Can an arrest with no conviction prevent me from buying a handgun?

#1
I've decided to buy a handgun but have a bit of "gut" about the fact that in 2001 I was arrested for harassment.In the end the case was thrown out of court but I was just told a story by a friend about his brother who was denied a handgun because of an arrest.Any truth to any of this?Can an arrest with no conviction gum up my right to own a handgun?

Thanks
 

Upton O

Blind hog fisherman
#3
It's a good question, I suggest that you contact law enforcement for the answer. It's good you are wondering before obtaining a handgun since penalties for unlawful possession are severe. Check with LE to be sure.
 

Josh

dead in the water
#6
(4) In any case where the chief or sheriff of the local jurisdiction has reasonable grounds based on the following circumstances: (a) Open criminal charges, (b) pending criminal proceedings, (c) pending commitment proceedings, (d) an outstanding warrant for an offense making a person ineligible under RCW 9.41.040 to possess a pistol, or (e) an arrest for an offense making a person ineligible under RCW 9.41.040 to possess a pistol, if the records of disposition have not yet been reported or entered sufficiently to determine eligibility to purchase a pistol, the local jurisdiction may hold the sale and delivery of the pistol beyond five days up to thirty days in order to confirm existing records in this state or elsewhere. After thirty days, the hold will be lifted unless an extension of the thirty days is approved by a local district court or municipal court for good cause shown. A dealer shall be notified of each hold placed on the sale by local law enforcement and of any application to the court for additional hold period to confirm records or confirm the identity of the applicant.
Source: http://apps.leg.wa.gov/rcw/default.aspx?cite=9.41.090

Stupid disclaimer **I am not a lawyer and this should not be taken as legal advice**

Since a harassment conviction is listed in other statutes as being a no-go for possession in WA, you should probably expect a delay and for all I know, a denial.
 

Josh

dead in the water
#8
There was no conviction .The case was thrown out.
Right. But as I read the statute that I quoted, if you were arrested for an offense that is on the list of "you don't get no gun" offenses, then you may see your gun buying delayed while they look into it to make sure that you weren't convicted or that there aren't other issues. That is why I put that sentence in bold that I did. It specifically says "arrested" and not "convicted". It also sounds like if you get a picky sheriff, you could see your gun buying go to the courts with more delay. But I don't know what the actual likelihood is of that unless you had made a real enemy of the local law enforcement.

Now, I don't know what exactly they were trying to charge you with. Maybe the offense wouldn't be on the list anyway. The WA gun laws that I can see mention "harassment" mostly in the form of something like "you can't be the subject of a anti-harassment restraining order if you want to own a gun". But I have no idea how that would or would not apply to your situation. I'm just saying that, in my opinion, you shouldn't be surprised if you end up with a delay in your gun purchase.

Again, I'm not lawyer. If you really want to know, ask these guys: http://nwgunlawgroup.com/
 
#10
Many years ago when I was married to my first wife and she called the cops and said I hit her. Even though she did not press charges, the state did and I was arrested for Domestic Assault and put on probation for one year. If there were no issues within the year, that would be the end of it. But know everytime I buy a hand gun or any gun for that matter, it delays the process. I called the state troopers and they said because the charge was dropped but, still having the domestic, it raises red flags and they have to investigate every time. This how ever has never stopped me from buying, possessing or getting my license to carry concealed. Good luck in you endeavers
 
#13
Just curious, you guys that say your past "arrest" delays your purchase, If you have a CCP, does that still matter? My Wa. CCP allows me to buy over the counter w/o a wait. Just wondering if one would avoid the delay for you guys too.
 

Josh

dead in the water
#14
Just curious, you guys that say your past "arrest" delays your purchase, If you have a CCP, does that still matter? My Wa. CCP allows me to buy over the counter w/o a wait. Just wondering if one would avoid the delay for you guys too.
They still call in for a check when you have a CCP. I'm assuming that's when the red flag goes up.
 

dfl

Active Member
#15
I've been arrested and not convicted and have since had top secret security clearance from the govt., bought several handguns and currently hold a cwp. Not convicted is the key.