Hampton Roads Gun Investigations

General Hampton Roads gun investigations are often meant to determine whether a person possesses a firearm legally include talking to eye witnesses; reviewing video surveillance footage; conducting forensic analysis; and talking to the suspect. In some cases, the suspect may give officers a statement that implicates themselves for a crime.

In Hampton Roads and around the country there is a heightened sensitivity regarding guns which may play a role in a gun investigation. When police and prosecutors find that a firearm was involved in a case, they take it seriously and investigate thoroughly. Therefore, it could be critical to discuss possible defenses with a professional gun attorney right away.

Common Strategies in Hampton Roads Firearm Investigations

Common strategies used by law enforcement that may let a person know they are under investigation for a gun charge include talking to an individual about their specific whereabouts at a particular time and asking if they possess a firearm. Questions like this may suggest that the police believe the individual may be implicated in a crime in which a firearm was involved.

Can Law Enforcement Search Someone’s Car?

Hampton Roads police officers can investigate a person’s car for guns if they have a warrant to search a vehicle, or they can also execute a search if they have probable cause. For example, if a person has been seen firing a gun then entering a vehicle to leave the scene, the police may receive a tip with the driver’s description and detailed license place and vehicle information. If a police officer sees a driver and vehicle that roughly match the description, that may qualify as probable cause for a search of the vehicle.

Likelihood of Someone’s Person Being Inspected

Hampton Roads police officers can inspect the person to see if they possess a firearm in instances defined by the courts. When arresting a person or questioning a suspect, officers are allowed to perform pat-down searches for weapons or contraband. Officers can also search the person for a firearm if they have an arrest warrant or probable cause to suspect that the individual committed a crime and has a firearm on their person.

Commonly Presented Gun Evidence

The most common type of evidence collected in Hampton Roads gun investigations is the firearm. In some instances, officers may be able to obtain fingerprints or DNA evidence from the firearm that they can use to link the firearm to the defendant.

When trying to prove a gun charge case the prosecution typically uses eyewitness evidence from the victim(s) or other people who saw the defendant possessing, using, or displaying the firearm in some manner; fingerprints or DNA that may be obtained from the firearm; and ballistics testing to determine whether or not a bullet used in a crime came from a specific firearm.

How Officers Treat Firearm Evidence

During investigations authorities may gather evidence while conducting interviews with the suspect, or with search warrants that allow them to confiscate a firearm believed to be used in the commission of a crime. There is some room for interpretation of evidence in Hampton Roads gun investigations, depending on what the officers found and where they found it.

If officers find a firearm in a person’s waistband, it may be difficult to argue that the defendant didn’t have a gun on their person, but if officers find a firearm under a pile of garbage 50 feet from the defendant, there may be some argument as to whether or not that gun was theirs, and whether or not they have any certain knowledge of it.

If officers find the individual’s fingerprints or DNA evidence on a firearm, the argument may involve when the individual handled the firearm and whether or not it happened at the time of the crime as asserted by the government.