Far too many innocent mistakes place law abiding citizens in the criminal justice system – mistakes as innocent as not cleaning out your gym bag.

There are many, many uses for gym bags. They are typically used to store gym clothes, perhaps a gym lock, workout powder, water jugs, and so on. Those same gym bags are ideal for transporting clothes and items for other activities, and can also be used for transporting your lawfully owned firearm and ammunition to and from your home to a local gun range.

This is where the innocent mistake comes in…which has landed numerous people in the criminal justice system after being arrested for violating New York State gun laws.

If you are one of those people who use your gym bag to transport your firearm and ammunition, as responsible as you may be, ask yourself, “how easy would it be for one ammunition shell to fall out of the box and end up in a crevasse of the bag without your knowledge?”

Now think about this – that same gym bag is also optimal for traveling. How many times have you used your gym bag for a weekend trip, or as a carry-on with your luggage?

In New York, if you fly through one of the two airports in Queens, you are subject to both the New York State gun laws, and the even more strict New York City gun laws.

For a mistake as innocent as unknowingly going through airport security with one bullet in your gym bag, you could find yourself being arrested and facing criminal prosecution, a criminal record and penalties as serious as jail time.  Would it surprise you to know that several well-established wealthy business people and proud (legal) gun owners, who have never had any issues with firearms, ammunition or law as a whole, found themselves arrested and in need of a criminal defense attorney, after the gym bag with an errant bullet was used for travel and discovered while going through airport security. Ultimately, in those cases we were able to resolve them with a dismissal, however there was no guarantee that this would be the end result for an innocent mistake.  Ultimately, whenever life throws you a curve at the gym, around the corner, or around the world, it is important to retain an attorney who knows both the criminal justice system and the local state laws.