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Posted: 12/6/2005 6:58:48 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/6/2005 7:00:18 PM EDT by Bladerunner]
I came to work this morning (military) they had the metal detectors and xray machines set up checking before you could enter the building.

The security guards (contract security) said any knife with a blade over 2.5" was considered a weapon in Virginia and recommended returning it to your vehicle if you had one on you. I had always thought it was 3.5" blade length. Anyone know what Virginia state law says?
Link Posted: 12/6/2005 7:29:18 PM EDT
I heard 3", not positive though.
Link Posted: 12/6/2005 10:08:51 PM EDT
From the VSP page:

What are the laws concerning knives; specifically, the carrying of a non-concealed knife, and are there knife designs, blade sizes, etc., that are prohibited?
Virginia Code Section 18.2-311 describes certain weapons, including some knives, which are illegal to possess in Virginia. Additionally, refer to Virginia Code Section 18.2-308 for specific prohibitions concerning concealed weapons. It is suggested that you contact your county or city authorities to inquire as to whether or not there are applicable local ordinances.

http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+18.2-311

http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+18.2-308

I found this also:

http://leg1.state.va.us/cgi-bin/legp504.exe?000+cod+18.2-308.1

§ 18.2-308.1. Possession of firearm, stun weapon, or other weapon on school property prohibited.

A. If any person possesses any (i) stun weapon or taser as defined in this section; (ii) knife, except a pocket knife having a folding metal blade of less than three inches; or (iii) weapon, including a weapon of like kind, designated in subsection A of § 18.2-308, other than a firearm; upon (a) the property of any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, including buildings and grounds; (b) that portion of any property open to the public and then exclusively used for school-sponsored functions or extracurricular activities while such functions or activities are taking place; or (c) any school bus owned or operated by any such school, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor...

The exemptions set out in § 18.2-308 shall apply, mutatis mutandis, to the provisions of this section. The provisions of this section shall not apply to (i) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of the school's curriculum or activities; (ii) a person possessing a knife customarily used for food preparation or service and using it for such purpose; (iii) persons who possess such weapon or weapons as a part of any program sponsored or facilitated by either the school or any organization authorized by the school to conduct its programs either on or off the school premises; (iv) any law-enforcement officer; (v) any person who possesses a knife or blade which he uses customarily in his trade; (vi) a person who possesses an unloaded firearm that is in a closed container, or a knife having a metal blade, in or upon a motor vehicle, or an unloaded shotgun or rifle in a firearms rack in or upon a motor vehicle; or (vii) a person who has a valid concealed handgun permit and possesses a concealed handgun while in a motor vehicle in a parking lot, traffic circle, or other means of vehicular ingress or egress to the school. For the purposes of this paragraph, "weapon" includes a knife having a metal blade of three inches or longer and "closed container" includes a locked vehicle trunk.


The ONLY thing that mentions blade length is the about SCHOOL property. I think he's full of shit.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 7:07:29 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/7/2005 7:07:52 AM EDT by SHIVAN]
I was told 3" as well. My Benchmade 705 is measured liberally at 2.98"
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 9:30:38 AM EDT
I was told by a cop that the rule of thumb they use is the blade compared to the palm of their hand and he said most judges he's heard about tossed out anything under 4"
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 12:05:14 PM EDT
Well my CRKT M16 is just barely less than 4 inches. If this is illegal then how could an FFL be selling them right over the counter in this state? I bought mine at a gun range. If it was illegal I doubt the dealer would be risking his FFL to sell them.

Link Posted: 12/7/2005 12:34:19 PM EDT

Originally Posted By A_Med:
Well my CRKT M16 is just barely less than 4 inches. If this is illegal then how could an FFL be selling them right over the counter in this state? I bought mine at a gun range. If it was illegal I doubt the dealer would be risking his FFL to sell them.



I bought a 12" Chef knife from Macy's. I can't carry it around with me though.

Link Posted: 12/7/2005 12:56:57 PM EDT
I Was so sure the law was 4" everywhere.... that's why most full size folders have 4" blades, no?
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 3:53:21 PM EDT

Originally Posted By chapperjoe:
I Was so sure the law was 4" everywhere.... that's why most full size folders have 4" blades, no?



Thats what I thought as well.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 4:10:36 PM EDT

Originally Posted By A_Med:

Originally Posted By chapperjoe:
I Was so sure the law was 4" everywhere.... that's why most full size folders have 4" blades, no?



