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How does a ‘Glock switch’ impact Indiana gun crimes?

On Behalf of | Jun 13, 2024 | Firm News

The type of gun a person allegedly possessed plays a key role in the charges they will face and the severity of the penalties if they are convicted of weapons charges. Recently, the Indiana Court of Appeals decided that a man who was charged with having this device on his handgun would be charged with possessing a machine gun. This is a critical decision that will be used in cases where people have accessories for a weapon that were not features when it was made and sold.

In this case, the man was charged with having the device on his Glock 19 when law enforcement found the weapon while executing a search warrant. The man was not the person police were looking for at the time and was not a subject of the warrant. He was at the apartment when the search took place.

As part of his defense, the man claimed that the charge should have been dismissed because state law at the time did not prohibit these accessories. The court did not agree with the argument. With this ruling, the way illegal adaptations to guns will be reassessed by prosecutors.

It is expected to lead to more aggressive attempts to charge people who are accused of these violations. This happened at nearly the same time Gov. Eric Holcomb signed legislation to expand how machine guns are defined. There was a massive increase in these prosecutions in 2023. In Marion County, Glock switch prosecutions saw a spike of 236%.

This substantive change will warrant different defense strategies

Gun charges are among the most serious types of criminal cases a person can face. The political climate and concerns about safety are bringing the issue to the forefront and leading to more intense crackdowns. Those who are arrested on gun charges and might simultaneously be accused of having adapted the weapon illegally need to be cognizant of these new laws and how aggressively they are being pursued.

With any criminal law case – especially those related to gun crimes – having a comprehensive defense can be essential to reaching a positive outcome. Understanding the law, how it is being changed and what it means is a vital part of a case. From the beginning, having a plan is a key part of lodging a defense.