Can Felons Go To Gun Range? If they can, are there any rules? Let’s dive in to find out.
Once someone has been convicted of a felony crime, they’re going to face immense repercussions. First, they’ll likely have to spend time in prison. Unfortunately, a stint in prison can be life-changing.
It is only the first step in the process. When you’re released, your life is not going to return to normal since you’ll lose certain rights.
Felons typically cannot own or possess firearms. While you might be able to purchase and shoot BB or pellet guns, you cannot own a real firearm.
Does this mean that you won’t be able to visit a gun range with your friends and family members? Continue reading this guide to find out.
Are you familiar with the most common felonies? Felony crimes tend to be worse than misdemeanors. They’re considered worse so the punishment for a felony will be harsher than the punishment of a misdemeanor.
Although there are others, some of the most common felonies include rape, murder, kidnapping, aggravated assault, burglary, and more.
Unfortunately, people are going to make mistakes in their lives. In some cases, your mistake will result in a felony charge and conviction.
If this happens, the mistake will follow you for the rest of your life.
Felons & Firearms
Can you own a firearm as a felon? Unfortunately, the answer is no. Federal law states that people convicted of felony crimes will be prohibited from purchasing or owning a firearm. Even if the gun isn’t yours, you shouldn’t have it.
If a felon is caught with a firearm, they’re going to get into trouble. The repercussions will be harsh. However, it should be noted that some states allow felons to obtain and possess a gun after completing certain steps.
For instance, you might be able to get a gun in Louisiana. After ten years of completing your sentence and parole, you can possess a gun. In South Dakota, you’ll need to wait 15 years.
In other states, the applicant has to be pardoned before they can own a firearm. It is pertinent to check the precise rules in your state so you can find out what you can and cannot do.
Can Felons Go To Gun Range?
Can A Felon Go To A Shooting Range? You may want to visit your local shooting range so you can have fun with your friends. In many cases, your felony conviction is going to prevent you from doing this.
You must remember that shooting range owners have the right to review a customer’s criminal record before allowing them to enter. Since felons cannot possess firearms in the United States, you cannot enter a gun range.
Before entering you’ll have to complete a waiver. The paperwork will require you to submit information regarding your criminal history.
More about this will be provided below.
The Shooting Range Waiver
Before you’ll be able to enter your local gun range, you’ll have to sign a waiver. Shooting ranges make visitors do this to ensure that they’re protected from certain liabilities.
In addition to this, the waiver will tell the gun range more about your criminal history. It is pertinent to be truthful when completing the form.
If you’re caught lying on this document, you should face a criminal charge. Once the owner realizes that you’ve been convicted of a felony crime, you’ll likely be denied access to the facility.
Some gun ranges will background check visitors. When this happens, the company will check your criminal record, credit report, educational history, and driving record.
In particular, they want to make sure that you’re not a violent person or a felon. Once they’ve reviewed your information, the manager of the gun range will either keep you out or allow you to come inside.
Can Felons Shoot Any Guns?
While you can’t visit a professional shooting range, you might be able to make your own. However, you must remember that felons should never own or possess firearms. The risks are too high.
Therefore, you could purchase an airsoft rifle and shoot it in your backyard. Just remember that the laws tend to vary from one area to another.
Therefore, you should carefully check the laws in your state, county, and city before trying to purchase any type of firearm.
Why Can’t Felons Visit Gun Ranges?
Sadly, felons will not be able to visit shooting ranges. Ultimately, this is one of the rights you lost when you decided to commit a felony crime. Why can’t a felon enter a gun range?
The problem is that felons are not allowed to possess firearms. It is illegal for any felon to have any type of firearm. When you visit a shooting range, you’re likely going to have access to guns.
Therefore, the two do not mix. It is best to keep felons out of these facilities. Most gun range managers do not want to take the risk. Instead, they’ll prevent felons from entering their establishments.
You’ll also need to realize that giving a gun to a felon could lead to issues. It is illegal to do so in the United States. Again, a gun range owner doesn’t want to take that risk.
They don’t want to get caught giving handguns to felons. The best way to avoid such issues is by preventing felons from entering their establishments.
Restoring Your Gun Rights
A felony conviction will turn your life upside-down and lead to severe repercussions. Nevertheless, you should remember that your life isn’t over.
If you’re willing to dedicate yourself and work hard, you can overcome this problem. After many years, you can likely have your gun rights restored.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be able to visit your local shooting range without repercussions or restrictions. Before you can get your rights restored, you’ll have to meet the requirements.
For instance, you must wait 20 years after convicting a forcible felon. Furthermore, it must be 20 years after you’ve finished your sentence.
After you’ve waited, you can begin the process of restoring your rights. The process can be difficult so it is a good idea to get help from a professional. An attorney will guide you through the process and make it much easier.
You can also try obtaining a pardon from the President of the United States. Although it might seem like a long shot, it has happened.
Restoring Federal Gun Rights
You must remember that there are separate laws. While the federal government has strict laws, your state government may not. Regardless, you have to research both.
One thing you’ll find out is that the federal government does forgive easily. You cannot restore your federal gun rights by going to a federal court. Instead, you’ll have to restore your rights at the state level.
According to federal laws, you can try to get your federal rights restored by applying with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms. The problem is that Congress prohibited the ATF from spending money for this purpose in 1992.
Therefore, they’re not going to check, approve, or deny your application. If you want to get your gun rights restored so you can visit a gun range, you’ll have to work with your state courts.
Robert Gomez was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. He currently lives in Northern California with “the wifey,” “the kids,” “the dog,” and “that cat,” 🙁 He is also a former journalist who has interviewed murderers on death row. Felonyfriendlyjobs.org was born to help ex-felons get a second chance in life.