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North Brunswick resident and gun owner Steffon Josey-Davis is fighting to clear his name after police charged him with a second-degree felony for possessing a gun which he legally owns.

Josey-Davis, who works as an armed security guard with Loomis Armored, was driving to visit a gun range with a friend when police confiscated the weapon during a routine traffic stop. In New Jersey, loaded weapons need to be carried in a locked trunk. Unfortunately, Josey-Davis had accidentally placed his pistol in the glove compartment. He explains:

"On September 20th, 2013, I was planning to go to the gun range with a friend, and was in the garage checking my firearm when my 6-year-old sister walked in and surprised me. I have always tried to keep my firearm away from my younger siblings as to not spark their curiosity, so I quickly shoved it into my glove compartment before picking her up and taking her back inside the house. Later that day, having been distracted by a chain of events, I got in my car, with my gun still in my glove compartment. I was pulled over shortly after for a routine traffic stop. Immediately I realized my mistake; in NJ a loaded weapon must be carried in a locked trunk. I alerted the officers that I had a weapon in the car. They confiscated and told me I would be able to pick it up later that week, and I thought that was the end of it. When I arrived at the police department, I was informed that I had been charged with weapons possession, a second-degree felony. Instantly my life changed."

The Police Disagree

Middlesex County Prosecutor Andrew C. Carey, when asked to comment on the events, stated "Describing his conduct as a simple mistake does not negate the seriousness of this law, which was created to protect police officers and the public. He did not possess a license to carry the weapon, which was seized as evidence."

In other words, if Josey-Davis possessed a permit to carry the weapon he would have had the option to legally leave the pistol in the glove compartment. Josey-Davis, who has no criminal record, was immediately handcuffed and arrested.

"I almost fainted. My life was ruined - all my hard work went down the drain," said Josey-Davis, who is now seeking to obtain a pardon from Governor Chris Christie's administration. While Christie's office has confirmed their receipt of the pardon petition, they have refused to issue any comment.

If you or someone you know has been charged with a felony, you should speak to a qualified attorney right away in order to defend your rights. Here at Smith & Doran, we have criminal defense experts who are willing and able to take on your case. Call us now at 973-292-0016 to schedule a consultation.

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