Thats what I thought as well.



I'm still sure too. I'd of walked right passed him that started a hissy fit when he stopped me. Then again, I don't have a job there.....
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 4:24:15 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Bladerunner:
I came to work this morning (military) they had the metal detectors and xray machines set up checking before you could enter the building.

The security guards (contract security) said any knife with a blade over 2.5" was considered a weapon in Virginia and recommended returning it to your vehicle if you had one on you. I had always thought it was 3.5" blade length. Anyone know what Virginia state law says?

In Virginia a 1" blade knife would be considered a weapon if it was used as one. So would a lug wrench. The question should be whether or not it is legal to carry a knife with a blade of whatever length. The answer is that in Virginia it is always legal unless it is expressly prohibited. The previous post regarding knives on school property is the only state law that I have been able to find in over three years of searching and questioning legal authorities. There may however be local laws that could affect you.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 4:34:45 PM EDT
Yeah, I don't agree with the security folks at work and will have to make a point to find the head of security and ask him what he bases the 2.5 inch statement on, if it's even true.

Even when I lived in New York City (Brooklyn) they allowed folders with a blade length of 3.5" (IIRC).

My Benchmade 520SK is 3.42 inches. However, I am not going to risk confiscation ($190 retail) and loss of job just to prove a point. On the guards behalf, I was pleased they warned everyone in advance giving the opportunity to return knives to personal vehicles.

I appreciate the comments and the research into VA state statutes.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 4:36:58 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/7/2005 4:37:49 PM EDT by Bladerunner]

Originally Posted By chapperjoe:

Originally Posted By A_Med:

Originally Posted By chapperjoe:
I Was so sure the law was 4" everywhere.... that's why most full size folders have 4" blades, no?



Thats what I thought as well.



I'm still sure too. I'd of walked right passed him that started a hissy fit when he stopped me. Then again, I don't have a job there.....




I don't think walking past the guards was an option. I would have found myself face down on the lobby floor in handcuffs waiting for the police to show up. The guards at work are generally nice guys/gals, but take their jobs seriously. The prudent approach is to challenge the policy.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 4:50:56 PM EDT
The only thing that worries me is this applies to religious schools. Someone could get creative and count a church's sunday school as being one of those. Then you coulnd't bring knife OR gun (since no guns at church).

Maybe a collapsing baton for sunday school use
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 5:08:12 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SHIVAN:

Originally Posted By A_Med:
Well my CRKT M16 is just barely less than 4 inches. If this is illegal then how could an FFL be selling them right over the counter in this state? I bought mine at a gun range. If it was illegal I doubt the dealer would be risking his FFL to sell them.



I bought a 12" Chef knife from Macy's. I can't carry it around with me though.




Dude, concealed means concealed.


Link Posted: 12/7/2005 5:20:48 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DrMark:

Originally Posted By SHIVAN:

Originally Posted By A_Med:
Well my CRKT M16 is just barely less than 4 inches. If this is illegal then how could an FFL be selling them right over the counter in this state? I bought mine at a gun range. If it was illegal I doubt the dealer would be risking his FFL to sell them.



I bought a 12" Chef knife from Macy's. I can't carry it around with me though.




Dude, concealed means concealed.





It would be better to carry my Wustof around then to carry around my gun with no round in the chamber......
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 5:48:01 PM EDT
In Virginia a 1" blade knife would be considered a weapon if it was used as one. So would a lug wrench. The question should be whether or not it is legal to carry a knife with a blade of whatever length. The answer is that in Virginia it is always legal unless it is expressly prohibited. The previous post regarding knives on school property is the only state law that I have been able to find in over three years of searching and questioning legal authorities. There may however be local laws that could affect you.

great post. not a weapon till used as one or specifically designated. Makes sense.....
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 6:27:45 PM EDT
Tag, my Kershaw is 3.25 in.
Link Posted: 12/7/2005 6:51:46 PM EDT
guess i cant carry around my new Cold Steel SRK

but my gerber firestorm will do just fine...havent measured that yet though...
Link Posted: 12/9/2005 5:56:04 PM EDT
I always heard 4". I have a CRKT M16-14SF. it has a blade of 3.89".
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 9:13:40 AM EDT

Originally Posted By afplayboy18:
guess i cant carry around my new Cold Steel SRK

but my gerber firestorm will do just fine...havent measured that yet though...



