Possession of Ammunition and a Firearm by a Convicted Felon

ammo.jpgThe fine folks at the state attorney’s office can often be a bit ambitious in their charging decisions. Recently, I was retained to defend someone accused of both possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon. How is this possible? Well, anything’s possible, I suppose. But, is it legal?

The answer lies in the case of Francis v. State, 41 So.3d 975 (Fla. 5th DCA 2010), a case straight outta central Florida. Of course, Francis was charged and convicted of both possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon. The court overturned one of the convictions, finding that “Dual convictions for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon, arising from defendant’s possession of one loaded firearm, violated the right of protection against double jeopardy; statute prohibited possession of ‘any’ firearm or ammunition, and Legislature idd not express a clear intent to authorize separate units of prosecution for possession of a firearm and possession of ammunition by a convicted felon, particularly where the ammunition was fully encased within the firearm.” Id.

So there you have it. If the law is so clear–and it is–how can our government officials waste taxpayer money filing such nonsense? I guess we’ll never know, but should such unfortunate circumstances befall yourself or a loved one, I know a good defense attorney in Orlando willing to help out.