Does my military bad conduct discharge (BCD) affect my right to own a firearm? 19 Answers as of June 13, 2011

This is NOT a Dishonorable discharge. The charge was UCMJ Article:121 - Larceny of U.S. government property totaling no less than 13,000 dollars. If I did my research correctly, I think it would be a felony? My overall concern is whether or not I can legally own a firearm now.

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Clifford Clendenin & O'Hale, LLP
Clifford Clendenin & O'Hale, LLP | Locke T. Clifford
If you were convicted of a felony, you cannot possess a firearm, unless you have your rights restored.
Answer Applies to: North Carolina
Replied: 6/13/2011
Law Offices of John Carney
Law Offices of John Carney | John Carney
You may have a problem getting a permit if you have any type of felony, but a good attorney may be able to find a way to get you a permit even with a felony under certain circumstances. You may also be able to have the conviction vacated under certain circumstances, but you will have to consult with an experienced criminal attorney to determine whether your circumstances make it possible to circumvent the prohibition of felons to own weapons.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 2/28/2011
The Law Office of B. Elaine Jones
The Law Office of B. Elaine Jones | B. Elaine Jones
In the state of Florida, if you are a convicted felon, you cannot own a firearm. I am not familiar with how a military felony conviction would be viewed. I would suggest that you try and find a criminal lawyer with some military background. They can probably give you the answer you are looking for. Good luck.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 2/27/2011
Edward  D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law
Edward D. Dowling IV Attorney at Law | Edward D. Dowling IV
First this response is general information only and does not establish an atorney client relationship. I am familiar with the different types of discharges and several hears ago I attended a hearing before the Discharge Review Board at the Washington D.C Navy yard for a Marine who also had a BCD. i was able to get his discharge up to Fully Honorable ( he had great witnesses, both military and civilian ) . You should also try to get your discharge upgraded as high as possible. I believe the military Larceny Offense would be a felony in NY because of the large amount of the value of the property. You should hire an attorney and see if can get it reduced to a misdemeanor, otherwise you will not, as a convicted felon, be able to own a firearm.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 2/24/2011
Law Office of Michael Moody
Law Office of Michael Moody | Michael Moody
As a convicted felon, you cannot own a firearm until you've petitioned for and received what's called a "Restoration of Rights," which would then allow you to vote and bear arms.
Answer Applies to: Georgia
Replied: 2/24/2011
    Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick
    Law Offices of Karen Kilpatrick | Karen Kilpatrick
    In Florida, you can own/possess/purchase a firearm if you, the applicant:

    - Is at least 21 and a U.S. resident.

    - Does not suffer from a physical or mental infirmity which prevents the safe handling of a firearm.

    - Is not a convicted felon.

    - Has not within a three-year period preceding submission of the application been convicted of a crime of violence or committed for drug abuse or been convicted of a minor drug offense.

    - Has not been adjudicated guilty even with a suspended sentence for a felony or misdemeanor crime of domestic violence, unless three years has elapsed since probation or the record is sealed or expunged.

    - Is not a chronic or habitual drunkard.

    - Is not currently under any injunction restraining the applicant from acts of domestic violence or repeated acts of violence.

    - States that he desires a legal means to carry a concealed weapon or firearm for lawful self-defense. If you are a convicted felon, you would need to restore your civil rights and apply to restore you right to own a firearm. What was the result of your military case?


