Under certain circumstances, a defendant charged with a gun/firearm offense may be eligible for certain reductions in sentence and even probation. However, probation will only be a possibility in the most extraordinary cases. The following statute is the Graves Act provision which allows for these downgrades. For more information on handgun possession/firearms offenses, including BB guns, consult my gun possession article.
2C:43-6.2. Probation; reduction of mandatory minimum term
On a motion by the prosecutor made to the assignment judge that the imposition of a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment under (a) subsection c. of N.J.S.2C:43-6 for a defendant who has not previously been convicted of an offense under that subsection, or (b) subsection e. of N.J.S.2C:39-10 for a defendant who has not previously been convicted of an offense under chapter 39 of Title 2C of the New Jersey Statutes, does not serve the interests of justice, the assignment judge shall place the defendant on probation pursuant to paragraph (2) of subsection b. of N.J.S.2C:43-2 or reduce to one year the mandatory minimum term of imprisonment during which the defendant will be ineligible for parole. The sentencing court may also refer a case of a defendant who has not previously been convicted of an offense under that subsection to the assignment judge, with the approval of the prosecutor, if the sentencing court believes that the interests of justice would not be served by the imposition of a mandatory minimum term.
L.1989,c.53,s.1; amended 1993,c.49,s.2.