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Old October 13th, 2009, 04:59 PM   #1
AliasNeo07
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DC Knife Laws...

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Last edited by AliasNeo07; June 25th, 2011 at 04:32 PM.
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Old October 13th, 2009, 05:32 PM   #2
boss66tcode
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3" inches is the technical blade length. It cannot open with a spring, or other assistive mechanism. Additionally, any attempt to prevent the "lockback" feature from working (sticking a matchstick down in the groove, etc.).


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Old October 19th, 2009, 10:31 AM   #3
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22-4504. Carrying concealed weapons; possession of weapons during commission of crime of violence; penalty.



(a) No person shall carry within the District of Columbia either openly or concealed on or about their person, a pistol, without a license issued pursuant to District of Columbia law, or any deadly or dangerous weapon capable of being so concealed. Whoever violates this section shall be punished as provided in 22-4515, except that:

(1) A person who violates this section by carrying a pistol, without a license issued pursuant to District of Columbia law, or any deadly or dangerous weapon, in a place other than the person's dwelling place, place of business, or on other land possessed by the person, shall be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both;


Not sure what the DC courts say what the definition of "weapon" is like they have in MD. For instance, while it seems so broad as to include anything which can cause harm that could be concealed, I would think the DC courts would not consider the tools a construction worker has on him as being a criminal item.
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Old October 20th, 2009, 05:31 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by novus collectus View Post
22-4504. Carrying concealed weapons; possession of weapons during commission of crime of violence; penalty.



(a) No person shall carry within the District of Columbia either openly or concealed on or about their person, a pistol, without a license issued pursuant to District of Columbia law, or any deadly or dangerous weapon capable of being so concealed. Whoever violates this section shall be punished as provided in 22-4515, except that:

(1) A person who violates this section by carrying a pistol, without a license issued pursuant to District of Columbia law, or any deadly or dangerous weapon, in a place other than the person's dwelling place, place of business, or on other land possessed by the person, shall be fined not more than $5,000 or imprisoned for not more than 5 years, or both;


Not sure what the DC courts say what the definition of "weapon" is like they have in MD. For instance, while it seems so broad as to include anything which can cause harm that could be concealed, I would think the DC courts would not consider the tools a construction worker has on him as being a criminal item.
The 3" rule is listed under Title 22-4514(b)
This portion stipulates a "specific intent" requirement. Therefore, as long as one were carrying it for self defense only, you would in theory be OK. To quote - " No person shall within the District of Columbia possess, with intent to use unlawfully against another, an imitation pistol, or a dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, or knife with a blade longer than 3 inches, or other dangerous weapon"

Essentially, the key here is specific intent to commit a crime. Free of that, and according to the code, you should be clear. However, "other dangerous weapon" could give an overzealous officer some discretion if they felt they needed to use it.


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Old October 20th, 2009, 05:38 PM   #5
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Here's a link to the actual statutes on weapons:
http://weblinks.westlaw.com/toc/defa...CF9DAC28345A2A


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Old October 20th, 2009, 06:05 PM   #6
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fvck DC, I work 14th and I and I carry a knife all the time, everytime Im in DC, Im not a criminal so I dont worry about a cop stopping me
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Old October 20th, 2009, 07:17 PM   #7
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I don't think anyone here is arguing whether or not the laws are just or fair. It is however, fair to provide people a link so they can see them.
Everyone is ultimately accountable for themselves, so behave accordingly, I guess.


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Old October 20th, 2009, 07:40 PM   #8
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fvck DC, I work 14th and I and I carry a knife all the time, everytime Im in DC, Im not a criminal so I dont worry about a cop stopping me
Just don't go into a federal building. That is all I go into so I don't carry my benchmade at all in DC.
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Old October 20th, 2009, 11:51 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boss66tcode View Post
The 3" rule is listed under Title 22-4514(b)
This portion stipulates a "specific intent" requirement. Therefore, as long as one were carrying it for self defense only, you would in theory be OK. To quote - " No person shall within the District of Columbia possess, with intent to use unlawfully against another, an imitation pistol, or a dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, or knife with a blade longer than 3 inches, or other dangerous weapon"

Essentially, the key here is specific intent to commit a crime. Free of that, and according to the code, you should be clear. However, "other dangerous weapon" could give an overzealous officer some discretion if they felt they needed to use it.
I understand, but the 3" law and the "any dangerous weapon" law are two different laws and are not necessarily tied to each other.
NOw one could argue that the DC council did not mean for a less than three inch knife to be considered a dangerous weapon because it excludes it from the unlawful intent law, but good luck with that one and applying it to the other statute.
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Old November 9th, 2009, 02:47 PM   #10
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IMO, my Kershaw Speed Safe is only a last resort weapon. I carry pepper spray and an expandable baton, both of which enable me to disable my attacker (assuming he's not armed with a gun) from a distance.
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Old December 20th, 2012, 04:45 PM   #11
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Still not clear.