    Please keep in mind I am only qualified to discuss FL law, not federal. Federal law prohibits convicted felons from owning firearms but it is my understanding if state rights are restored, the federal government usually follows suit by allowing you to own a firearm, although is not required to.
    Answer Applies to: Florida
    Replied: 2/24/2011
    Ferguson & Ferguson
    Ferguson & Ferguson | Randy W. Ferguson
    You can check with your local sheriff who gives licenses to carry a firearm.
    Answer Applies to: Alabama
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law
    William C. Gosnell, Attorney at Law | William C. Gosnell
    No, it should not affect your ability to get a firearm.
    Answer Applies to: Tennessee
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady
    The Law Office of Kevin O'Grady | Kevin O'Grady
    A person is generally prohibited from possessing a firearm if he has been convicted of a felony or received a dishonorable discharge. However, a lesser form of punitive discharge, such as a BCD, can be received as punishment from either a General or a Special Court-Martial. A general court-martial, even if it resulted in a BCD, and not a DD, is a federal felony conviction and thus would probably generally prohibit a person from possessing a firearm. If the BCD was received as a result of a Special Court-Martial the Special Court-Martial is a federal misdemeanor conviction and does not generally interfere with a person's right to keep and bear arms, unless the conviction otherwise states, such as one that might qualify under the Lautenberg amendment relating to domestic violence misdemeanants. An attorney experienced in criminal and military law would be better able to analyze the particulars of a court-martial conviction as it relates to a person's right to keep and bear arms.
    Answer Applies to: Hawaii
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Nelson & Lawless
    Nelson & Lawless | Terry Nelson
    A "DISHONORABLE DISCHARGE" is one of the offenses making you a person prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition. Any discharge less serious than that should not automatically bar you from firearm ownership, BUT might, depending upon the facts. To be sure, I strongly suggest that you go to a firearms dealer and conduct a non purchase check from DOJ/FBI before submitting actual purchase documents. That way is safe for you to get the answer from the agency involved, without risk of arrest.

    It is a felony with a 10 year prison sentence for a prohibited person to even apply to buy a firearm. Primary reasons according to federal and/or CA state law that bar you from firearm ownership: Felony conviction Violent Misdemeanor conviction [some] Misdemeanor domestic violence conviction Domestic Restraining Order issued against you known user of illegal drugs (even without drug conviction) Admission to a mental hospital Renouncing US citizenship Dishonorable discharge from military service
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Lawrence Lewis
    Lawrence Lewis | Lawrence Lewis, PC
    If you have a felony conviction, you cannot own or possess a firearm. Period.
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Lacy Fields, Attorney at Law, LLC
    Lacy Fields, Attorney at Law, LLC | Lacy Fields
    Assuming you are asking the effect in Missouri, yes a Larceny of $13,000 would be a felony conviction IF you pled guilty to that charge. If the prosecutor agreed to amend the charges to something less serious, it might not be a "felony." And if you got something similar to "SIS" probation, it would not be considered a "conviction." If it IS a felony conviction, you are not allowed to possess firearms. This likely means that you cannot even have them in your house if another family member/roommate owns them. If you have any further questions, feel free to contact me.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Andersen Law PLLC
    Andersen Law PLLC | Craig Andersen
    That would depend on the actual discharge. A dishonorable discharge would affect your gun rights. A medical discharge or a general discharge would not. An Honorable Discharge would not. I understand now that the military is not giving as many Honorable discharges as they once did. That and general Shinseki's foolhardy decision to give every soldier a black beret are idiotic. Please feel free to call if you have any further questions. Thank you for your service.
    Answer Applies to: Washington
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    BCD should not impact your ability to owe a weapon, but the question I have is were you convicted of Larceny charge in a military court. That may be sufficient to be a felony and prohibit you from owing a weapon. Please provide additional details or contact a lawyer directly.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Raiser & Kenniff, PC
    Raiser & Kenniff, PC | Steve Raiser
    Anything over $1,000 would be a felony. Being a convicted felon would bar you from owning a firearm. However, did you receive your BCD as a plea bargain in the case, or were you actually convicted under the UCMJ for the offense?
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Goolsby Law Office
    Goolsby Law Office | Richard Goolsby
    Generally speaking, a prior felony conviction would prohibit a person from possessing a firearm. You may want to retain a criminal attorney in your community to research your case. Good luck!
    Answer Applies to: Georgia
    Replied: 2/23/2011
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C.
    Dennis Roberts, a P.C. | Dennis Roberts
    You cannot own a firearm in CA if you have a felony conviction or a spousal abuse conviction. I don't know but I don't think military convictions count as felonies for these purposes, but don't rely on this. Ask a JAG officer or call Calif. Dept of Justice. They should know the answer. If it doesn't show up on your CI&I(rap sheet in CA) you are probably ok. Go to any police station, get fingerprinted and tell them you want to order your CI&I - don't tell them why or if they ask tell them it's for a job application. If it is not on that rap sheet you are fine.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 2/23/2011
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