If the abuser's gun(s) is taken away, what will happen to it?
In St. Croix, if the abuser’s gun is taken away, it will be given to the firearms division and placed in the property unit. For other Islands, you can contact your local police department to ask this question.
I do not have a restraining order against the abuser and s/he has not been convicted of a crime. Can s/he have a gun?
Even if the abuser was never convicted of a crime and you do not have a protection order against him/her, there are still other reasons why it may be illegal for him/her to have a gun. Virgin Island law says that a person cannot get a license to have a gun if:
- s/he is a fugitive from justice;
- s/he is an unlawful user of or addicted to any controlled substance (drug),1an alcoholic, or a narcotic or drug addict;2
- s/he has been judged by a court as a “mental defective,” has been committed to a mental institution,1 or is mentally incompetent;2
- s/he is illegally/unlawfully in the United States;
- s/he has been discharged from the United States Armed Forces under dishonorable conditions;
- s/he was a citizen of the Unites States but has renounced his/her citizenship; or
- the Police Commissioner of the Virgin Islands believes that s/he is an “improper person” to possess a license to carry a firearm based on justifiable reasons.3
If none of these situations apply, you can still make a plan for your safety. See our Safety Tips page for more information. You can also contact your local domestic violence organization for additional help. You may want to talk to them about whether leaving the area - either long term or for a little while - might help improve your safety. See our VI Advocates and Shelters page to find a local domestic violence organization near you.
Also, federal laws, which apply to all states, restrict an abuser’s right to have a gun under other circumstances. Go to Federal Gun Laws to get more information.
1 23 V.I.C. § 456a
2 23 V.I.C. § 458(a)
3 23 V.I.C. §§ 458(a); 451(b)
I've read through all of this information, and I am still confused. What can I do?
Trying to understand both federal and state gun law can be confusing, but there are people out there who can help you better understand the law and your rights under the law.
- You can write to our Email Hotline.
- You can contact a local domestic violence organization in your area (See our VI Advocates and Shelters page).
- You can also contact the National Center on Protection Orders and Full Faith & Credit to get more information about the federal firearm law and how it applies to you: 1-800-903-0111.