Ohio has relatively broad laws permitting firearms as compared to other states. As with any dangerous tool, however, ownership of a firearm comes with rules and responsibilities for the owner. One of which, as with motor vehicles, is the imperative that you not use your weapon while intoxicated.
Penalties for using firearms while intoxicated
Using weapons along with drugs or alcohol is a misdemeanor of the first degree.
The use of a firearm while intoxicated could carry a penalty of 180 days in jail and a $1,000 fine depending on the circumstances.
However, if a law enforcement officers makes additional charges stemming from the same incident, such as OVI, possession of drugs, or probation violations, you may find yourself charged with a felony (serious crimes that carry a penalty of a year in prison or more).
It can also affect your right to carry a concealed weapon or even own guns at all.
In order to legally drive a car, you must have a blood alcohol content of less than 0.08. This does NOT mean that you are free to use a firearm or other dangerous weapon as long as your blood alcohol content is under the same limit.
You may be prosecuted for possessing a weapon while intoxicated, even if your blood alcohol content is below the legal limit for driving.
In fact, you may not drink any alcohol while carrying a weapon.
If you have consumed any alcohol recently and then carry a weapon, you are putting yourself at risk for a weapons charge.
It is not necessary that you fire your weapon in order to break the law.
Other Recent Articles by Jim Dearie:
Improper Handling of a Firearm in a Motor Vehicle
How to Handle Traffic Stops When Transporting Firearms
How Can an OVI Conviction Affect My Gun Rights Ohio?
Hiring a Lawyer for Your Weapons Charge
If you have been charged with using a firearm while intoxicated, your rights to continue owning and using firearms may be at risk. Contact the law offices of Dearie, Fischer & Mathews, LLC if you are facing such charges. Our attorneys have several years’ experience in the local courts and will be happy to speak with you about your defense and strategy for protecting your rights and helping you avoid serious consequences that can come with a conviction of using weapons while intoxicated in Ohio.