Arizona statutes define limits to gun ownership and use

Whether they are used for recreation, to provide protection or for employment, firearms are an important part of life for many Arizona residents. Even when a person has followed the law in the acquisition of a gun, there are other regulations that must be followed. The Arizona State Legislature explains limitations to gun ownership and use in statute 13-3102, and understanding these is helpful in avoiding gun charges.

It may be assumed correctly that carrying or using a gun during a criminal or terrorist act or to assist with such an act is against state law. Similarly, it is illegal to sell a firearm to a person who may reasonably be suspected of using the gun to commit a crime.

While a person may have the right to carry a deadly weapon such as a gun, there are places where it is forbidden unless he or she has official clearance. These include school grounds or a nuclear generating station. On an election day, an unauthorized person cannot bring a deadly weapon into an election polling place.

Arizona law also specifically states that a person cannot deface a gun, or intentionally own a firearm that has been defaced. Arizona statute 13-3101 defines defacing a firearm as making its serial number illegible. This serial number must remain intact or the weapon becomes an illegal firearm. The designation of a firearm is a weapon that works by discharging a projectile. Whether or not the gun is currently loaded is not relevant, but a gun that does not work and cannot be fixed is not included in the definition.