Quote:
"No person shall within the District of Columbia possess, with intent to use unlawfully against another, an imitation pistol, or a dagger, dirk, razor, stiletto, or knife with a blade longer than 3 inches, or other dangerous weapon"
I don't see the specific provision that excludes Kershaw speedsafe folding knives with a blade less than 3 inches (such as the Leek). I work in DC and wanted to know whether carrying the Leek is legal. Someone referred knives that have "assisted opening or use a spring" but this sort of language exists in a lot of places where sporting goods stores actually sell the Kershaw, and from what I gather Kershaw Speedsafe knives have never been successfully challenged on the grounds that they're like a switchblade or an "automatic opener." Some places even use catchall language like forbidding knives that can be opened with one hand, but again it's not clear what this covers because there are lots of knives that can be opened with one hand that aren't in any sense "automatic" (such as a Gerber Octane). And what if you're handicapped and just have one hand?

I assume that I wouldn't be able to carry the knife into a federal building, but what about the Metro or other office buildings, or just on the street?

Also, is a "torsion bar" a spring?
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Old December 24th, 2012, 06:30 PM   #12
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FYI......

The 3" or less doesn't apply in DC anymore so it can be whatever length. Any switchblade or spring assisted knife more then likely will get you arrested right on the spot. The issue with most other knives is intent. Saying you are carrying it for protection is the wrong answer to give any police officer in DC.

Federal Buildings will all have their own rules. Some won't allow any at all and some will follow the 3" or 4" rule

In general though the 3" rule isn't a violation any longer. The expandable baton may get you arrested also just like brass knuckles,slapjack or nun-chucks.

Hope this answers your question

Edit. I looked at a pic of the leek kershaw. It's not spring assisted so you are good to go
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Old January 14th, 2013, 03:12 AM   #13
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FYI......

The 3" or less doesn't apply in DC anymore so it can be whatever length. Any switchblade or spring assisted knife more then likely will get you arrested right on the spot. The issue with most other knives is intent. Saying you are carrying it for protection is the wrong answer to give any police officer in DC.

Federal Buildings will all have their own rules. Some won't allow any at all and some will follow the 3" or 4" rule

In general though the 3" rule isn't a violation any longer. The expandable baton may get you arrested also just like brass knuckles,slapjack or nun-chucks.

Hope this answers your question

Edit. I looked at a pic of the leek kershaw. It's not spring assisted so you are good to go
Where is the statute hat covers "spring assist" and how is DC law any different than federal law regarding spring assisted oponing? If the knife has a "bias against opening"
then it isn't classed with "automatic" or switchblade knives. I need to see the actual wording.

Update: After doing yet more research this site states things pretty clearly. The only kind of knife that you can't own or carry is what is commonly called a "switchblade." Assisted openers like Speedsafe knives are not switchblades. Balisongs, in fact, are not switchblades, nor are fixed blade knives that are illegal in other states. As long as the knife you carry has utility other than killing people it's legal to carry, no restrictions on size or blade action. You can't carry swords, because they're not really made for cutting steak or slicing veggies.

You *will not* be immediately arrested if found carrying a Kershaw Blur with speedsafe. Strictly speaking, you wouldn't be arrested if you carried a 3.75 in bladed Zero Tolerance Hinderer 0561 even though it's classed as "tactical" because it can be used for everything from cooking meals to cutting firewood, or in rescue operations, or just chopping up cardboard boxes or old rope.

Going into Federal buldings could be much different, though. They may ban knives outright, or look upon anything bigger that 2.5 inches as enormous. But going to the office I'll just wear anything I have from a 2-inch to a 4-inch blade.... with discretion, of course.
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Old January 14th, 2013, 04:02 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by freewheeling View Post
Where is the statute hat covers "spring assist" and how is DC law any different than federal law regarding spring assisted oponing? If the knife has a "bias against opening"
then it isn't classed with "automatic" or switchblade knives. I need to see the actual wording.

