Virginia law creates an independent class 1 misdemeanor offense, punished by up to a year in jail and up to a $2,500 fine, for carrying a legally concealed handgun while under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Va Law 18.2-308.012 makes the government’s job easier by allowing a conviction for a DUI under 18.2-388 or a Drunk in Public charge under 18.2-388 to serve as the basis for the Carrying While Intoxicated charge.

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This law, however, does permit for a defendant to rebut or argue against the government in his or her defense, even in the face of a conviction for the DUI and Drunk in Public charges.

Read more about Weapons Law here: Virginia Firearm & Weapon Charges and Hunting Laws: Defense Lawyer’s Explanation of Brandishing, Reckless Handling of a Firearm, and Hunting Offenses

Va Law § 18.2-308.012. Prohibited conduct – carryING a concealed handgun WHILE under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs

A. Any person permitted to carry a concealed handgun who is under the influence of alcohol or illegal drugs while carrying such handgun in a public place is guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor. Conviction of any of the following offenses shall be prima facie evidence, subject to rebuttal, that the person is “under the influence” for purposes of this section: manslaughter in violation of § 18.2-36.1, maiming in violation of § 18.2-51.4, driving while intoxicated in violation of § 18.2-266, public intoxication in violation of § 18.2-388, or driving while intoxicated in violation of § 46.2-341.24. Upon such conviction that court shall revoke the person’s permit for a concealed handgun and promptly notify the issuing circuit court. A person convicted of a violation of this subsection shall be ineligible to apply for a concealed handgun permit for a period of five years.

B. No person who carries a concealed handgun onto the premises of any restaurant or club as defined in § 4.1-100 for which a license to sell and serve alcoholic beverages for on-premises consumption has been granted by the Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board under Title 4.1 may consume an alcoholic beverage while on the premises. A person who carries a concealed handgun onto the premises of such a restaurant or club and consumes alcoholic beverages is guilty of a Class 2 misdemeanor. However, nothing in this subsection shall apply to a federal, state, or local law-enforcement officer.


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