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Aiding a Felony with a Firearm Laws (PC 12022.4) in California

PC 12022.4: Aiding a Felony with a Firearm

Legal Definition:

PC 12022.4: (a) ” Any person who, during the commission or attempted commission of a felony, furnishes or offers to furnish a firearm to another for the purpose of aiding, abetting, or enabling that person or any other person to commit a felony shall, in addition, and consecutive to the punishment prescribed by the felony or attempted felony of which the person has been convicted, be punished by an additional term of one, two, or three years in the state prison.  The court shall order the middle term unless there are circumstances in aggravation or mitigation.  The court shall state the reasons for its enhancement choice on the record at the time of the sentence.  The additional term provided in this section shall not be imposed unless the fact of the furnishing is charged in the accusatory pleading and admitted or found to be true by the trier of fact.”

What does this mean?

This particular legal provision is not classified as a criminal section that can be directly charged against an individual. Instead, it falls under the category of an Enhancement. Allow me to explain what this entails. In order for this provision to be applicable, one must first be charged with a felony offense. Subsequently, it is alleged that the individual in question has additionally committed this secondary violation by aiding and abetting another person in the commission of a felony, specifically by providing them with a firearm. It is important to note that this enhancement also extends to attempted crimes. This means that the success of the underlying felony is not a prerequisite for the addition of this enhancement to the individual’s case.

When we refer to a firearm, we are encompassing any device that has been specifically designed for use as a weapon. It involves the discharge or expulsion of a projectile through a barrel by means of an explosion or another form of combustion. It is worth noting that the firearm does not need to be in working order as long as it was designed to shoot and appears capable of doing so.

This particular enhancement revolves around a situation wherein a second party is in the process of attempting to commit a felony offense. In this scenario, you would provide assistance to this individual by furnishing them with a firearm while they are still planning or attempting to carry out the felony. Simply put, you are facilitating the commission of the felony by providing them with the necessary means, namely a firearm. It is not necessary for you to be physically present during the commission of the crime, as long as you provided them with the firearm to carry out the felony.

Penalties

As state above, a violation of PC 12022.4(a) is an enhancement, not a stand-alone crime. Therefore, you would never be charged with enhancement by itself, it has to be added to a felony offense you are already charged with. The enhancement under PC 12022.4(a), can add an additional 1, 2, or 3 years added to your underlying offense, to be run consecutively. You would have to serve at least 85% of that time in custody.

PC 12022.4(a) is a not strike offense under the Three Strikes Law and is not a charge requiring Sex Registration under PC 290. You would likely face a loss, suspension, or revocation of your professional license. You could also face immigration consequences if you are a non-US Citizen living in the United States, since this may be considered an aggravated felony under Federal Law since it involves a firearm.

Common Defenses

  1. Statute of Limitations
  2. Insufficient Evidence
  3. Violation of Rights
  4. Coerced Confession

Enhancements to criminal charges differ significantly from regular charges, requiring careful consideration. One common defense is to establish that the offense committed was not a felony. It is crucial to note that this enhancement specifically applies to felony charges. For instance, if a misdemeanor offense involves the use of a previously owned firearm, this enhancement would not be applicable. Similarly, providing someone with a firearm to aid in committing petty theft would not constitute a felony offense eligible for this enhancement.

It is generally inadmissible for a confession obtained through forceful police conduct to be used against an individual in court. Logically, if law enforcement unlawfully coerces a confession, it should not be admissible as evidence. Police interrogations can involve physical or psychological abuse, where officers, suspecting they have the right person, may resort to any means necessary to obtain a confession. They may deceitfully claim the existence of witnesses or accusations from others to manipulate you into admitting guilt. While such tactics are considered standard police procedure, there are limitations to what they can legally do. When these limits are crossed, a coerced confession may come into play. To defend against self-incriminating statements made in your case, asserting that you were forced to admit to supplying a firearm to aid in a felony can be crucial.

Please note that this information is provided by an AI assistant and should not be constituted as legal advice. Consult with an experienced attorney for proper guidance tailored to your specific situation.

Call Today

The path following a criminal conviction is fraught with uncertainty, potentially altering the course of your life in profound ways. In these turbulent times, Inland Empire Criminal Defense emerges as a source of steadfast support and expert legal guidance. Our Ontario-based PC 12022.4 attorney brings to the table a distinguished history of defending individuals across the Inland Empire against criminal charges, with a particular focus on navigating the complexities of enhanced sentencing provisions.

Understanding the significant implications of enhanced sentencing is crucial to mounting an effective defense. Our expertise in this area serves as a guiding light, offering clarity and strategic direction to those we represent.

Why Choose Inland Empire Criminal Defense for PC 12022.4 Charges?

  • Proven Expertise in Enhanced Sentencing Defense: Our attorney’s focused experience with PC 12022.4 charges ensures that your case is approached with a deep understanding of the law and the strategies necessary for a successful defense.
  • Comprehensive Legal Support: Recognizing the stakes involved, we are committed to providing you with continuous support and advocacy, ensuring that your concerns are addressed promptly and effectively.
  • Dedicated to Protecting Your Rights: Our commitment to your case is unwavering, as we strive to safeguard your future by challenging the prosecution’s case and seeking the most favorable outcomes possible.

Navigate Your Legal Journey with Confidence

The challenges presented by a criminal charge, particularly one involving enhanced sentencing under PC 12022.4, demand proactive and informed legal representation. Inland Empire Criminal Defense, strategically located in Ontario, CA, stands ready to offer the dedicated legal support and guidance necessary to face these challenges head-on.

Contact Inland Empire Criminal Defense Today

If you’re confronting charges that could result in enhanced sentencing under PC 12022.4, don’t face this critical juncture alone. Contact Inland Empire Criminal Defense at 909-939-7126 to benefit from a no-obligation initial consultation. Our commitment to round-the-clock availability means we’re here to address your concerns and advocate for your rights at any hour. Trust us to be your ally in navigating the complexities of your legal situation, championing your cause every step of the way.

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