How do you figure? The code only deals with carry on school property. other than that, there is no law to violate.
Link Posted: 12/10/2005 5:22:01 PM EDT

Originally Posted By cliffy109:

Originally Posted By afplayboy18:
guess i cant carry around my new Cold Steel SRK

but my gerber firestorm will do just fine...havent measured that yet though...



How do you figure? The code only deals with carry on school property. other than that, there is no law to violate.



well shit...works for me
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 8:43:52 AM EDT
So Bo and Luke Duke would be breaking the law with their Buck 110's in VA with it's 3 3/4" blade?
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 9:59:34 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bhart89:
So Bo and Luke Duke would be breaking the law with their Buck 110's in VA with it's 3 3/4" blade?

Only if they carried the knives concealed or carried them onto the campus listed above.
Link Posted: 12/11/2005 11:39:57 AM EDT
Look at county codes for this one. Henrico for example has a blade length limit for a knife that is accessable while driving a vehicle. Other than that look at 18.2-308. It is kind of complex, unless you have a dagger or a boye knive you are ok. This means a fixed blade with more than one sharp edges or a partial second edge like a Kbar. A folder is not covered. A police officer could argue what constitues a weapon for the section. For this to work it must be concealed from common view to even dream of charging you for this. Clipped in your pocket will not cut it.

This is one of those stupid things that is in the book but never enforced. The security guard probably heard it from someone just like you. If it isnt a company policy or you are still military and carrying it for "duty" kindly tell him where he can go.
Link Posted: 12/22/2005 5:00:21 AM EDT

I came to work this morning (military) they had the metal detectors and xray machines set up checking before you could enter the building.


The thing is, it's not a VA issue with the knife. I've had my pocket knife (gerber folder) confiscated (by a very nice guard, I might add--he held on to it for the day, and found me as I was leaving to give it back) because the installation was federal property, and the you can't bring a knife longer than, if I remember correctly, 2.5" onto federal property (office building).

I am not a lawyer, nor do I play on one TV.
Link Posted: 12/22/2005 5:48:56 AM EDT

Originally Posted By CA2VAyay:
The only thing that worries me is this applies to religious schools. Someone could get creative and count a church's sunday school as being one of those. Then you coulnd't bring knife OR gun (since no guns at church).

Maybe a collapsing baton for sunday school use hr


That's one rough Sunday school
Link Posted: 12/22/2005 12:29:18 PM EDT

Originally Posted By NateG:

I came to work this morning (military) they had the metal detectors and xray machines set up checking before you could enter the building.


The thing is, it's not a VA issue with the knife. I've had my pocket knife (gerber folder) confiscated (by a very nice guard, I might add--he held on to it for the day, and found me as I was leaving to give it back) because the installation was federal property, and the you can't bring a knife longer than, if I remember correctly, 2.5" onto federal property (office building).

I am not a lawyer, nor do I play on one TV.



Nate

This was federal property and 2.5 inches is what the security guard quoted me as the rule. However, he did quote state law as his source. I still have to check this out with the supervisor of the guard force, because I don't think this is correct.

Link Posted: 12/23/2005 5:58:35 AM EDT
My friend is a cop, and he learned in his Police training that the limit for blade length for a concealed knife is 3 inches. However, he told me that if the knife is clipped to your pocket so that the clip is visible (not covered by a coat or long shirt) than it is not considered concealed. In that case, you can carry a larger folding knife. I have seen a guy walking around at the mall with a 5 inch stag handled blade on his hip before, and nothing came of that.

Someone mentioned why would an FFL risk his license selling blades over 3 inches; it is not illeagal to own a knife over 3 inches, just to carry one concealed. There is also a misconception among many that switch blades and auto openers are illegal in VA. They are legal to own, but never legal to carry except for police and probably a few other elites. Spring assist are okay to carry, as long as they are not opened by the press of a button.
Link Posted: 12/23/2005 8:26:17 AM EDT

Originally Posted By Bishop223:
My friend is a cop, and he learned in his Police training that the limit for blade length for a concealed knife is 3 inches. However, he told me that if the knife is clipped to your pocket so that the clip is visible (not covered by a coat or long shirt) than it is not considered concealed. In that case, you can carry a larger folding knife. I have seen a guy walking around at the mall with a 5 inch stag handled blade on his hip before, and nothing came of that.




