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Criminal Law Violations

Carrying a firearm is a privilege and a responsibility. Where a firearm is carried or the way a firearm is stored or used could expose a permit holder to criminal prosecution. Provided below are selected statutes and laws that relate to firearms. This is not an all-inclusive list of federal, state, and local regulations. Some local governments may have additional regulations or restrictions.

Permit/Identification Required

The holder of a permit to carry must have the permit card and a driver’s license, state identification card, or other government issued photo identification in possession at all times when carrying the permitted weapon. Violation is a petty misdemeanor.

Carry Without a Permit is Prohibited

A person carrying a weapon in a public place must have a permit to carry the weapon. Violation is a gross misdemeanor; subsequent violations are felonies.

Carrying Under the Influence

Carrying a permitted weapon in a public place while under the influence of alcohol or controlled substance is prohibited.

Prohibited Locations

Private establishments
Private establishments may ban concealed weapons by posting a notice to that effect. A person may be ordered to leave upon failure to comply with a reasonable request not to bring the firearm on the premises. Failure to leave is a petty misdemeanor. This does not apply to parking areas.

School / Daycare Property
Permitted firearms are not allowed on school property, which includes licensed day care centers, except when in a motor vehicle or outside the vehicle to place or retrieve the firearm from the rear or trunk.

An employer, whether public or private, may establish policies that restrict the carry or possession of firearms by its employees while acting in the course and scope of employment, but cannot prohibit the lawful carry or possession in a parking area.

Courthouses / City Halls
Persons who enter a courthouse with a handgun must notify the Sheriff prior to entering the facility. Some courthouses or city halls may have more restrictive policies on handguns. Check with your local sheriff or city administrator before entering a courthouse or city hall with a handgun.

Selected Statutes

Storage of a loaded gun
It is a gross misdemeanor to negligently store or leave a loaded firearm in a location where a person knows or reasonably should know that a child (under the age of 18) is likely to gain access, unless reasonable action is taken to secure the firearm against access by the child. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66.

Assault in the Second Degree - Dangerous Weapon
Whoever assaults another with a dangerous weapon may be sentenced to imprisonment for not more than seven years or to payment of a fine of not more than $14,000, or both. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.222 Subd. 1.

Assault is defined as: (1) An act done with intent to cause fear in another of immediate bodily harm or death; or (2) The intentional infliction of or attempt to inflict bodily harm upon another. A gun does not need to be fired for an assault to occur. Pointing a gun toward another person constitutes a second degree assault.

Possession during commission of crime
A person convicted of a number of listed crimes is subject to a minimum sentence if the person or the person’s accomplice had in possession or used, whether by brandishing, displaying, threatening with, or otherwise employing, a firearm at the time of the offense. It is irrelevant if the crime of which the person was convicted involved the use of the firearm. A second or subsequent offense carries a higher minimum sentence. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.11

Reckless handling of a firearm
A sentence of up to 90 days and payment of a $700 fine may be imposed if a person is found guilty of:

  • recklessly handling or using a gun so as to endanger the safety of another; or
  • intentionally pointing a gun capable of injuring or killing a human being, whether loaded or unloaded, at or toward another; or
  • Outside of a municipality, furnishing a child under 14 with a weapon without the parent’s consent or as a parent or guardian permitting the child to handle or use a firearm outside of the parent’s or guardian’s presence.

If any of these are committed in a public housing zone, a school zone, or a park zone, the sentence imposed may be up to one year imprisonment and a $3,000 fine. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66, Subd. 1.

Reckless discharge of a firearm
It is a felony to:

  • intentionally discharge a firearm under circumstances that endanger the safety of another; or
  • recklessly discharge a firearm within a municipality.

These crimes are subject to punishment of imprisonment up to two years and a fine of $5,000 or imprisonment up to five years and a fine of $10,000, depending on where the act took place. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66, Subd. 1a.

Furnishing a firearm to a minor
It is a felony to furnish a firearm within a municipality to a minor under 18 without the prior consent of the minor’s parent or guardian or of the municipality’s police department, subject to imprisonment up to 10 years and a fine up to $20,000. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66, Subd. 1b.

Furnishing a firearm for commission of felony
It is a felony to “recklessly furnish a person with a dangerous weapon in conscious disregard of a known substantial risk that the object will be possessed or used in furtherance of a felony crime of violence”, subject to imprisonment up to 10 years and a fine up to $20,000. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66, Subd. 1c.

Reckless discharge toward vehicle or building
It is a felony to recklessly discharge a firearm at or toward another motor vehicle or a building while in or having just exited from a motor vehicle, subject to imprisonment up to 3 years and a fine up to $6,000; if the person fires at or toward a person or an occupied building or motor vehicle, the sentence may go up to 10 years and a fine of $20,000. Minnesota Statutes Section 609.66, Subd. 1e.


Ramsey County Sheriff’s Office
Minnesota's First Law Enforcement Agency - Established 1849

Sheriff Matt Bostrom