Update: After doing yet more research this site states things pretty clearly. The only kind of knife that you can't own or carry is what is commonly called a "switchblade." Assisted openers like Speedsafe knives are not switchblades. Balisongs, in fact, are not switchblades, nor are fixed blade knives that are illegal in other states. As long as the knife you carry has utility other than killing people it's legal to carry, no restrictions on size or blade action. You can't carry swords, because they're not really made for cutting steak or slicing veggies.

You *will not* be immediately arrested if found carrying a Kershaw Blur with speedsafe. Strictly speaking, you wouldn't be arrested if you carried a 3.75 in bladed Zero Tolerance Hinderer 0561 even though it's classed as "tactical" because it can be used for everything from cooking meals to cutting firewood, or in rescue operations, or just chopping up cardboard boxes or old rope.

Going into Federal buldings could be much different, though. They may ban knives outright, or look upon anything bigger that 2.5 inches as enormous. But going to the office I'll just wear anything I have from a 2-inch to a 4-inch blade.... with discretion, of course.
Agreed. This is good, practical advice. Well said too.


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Old January 14th, 2013, 04:05 AM   #15
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Hey, go introduce yourself. http://www.mdshooters.com/forumdisplay.php?f=119

You sound like good people.

Stay safe.


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Old January 15th, 2013, 09:56 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freewheeling View Post
Where is the statute hat covers "spring assist" and how is DC law any different than federal law regarding spring assisted oponing? If the knife has a "bias against opening"
then it isn't classed with "automatic" or switchblade knives. I need to see the actual wording.

Update: After doing yet more research this site states things pretty clearly. The only kind of knife that you can't own or carry is what is commonly called a "switchblade." Assisted openers like Speedsafe knives are not switchblades. Balisongs, in fact, are not switchblades, nor are fixed blade knives that are illegal in other states. As long as the knife you carry has utility other than killing people it's legal to carry, no restrictions on size or blade action. You can't carry swords, because they're not really made for cutting steak or slicing veggies.

You *will not* be immediately arrested if found carrying a Kershaw Blur with speedsafe. Strictly speaking, you wouldn't be arrested if you carried a 3.75 in bladed Zero Tolerance Hinderer 0561 even though it's classed as "tactical" because it can be used for everything from cooking meals to cutting firewood, or in rescue operations, or just chopping up cardboard boxes or old rope.

Going into Federal buldings could be much different, though. They may ban knives outright, or look upon anything bigger that 2.5 inches as enormous. But going to the office I'll just wear anything I have from a 2-inch to a 4-inch blade.... with discretion, of course.
Spring assisted meaning switch blades whether blade pops straight out or flips open via a button push. Flicking ones wrist isn't spring assisted.

Keep your gimmick knives at home such as belt buckle knives,comb knives,lipstick knives etc...it walks a fine line and can be taken from you.

The key is intent so people who want to carry your reg knife aren't gonna get hassled much. Sure you may get stopped and asked to see it but its not that big of a deal

Deal with this every day in DC so I know how it works

You would be amazed at the dumb shit people do with their knives on a daily basis then get pissed it was tossed in the trash or confiscated for destruction. Wear and carry it right and its never an issue. Just know most buildings have their own regs and if you don't like it to bad. Just don't be the idiot that throws their nice 200 dollar blade in the bushes or wherever for safekeeping then wonder why you are now being stopped and its no longer going home with you
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Old January 27th, 2013, 11:55 AM   #17
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Carry this...

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Old March 12th, 2013, 11:45 AM   #18
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Informative thread!
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Old April 27th, 2013, 12:42 PM   #19
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I've found it best to carry a kubaton key ring or a tactical pen. Especially when visiting federal buildings. Given there primary design is not a weapon ie keychain or pen. The kubatons that have prongs protruding from the side intended to fit between the finger in a closed fist have recently been determined to be a type of brass knuckles in a recent court ruling in MD. Forgive me I don't have the reference on hand.


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Old April 27th, 2013, 12:48 PM   #20
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Prior to the "1976 DC Gun Control Law" it was legal to own shotguns and most rifles without having to obtain a permit or even have to register them. just saying
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