In the United States, anyone convicted of a felony offense automatically loses their right to own a gun or firearm. The federal Gun Control Act of 1968 regulates the sale of guns, interstate gun transfers, and places restrictions on gun ownership by convicted felons. However, state laws have made it possible for convicted felons to have their gun ownership rights returned, provided they meet specific criteria.
If you’ve been convicted of a felony offense, you may be able to have your gun rights restored by obtaining a Colorado Governor’s Pardon. This is the public forgiveness of a past crime and will restore some of the rights you lost when you were convicted. In order to obtain a governor’s pardon, you must show good character both during incarceration and after, and you must have completed all of your sentencing, including probation, at least 10 years earlier.
It is important to know, however, that Colorado governors do not typically grant very many pardons. During his time in office, Governor Hickenlooper pardoned 89 people, including 23 which occurred shortly after the 2018 election. Governor Bill Ritter, on the other hand, pardoned just 42 in his time in office between 2007 and 2011.
Before restoring your gun rights, you must apply to complete the Executive Clemency Application, as well as a personal letter explaining the reasons and circumstances behind your request for pardon. You must also submit numerous other documents, such as tax returns, updated FBI record, fingerprint card and employment record. Your criminal defense attorney can ensure that you have all the documents you need to apply for a Governor’s pardon.
Once your application is processed, the Executive Clemency Advisory Board will review the application and make any recommendations to the governor. The governor will then make the final decision on whether to grant or deny the application. It is important to understand that even if you receive a pardon, you will still have a criminal record. A pardon is different from expungement in that it doesn’t erase or seal your crime, it simply restores some of your civil rights.
Contact Our Boulder Criminal Defense Lawyers
If you are a convicted felon and wish to have your gun rights reinstated, it is important to speak to an experienced and skilled Boulder criminal defense lawyer immediately to review your case. Getting your gun rights back isn’t easy and requires a skilled law firm with extensive knowledge of Colorado law. Contact the Boulder juvenile defense lawyers at Steven Louth Law Offices today for a free consultation and review of your case. Call us at (303) 422-2297 to start building a solid defense against these serious criminal charges.