With the rising number of mass shootings, some prosecutors have sought charges against the parties who provided the firearms to the mass shooter. For example, one Illinois man was recently convicted of illegally giving his son an assault-style rifle which the son later used in the 2018 Waffle House shooting in Tennessee.

            Under Illinois law, you can be charged with a felony for giving or selling a firearm to the wrong person under the wrong circumstances.  You commit the offense of unlawful sale or delivery of firearms when you knowingly sell or give any firearm to:

*  a person under age 18 where the firearm is of a size which may be concealed upon the person or where the person under 18 does not possess a valid Firearm Owner’s Identification Card 

* a person under age 21 who has been convicted of a misdemeanor other than a traffic offense or who has been adjudged delinquent

* any narcotic addict

* any convicted felon

* any person who has been a patient in a mental institution within the past five years. (The Waffle House shooter had undergone mental health treatment in 2016, two years prior to the attack.)

* any person with an intellectual disability

            If you are charged with unlawful delivery of a firearm, contact an experienced criminal law attorney immediately.  Do not try to talk your way out of the situation as you could instead hand the state the evidence they need to convict you.  An attorney can review your case for your best possible defense.  As with most criminal offenses, the state must prove all the elements of the offense beyond a reasonable doubt.  Did you knowingly give the person the firearm?  Does the person meet the law’s definition of a narcotic addict or patient in a mental institution or person with an intellectual disability?  Even if the evidence against you is overwhelming, an attorney who is respected in the courthouse may be able to negotiate a more favorable plea agreement than you can on your own.            .

      If you have questions about this or another related Illinois criminal or traffic matter, please contact Matt Keenan at 847-568-0160 or email

(Besides Skokie, Matt Keenan also serves the communities of Arlington Heights, Chicago, Deerfield, Des Plaines, Evanston, Glenview, Morton Grove, Mount Prospect, Niles, Northbrook, Park Ridge, Rolling Meadows, Wilmette and Winnetka.)

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