Innocent Possession of a Proscribed Weapon in New York

In People v. Almodovar, 62 NY2d 126, 464 N.E.2d 463, 476 N.Y.S.2d 95 (1984), the Court of Appeals held that in some circumstances, a person may possess a proscribed weapon and still not be guilty of a crime because of the innocent nature of the possession. "The defense of 'temporary and lawful' possession applies because as a matter of policy the conduct is not deemed criminal." Id. at 130. For example, a defendant may not be guilty of unlawful weapon possession if the jury finds that he took the weapon from an assailant in the course of a fight. Id.