In Illinois, the laws governing gun purchase, possession and storage also include special provisions relating to people 17 years of age or younger.
These laws include the manner in which firearms should be stored by adults who own them in an effort to keep young children safe.
The Child Access Prevention Law
According to the Gun Violence Prevention Education Center and the Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence, the state mandates safe storage of firearms to prevent a young child from accessing them. According to the Child Access Prevention Law, firearms should be kept in places where children under 14 cannot gain access to them. Some exceptions may apply, including when the gun can be stored in a manner than renders it inoperable.
Possession of firearms by a minor
As explained by the Illinois General Assembly, a minor may be legally allowed to possess or use a firearm for approved recreational purposes such as target shooting at designated ranges or locations. Hunting and other activities may also be allowed by a minor. Outside of that scope, however, a minor found possessing gun ammunition or a gun may be charged with unlawful possession of a firearm.
A charge of unlawful possession of a firearm may result if the minor has a weapon able to be concealed. The charge may also apply if the minor possesses any bullets or other ammunition.
If the minor charged with unlawful possession is found with a handgun, he or she may face Class 4 felony charges. If found with any other type of firearm, he or she may face Class A misdemeanor charges.