What happens if you get an OWI with a weapon in the car?

posted by Matthew Lindholm on Friday, July 14, 2017

What happens if you get an OWI with a weapon in the car? Iowa is a Right to Carry State. Since becoming a Right to Carry State, we have seen a significant increase in charges stemming from OWIs where guns are found in the car. That is an aggravated misdemeanor. Essentially, what happens is the individual forgets about the gun and has a valid permit to carry. Under Iowa law, when that person becomes intoxicated, that permit to carry is no longer valid. If the person gets stopped for operating while intoxicated and there's a gun in the car and they have a valid permit to carry, the officer is likely going to charge that individual with carrying weapons.

That's an aggravated misdemeanor in the State of Iowa. That carries a prison term of up to two years and a fine above just $6250. There is no mandatory minimum jail time on that offense. However, there is a minimum fine of $625. The real kicker for people in this situation though is it they likely are going to lose their permit to carry. With a gun charge tied to an OWI charge, if the jury concludes or a court finds that the individual was not intoxicated, it's a legal impossibility for that person to be convicted of the weapons offense as well because the fact that you were found not to be intoxicated would mean that your permit is valid. That's why it's important to get an attorney who's knowledgeable in the area to help you protect your rights in that situation.
  1. carrying weapons
  2. ccw
  3. criminal defense
  4. drunk driving
  5. drunk driving defense
  6. dui
  7. owi

About The Author

Mr. Lindholm has been named to the Top 40 Under 40 and selected to the Super Lawyers list for the third straight year in 2015.  He has also repeatedly been named Avvo's Client Choice and Top Attorney for DUI defense with a Superb rating of 10.0 out of a pos ... read more