Virginia Gun Arrest Process
The most common scenarios in which Virginia gun arrests take place deal with police officers who are engaged in the course of some other investigation, whether it be a traffic stop or just incidental contact. An officer may then observe what they believe to be a weapon that is concealed from plain sight. Under those scenarios, they will arrest that person for possession of a concealed weapon.
To better understand the Virginia gun arrest process and how to best defend against any penalties you may be facing, it is important to consult with an attorney immediately. A knowledgeable gun lawyer in Virginia can build a case to help reduce or dismiss any potential consequences you may be up against.
Other scenarios in which an individual may be arrested involve the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony. This will occur when an individual is arrested for the underlying felony. If it is determined that a firearm was used during the commission of that felony, an individual will be arrested for that gun crime as well in Virginia.
Another common scenario is when people who are not otherwise authorized to purchase guns do so. It will be determined by the shop owner or by the state police that the person is otherwise ineligible to purchase a gun. They will then be arrested for the attempted possession of that firearm and for filling out a form in a way that is untruthful. This constitutes a separate crime.
Anytime a police officer determines that they have probable cause that a crime was committed, they are going to arrest that person for that suspected gun crime in Virginia. Registrations for these firearms are not normally checked beforehand.
Once the person is arrested, whether it be for a gun charge or any other crime, the person will be immediately taken before a person called a magistrate. A magistrate is a judicial officer in Virginia who bears the responsibility in this situation of determining what, if any bond, is appropriate for the person who has just been arrested. In order to do that, they will evaluate the person’s criminal history. A charge will then be filed against them by the police officer.
If a bond is set, the magistrate will have two options. One is to set what is called an unsecured bond. This is most commonly referred to as a personal recognizance where the person just signs a document promising to pay the Commonwealth a certain sum of money if they failed to appear at trial.
Perhaps a more common type of bond is what is called a secured bond, whether it is a cash or corporate surety bond. These are the two most common types of bonds that can occur as a result of the Virginia gun arrest process.
Paying the Bond
In that circumstance, a person is actually required to pay money in order to get out of the jail awaiting trial for the charges. They can do that in one of two ways. They can either pay the cash up front for themselves in the full amount or make a contract with a bail bondsmen. Those bondsmen will generate the payment on their behalf as long as that person agrees to pay 10% of the bond.
The person has $5,000 of cash or a corporate surety bond issued by the magistrate. If the person wants to get out, the person can either pay the $5,000 themselves, have a family member do it, or get a contract with the bondsmen and pay them $500. These are just some of the nuances associated with the Virginia gun arrest process.