Federal Prohibition for a misdemeanor

I need some advice/help.

In 1994 I was traveling through Marylard on the Eastern Shore. I was pulled over by a Sommerst County Deputy for crossing the double line. During his investigation he asked if he could search my vehicle because I was on a “major drug corridor between Virginia and Maryland” being young and naive I said yes he could search my vehicle. I informed him before he started his search that I had a 9mm handgun in my truck in a locked case. He said okay and retrieved the handgun and continued his search. A Maryland State trooper arrived and told the deputy he had to arrest me for the gun. He did so, and I was charged with “Having a Handgun in Vehicle” The chanrge carried a maximum of 3 years and was a misdemeanor. I was found guilty and given a fine and lost my handgun and NO jail time.

A year later I tried to buy another pistol in Virginia and was denied because of a Federal Firearms Prohibition. Now this is where it gets weird. I applied for a Virginia Concealed Cay Permit and it was granted. I have had my permit for over 15 years and no issues.

I was recently told that I was illegally carrying and could be arrested if an officer really wanted to.

My question is… A Circuit Court in Virginia says I can own and carry a concealed handgun. Am I really in any danger of breaking the law here. Also, how can I get my rights restored. I mean a convicted felon can get their rights restored but I have found no way of getting mine restored.

Thanks in advanced for any comments, replies, or advice.


The reason that you may have been able to get your permit, but still not purchase a firearm, is because a concealed carry permit can extend to more than just firearms being concealed weapons.

If you cannot purchase a firearm in a store through a background check, I would not risk it without clear answers from an. attorney in your state.

I don’t have a definite answer as I’m not an attorney, but the best option would be to contact one in your state to look into the possibility of having the record expunged.


In Virginia, there is only a CHP. It is strictly for handguns only. More likely the Virginia check missed the charge. Interestingly, if he has had the CHP for over 15 years, that means he has had 3 background checks for his CHP (original, and two renewals). It could be, too, that if it showed as a misdemeanor, it was not looked into further for the CHP, but an FFL FBI background check might scrutinize the record further.

Agreed, he definitely needs to contact a lawyer.


Lessons learned, every street in America is a major corridor for drug trafficking and never ever let them search the vehicle without a warrant!
Best and only way to restore rights is LAWYER.


I cannot address your carry concerns…too state specific. For future purchases, however, you should look into securing a UPIN (Unique Personal Identification Number). Felons who have their records expunged get one of these to separate who they are now from who they were then. This could work for you. One you have the UPIN you put that number on the Form 4473. When the Feds review your application it tells them you are a different person from someone else with the same name.


I am no lawyer, but my understanding of the law is that any crime punishable by over a year in prison is by definition a felony


Federally Prohibited Persons

  • Persons who have been convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding 1 year
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Not exactly true, some states provide for misdemeanors with more than one year in jail. The difference is jail or state prison. I researched that before posting my comment. I, too, was under the impression that crimes with penalties of one year or more were felonies - it depends on the state.

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Federal law, however,

  • Persons who have been convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding 1 year

Prohibited person

So I’m pretty sure that, regardless of having a state carry permit, it is federally illegal for OP to possess a firearm

(I am not a laywer)

So when we speak of felons being prohibited persons, that federal thing, it’s the straight 1 year deal


Which is likely why his background check on his firearm purchase was declined. Great research. Thanks.


You definitely need to consult a lawyer who deals in firearms problems, not the lawyer who handled your last real estate deal. That is an area of specific interest and the first question you need to ask the receptionist is if the lawyer handles firearms related problems. Even then, he should be able to tell you, without revealing identities how many such cases he has handled. A guy who lived next door to me had been convicted of felony drug dealing. He managed to get declared “rehabilitated” and his record expunged and that is is Kalifornicadia. Each state has their own laws, which is why it is important to have a lawyer who has handled such legal actions in your state.