is currently adjudged mentally incompetent.
2. Unlawful possession of a firearm is a class D felony.
3. The provisions of subdivision (1) of subsection 1 of this section shall
not apply to the possession of an antique firearm.
This is a lifetime ban from possession firearms for ALL felony convictions,
not just violent felonies. However, the new
Missouri expungement statute provides for the removal of all “collateral” consequences
of some felony convictions if the expungement action is successful. RSMo
610.140. Note that this applies to state crimes and not federal convictions.
Contact an expungement lawyer at the Law Firm of Martin & Wallentine
to discuss whether your case is a good candidate for expungement and the
restoration of your gun rights. Our
gun rights attorney may be able to help you.