Could your friend who is a cop let us know what part of the VA code mentions this? Other than carry on school property, there doesn't seem to be anything to coroborate this claim.
Link Posted: 12/23/2005 5:44:47 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 12/23/2005 5:56:45 PM EDT by El_Abogado]

Originally Posted By Bladerunner:

Originally Posted By NateG:

I came to work this morning (military) they had the metal detectors and xray machines set up checking before you could enter the building.


The thing is, it's not a VA issue with the knife. I've had my pocket knife (gerber folder) confiscated (by a very nice guard, I might add--he held on to it for the day, and found me as I was leaving to give it back) because the installation was federal property, and the you can't bring a knife longer than, if I remember correctly, 2.5" onto federal property (office building).

I am not a lawyer, nor do I play on one TV.



Nate

This was federal property and 2.5 inches is what the security guard quoted me as the rule. However, he did quote state law as his source. I still have to check this out with the supervisor of the guard force, because I don't think this is correct.




The guard is probably mistaken, ore maybe full of shit. The problem is that the relevant federal statute on dangerous or deadly weapons is ambiguous, but states (IIRC) that in no case will a pocket knife with a blade of less than 2 1/2" be considered a deadly weapon. The law DOES NOT mean that a blade over 2 1/2" is a deadly weapon, but it may be depending upon the possessor's intent. Of course, the same applies to blades of less than 2/5" too. . . .

ETA: Found the statute, 18 U.S.C. 930:


§ 930. Possession of firearms and dangerous weapons in Federal facilities

(a) Except as provided in subsection (d), whoever knowingly possesses or causes to be present a firearm or other dangerous weapon in a Federal facility (other than a Federal court facility), or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 1 year, or both.

(b) Whoever, with intent that a firearm or other dangerous weapon be used in the commission of a crime, knowingly possesses or causes to be present such firearm or dangerous weapon in a Federal facility, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than 5 years, or both.

(c) A person who kills any person in the course of a violation of subsection (a) or (b), or in the course of an attack on a Federal facility involving the use of a firearm or other dangerous weapon, or attempts or conspires to do such an act, shall be punished as provided in sections 1111, 1112, 1113, and 1117 [18 USCS §§ 1111, 1112, 1113, and 1117].

(d) Subsection (a) shall not apply to--
(1) the lawful performance of official duties by an officer, agent, or employee of the United States, a State, or a political subdivision thereof, who is authorized by law to engage in or supervise the prevention, detection, investigation, or prosecution of any violation of law;
(2) the possession of a firearm or other dangerous weapon by a Federal official or a member of the Armed Forces if such possession is authorized by law; or
(3) the lawful carrying of firearms or other dangerous weapons in a Federal facility incident to hunting or other lawful purposes.

(e) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), whoever knowingly possesses or causes to be present a firearm in a Federal court facility, or attempts to do so, shall be fined under this title, imprisoned not more than 2 years, or both.
(2) Paragraph (1) shall not apply to conduct which is described in paragraph (1) or (2) of subsection (d).

(f) Nothing in this section limits the power of a court of the United States to punish for contempt or to promulgate rules or orders regulating, restricting, or prohibiting the possession of weapons within any building housing such court or any of its proceedings, or upon any grounds appurtenant to such building.

(g) As used in this section:
(1) The term "Federal facility" means a building or part thereof owned or leased by the Federal Government, where Federal employees are regularly present for the purpose of performing their official duties.
(2) The term "dangerous weapon" means a weapon, device, instrument, material, or substance, animate or inanimate, that is used for, or is readily capable of, causing death or serious bodily injury, except that such term does not include a pocket knife with a blade of less than 2 1/2 inches in length.
(3) The term "Federal court facility" means the courtroom, judges' chambers, witness rooms, jury deliberation rooms, attorney conference rooms, prisoner holding cells, offices of the court clerks, the United States attorney, and the United States marshal, probation and parole offices, and adjoining corridors of any court of the United States.

(h) Notice of the provisions of subsections (a) and (b) shall be posted conspicuously at each public entrance to each Federal facility, and notice of subsection (e) shall be posted conspicuously at each public entrance to each Federal court facility, and no person shall be convicted of an offense under subsection (a) or (e) with respect to a Federal facility if such notice is not so posted at such facility, unless such person had actual notice of subsection (a) or (e), as the case may be.



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