Thread: Cops and blades
3/10/2007 10:54pm, #1
- Join Date
- Sep 2002
- Hilo Island of Hawaii
- Kyokushinkai / Kajukenbo
Cops and blades
My idiot teenage son, who's does know some ma, is convinced that it's a good idea to hitchhike all over N. America. I'm thinking that after about 11 minutes on the road he'll be in a cannibal stew, and that's after he's been gang raped and tortured.
I told him I'd buy him shoulder throwing knives and a $200 belt buckle knife, but he said that only a showing hunting type knife and a non-flick opening type pocket knife would keep him out of jail, if he got searched by a cop.
Does anyone have experience in the actual danger from the police in carrying blades?
3/10/2007 11:21pm, #2
- Join Date
- Oct 2006
- Tucson, AZ
- Wing Chun, Hung Gar
If you dont have a concealed weapons permit he'll get into deep **** with a 200$ belt buckle knife on him.
3/11/2007 1:14am, #3
- Join Date
- Dec 2006
- Mixed grappling & fencing
It depends on the state you're visiting. I used to have a slightly-larger-than 3" cheapo folder that I carried everywhere, which is perfectly legal in Indiana. I thought I was going to get in some trouble when I visited St. Louis, because I forgot it in my pocket and took it with me when we visited the Arch... the limit of legality there (meaning in the state) is 3" or less, no spring assist, and no fixed blades. The park ranger who was manning the metal detector decided it looked like less than 3" to him after asking several questions (which I apparently answered satisfactorily), so I got lucky.
Unrelated to your main question, I had some friends who did this just after high school, they were all kinda hippie types, and none of them went armed. They all came back OK. Still, it pays to be careful.
3/11/2007 1:24am, #4
The legally allowable length of a knife blade which one can carry varies from state to state. In Connecticut its under four inches. So have him figure out which states he will be visiting and send him to the local law library. It will be a good way to teach him legal responsibility.
3/11/2007 11:33am, #5
The knowledge of the law varies from officer to officer. In Illinois, most officers I've met have to ask me whether my knife is legal (it is.) There's a general perception that 3" is the length limit even in states where that's not true, like Illinois.
He's PROBABLY ok with a simple one-hand-opener like a basic Spyderco--maybe a Delica or a Native. Nothing too expensive, nothing flashy. I might avoid gimmicky openers like switchblades or torsion bars, too (assisted-openers like the Kershaw Onion series.) Again, those things may be legal in the state he's going to be in, but if he doesn't want to explain it to a judge then reality says he wants the cops to believe it's legal just by looking at it.
http://www.akti.org/PDFS/KnifeLaws.pdf is the AKTI's guide to knife laws. Not very specific, but a good overview written by a lawyer.
http://pweb.netcom.com/~brlevine/sta-law.htm is Bernard Levine's guide, the most well-known. Levine is THE expert on knife collecting, and this guide lets you link state by state, which is really the only way to know what's going on.
Good luck! Don't forget alternatives like pepper spray, but don't assume they're legal in all states, either.
3/11/2007 12:33pm, #6
Sorry if I'm straying from my lanes here dude but with the shoulder mounted throwing knife and belt buckle knife I'd
a) wonder how effective they would even be, taking into consideration if your son has any experience with them. We've seen a lot of videos of cops panicing and despite what I'm sue is consideable practice, can't get their gun out of their holster when it's go time. Is he going to be able to get these knives out in a quick and effective manner?
and B) If I'm willing to bet that if he is found in the possession of a throwing knife and sneaky belt buckle knife, he'd be automatically red flagged or the officer would at the least be very suspicious.
Maybe it'd be better to stick with something nonsuspicious and simple?
And to be a big fat hypocrite when I'm in 'the big city' I carry brass knuckles, sometimes a mini knife hanging off my neck and a cold steel kobum (tanto style) knife attached to the back of my belt ( lenght wise running left to right)
WRT throwing knives, I wonder if you throw a knife at someone "in self defense" how well that would go over.
3/11/2007 2:50pm, #7
Seconded on finding the applicable law for each state. And seconded for exploring other options like OC.
3/11/2007 3:14pm, #8
Buckle Knife seems a little suspicious. A good folding knife with a thumb screw clipped into your knife pocket on the right side of most jeans can be pulled pretty fast. you can loosen the screw a bit so that it opens real fast with a flick motion, but it can be tightened at anytime if there is concern about it being an illegal deployment. And if the clip is visible, then its not considered to be concealed (in Canada). Most important thing is when asked by a cop why he is carrying, do NOT admit its for defense! Its a basic human tool and is carried for emergencies, such as car accidents.
3/11/2007 5:48pm, #9
- Join Date
- Dec 2006
- SA, TX
- McDojo Delux
A buckle knife would probably be considered a concealed and therefore illegal weapon.
A general rule to adhere to is that if there's anything 'exotic' or unusual about a weapon, it's best not to carry it. Nunchaku are illegal in California, despite being terrible weapons, because they're strange and intimidating. Throwing knives, buckle knives, anything assisted open is a bad idea because they exhibit properties conductive to use on people (throwing, concealment, speed of opening). Don't even go with something that has a mean-sounding name, like a Commando or Special Ops. or whatever gimmicky things they put on them. The best thing would be something generic-looking with a plain blade and plain handle; serrations, false edges, scorpion designs, and skulls are bad too.
This leaves us with something very utilitarian. I have a couple relatives who are LEOs, and from what I've been told, if something happens and you have to use a knife, the more unremarkable it is the better. It's a lot easier to believe that the knife you're carrying is a tool, not a weapon, and you'll be viewed and questioned less suspiciously.
3/11/2007 5:50pm, #10
Belt buckle knife? meh. espcially for $200
If you are looking for a knife that is legal size for all states
However, remember more knife laws gear towards "inent" he is uses it against someone else, he better of been of danger of dying. There is no "its ok officer I stabbed him with a legal knife"