Every American is given the right to bear arms, as laid out in the second amendment of the United States Constitution. But the right to firearm possession varies a great deal from state to state. Whether you are new to Indiana or simply misinformed, it is not difficult to end up in trouble for the illegal possession of firearms.
One of the most commonly misunderstood areas of the law in Indiana is when and where you can carry a weapon, either openly or concealed. This guide is designed to help you understand when — and who — can and cannot carry a handgun in the state of Indiana. Keep in mind that this is by no means a conclusive list. For more information, contact an attorney.
Who can’t legally purchase a firearm?
- Minors or anyone younger than 18
- Anyone between the ages of 18 and 23 who has been convicted as a juvenile for a crime that would be a felony for an adult
- Anyone who is determined to not have “moral character” or be a “proper person”
- Convicted felons or anyone convicted of a violent crime
Where can’t you legally possess a firearm even if you have a license?
- Schools and school property, whether they be public or private (this includes head start programs, preschools, or even places being used temporarily for a school function)
- Government buildings such as courthouses, the Indiana State House, and the Indiana Government center or on State Fair grounds
- On aircrafts and in restricted areas of an airport
- On property owned by the Army Corps of Engineers
If you attempt to carry a handgun without a license, you will have committed a Class A misdemeanor. If convicted, you can face a fine of up to $10,000 and/or a year in jail. If you are convicted of possessing a handgun and you have a prior felony conviction and/or a prior conviction for unlawfully possession a handgun, you could face a Level 5 Felony, which increases your possible penalty range of 1 to 6 years in prison and/or a $10,000 fine.
If you bring a firearm to a school, school function, or school bus, you have committed a Level 6 felony, which is punishable by a fine of as much as $10,000 and/or six months to two-and-a-half years in prison.
Firearm possession in the secured area of an airport is a Class A misdemeanor, requiring up to a $5,000 fine and/or up to a year of jail time. Possessing a firearm on an airplane is a Level 5 Felony, which can lead to a $10,000 fine and or two to six years of prison time.
What to Do if You Are Charged With Firearm Possession
If you have made a mistake and have been charged with violating the carry laws in Indiana, it is important that you understand the severity of your situation. Reach out to a criminal defense attorney who is familiar with the laws surrounding firearm possession.