New York has relatively strong laws to disarm hate, although some people convicted of violent hate-motivated misdemeanors are still eligible to access guns.
Access to Guns for People Convicted of Hate Crimes in New Mexico
|Violence with Severe Bodily Injury||Violence with Bodily Injury||Other Crimes Involving Intentional Use of Force||Threats with Deadly Weapons|
Other Credible Threats to Physical Safety
|Federal Law||Very limited or no access||Very limited or no access||Some access||Very limited or no access|
|State Law||Very limited or no access||Very limited or no access||Some access||Very limited or no access|
New York law classifies specified crimes as hate crimes when the offender intentionally commits the offense or selects the victim based, at least in substantial part, “because of a belief or perception regarding the race, color, national origin, ancestry, gender, gender identity or expression, religion, religious practice, age, disability or sexual orientation” of the victim.1 In sentencing, New York law reclassifies these hate crimes as one level above the underlying crime: an offense that is ordinarily a class A misdemeanor (punishable by up to one year in prison), for instance, is elevated to a class E felony when it is a hate crime, and punishable by up to four years.2
New York does not expressly prohibit hate crime offenders from accessing firearms on this basis, but does broadly restrict gun access by people convicted of felonies or other specified “serious offenses.”3 Under New York law, most violent conduct may be charged as a felony hate crime,4 so most people convicted of violent hate crimes in the state are restricted from accessing firearms under both state and federal law.5
However, there are some gaps that allow people convicted of certain misdemeanor hate crimes to access firearms, including those convicted of “third degree menacing” (intentionally placing a victim in fear of death or imminent serious physical injury by physical act),6 and harassment offenses that involve “striking, shoving, [or] kicking,” or harassing conduct that places a victim in reasonable fear of physical injury.7.)) (However, in some cases, such conduct could instead be charged as felony hate crimes under other statutes, like assault).
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- N.Y. Penal Law § 485.05(1)(a)-(b). The underlying offenses that are classified as hate crimes include, among other offenses: assault in the first, second, and third degrees; menacing in the first, second, and third degrees; reckless endangerment in the first and second degrees; strangulation in the first and second degrees; manslaughter in the second degree and, with some limitations, in the first degree; murder in the second degree; stalking in the first, second, third, and fourth degrees; certain rape and sexual abuse offenses each requiring an element of “forcible compulsion”; unlawful imprisonment in the first and second degrees; kidnapping in the first and second degrees; coercion in the first and second degrees; criminal mischief in the first, second, third, and fourth degrees; arson in the first, second, third, and fourth degrees; harassment in the first degree; and certain aggravated harassment offenses in the second degree. N.Y. Penal Law § 485.05(3).
- N.Y. Penal Law § 485.10(2). See also N.Y. Penal Law §§ 70.15; 70.00.
- N.Y. Penal Law §§ 265.01; 400.00(1); 265.00(3) (defining “firearm”); 265.00(17) (defining “serious offense”).
- See, e.g., N.Y. Penal Law § 485.05(3); N.Y. Penal Law §§ 120.00 (assault in the third degree reclassified as a felony hate crime); 120.14 (“menacing in the second degree” reclassified as a felony hate crime); 120.50(3) (“stalking in the third degree” reclassified as a felony hate crime); 240.30(1), (2), (4) (“aggravated harassment in the second degree” reclassified as a felony hate crime).
- 18 U.S.C. § 922 (g)(1); 18 U.S.C. § 921(a)(20)(B).
- N.Y. Penal Law § 120.15 (reclassified as a class A misdemeanor as a hate crime and not considered a firearm-prohibiting “serious offense.”).
- N.Y. Penal Law § 240.25; 240.26; 240.30((3) (Only certain subsections of New York’s “Aggravated harassment in the second degree” statute may be charged as hate crimes, omitting subsection (3