The Second Amendment to the United States Constitution grants citizens the right to bear arms, but the states are given the leeway to enforce how and to whom that right is bestowed. Under the Oklahoma Self Defense Act, many people are allowed to openly carry a firearm or to carry a concealed weapon if they receive the appropriate permit from the Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI).
However, there are certain individuals who are precluded by state or federal law from the right to gun ownership, and those who do not have a valid Oklahoma gun permit or reciprocal permit from another state are not allowed to possess certain firearms in Oklahoma.
In general, gun violations in Oklahoma are misdemeanors, but gun crimes such as using a firearm to threaten, injure, or kill another person are typically felony offenses.
Oklahoma handgun licenses are granted or denied by the OSBI. Eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship, Oklahoma residency, age of 21 or older, completion of a firearm safety course, and completion of the OSBI gun license application and payment of the associated fee. Those who apply for an Oklahoma gun permit must agree to "[c]omply in good faith with the provisions of the Oklahoma Self-Defense Act."
Even if a person meets the above requirements, he or she may be denied a firearm license if other circumstances prevent him or her from legal gun ownership:
If a person is prohibited from gun ownership as a result of an alcohol related offense, he or she may regain eligibility for a firearm license three years after completing his or her sentence.
A person with an Oklahoma concealed or open carry permit may carry a weapon on his or her own property and anywhere it is not prohibited by law or by the owner of the establishment. A person may not carry a weapon in any of the following places, regardless of whether or not he or she has a valid gun permit:
Anyone caught carrying a weapon in a prohibited place, even if he or she is licensed to carry a firearm in general, is subject to misdemeanor conviction and a fine of $250.
Using a weapon or firearm to facilitate or commit a crime brings serious felony consequences, and conviction of a felony strips a person of his or her firearm possession rights in the future. Among the most serious gun offenses are the following, each of which is punishable by a maximum of life in prison:
The above offenses are 85 Percent Crimes requiring anyone convicted to serve a minimum of 85 percent of the sentence before becoming eligible for parole. In the case of anyone sentenced to life, his or her first opportunity for parole would occur after more than 38 years at the earliest.
Other felony gun crimes include the following offenses, each of which carries a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison upon the first offense:
The above crimes are the most serious gun crimes in the state, but there are dozens of other Oklahoma gun laws and gun violations:
The Oklahoma Self Defense Act and the state's criminal gun laws are extensive, and it can be difficult to understand exactly what is allowed and what is prohibited by state law. If you are charged with a misdemeanor or felony gun crime, it can have a significant impact on your criminal record and your future gun rights. Call the Law Firm of Oklahoma at (405) 608-4990 to speak with an experienced attorney about your case.