Warning

 

Close

Confirm Action

Are you sure you wish to do this?

Confirm Cancel
Member Login
Posted: 1/23/2006 1:53:07 PM EDT
Is there a definitive Code of Virginia which states it is illegal to own an automatic knife?
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 2:53:11 PM EDT
§ 18.2-311. Prohibiting the selling or having in possession blackjacks, etc.

If any person sells or barters, or exhibits for sale or for barter, or gives or furnishes, or causes to be sold, bartered, given or furnished, or has in his possession, or under his control, with the intent of selling, bartering, giving or furnishing, any blackjack, brass or metal knucks, any disc of whatever configuration having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, or like weapons, such person shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor. The having in one's possession of any such weapon shall be prima facie evidence, except in the case of a conservator of the peace, of his intent to sell, barter, give or furnish the same.

(Code 1950, § 18.1-271; 1960, c. 358; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 1985, c. 394; 1988, c. 359.)

Link Posted: 1/23/2006 3:26:03 PM EDT

Originally Posted By long-rifle-tactical:
§ 18.2-311. Prohibiting the selling or having in possession blackjacks, etc.

If any person sells or barters, or exhibits for sale or for barter, or gives or furnishes, or causes to be sold, bartered, given or furnished, or has in his possession, or under his control, with the intent of selling, bartering, giving or furnishing, any blackjack, brass or metal knucks, any disc of whatever configuration having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, or like weapons, such person shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanor. The having in one's possession of any such weapon shall be prima facie evidence, except in the case of a conservator of the peace, of his intent to sell, barter, give or furnish the same.

(Code 1950, § 18.1-271; 1960, c. 358; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 1985, c. 394; 1988, c. 359.)




So let me get this straight, it's against the law to sell a switchblade (auto knife) and simple possession of a switchblade (auto knife) is considered evidence of "intent to sell"?

Link Posted: 1/23/2006 5:52:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Bladerunner:
So let me get this straight, it's against the law to sell a switchblade (auto knife) and simple possession of a switchblade (auto knife) is considered evidence of "intent to sell"?



That's how I read it.



Link Posted: 1/23/2006 7:10:59 PM EDT
What is established as the definition of "conservator of the peace"
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 8:35:24 PM EDT

Originally Posted By pevrs114:
What is established as the definition of "conservator of the peace"


Wears a badge.
Link Posted: 1/23/2006 9:13:51 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hoplophile:

Originally Posted By pevrs114:
What is established as the definition of "conservator of the peace"


Wears a badge.



Link Posted: 1/24/2006 2:38:54 AM EDT
I have been told that Active Duty military "while on duty" are covered as a consevator of the peace. However, I haven't seen this in writing anywhere. I was told this by sales clerks at Extreme Outfitters in Norfolk. He stated their policy is to sell to active law enforcement, firemen, and active duty military.
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 5:53:01 AM EDT
What constitutes a 'switchblade'? A Kershaw Chive?
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 6:31:04 AM EDT

Originally Posted By long-rifle-tactical:
§ 18.2-311. Prohibiting the selling or having in possession blackjacks, etc.

If any person sells or barters, or exhibits for sale or for barter, or gives or furnishes, or causes to be sold, bartered, given or furnished, or has in his possession, or under his control, with the intent of selling, bartering, giving or furnishing, any blackjack, brass or metal knucks, any disc of whatever configuration having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart switchblade knife, ballistic knife, or like weapons, such person shall be guilty of a Class 4 misdemeanorThe having in one's possession of any such weapon shall be prima facie evidence, except in the case of a conservator of the peace, of his intent to sell, barter, give or furnish the same.

(Code 1950, § 18.1-271; 1960, c. 358; 1975, cc. 14, 15; 1985, c. 394; 1988, c. 359.)



This sensible law is obviously meant to prevent the proliferation of Irish barkeepers, bootlegging gangsters, ninjas and stilleto equipped, dancing teen gang members from the early 60's.

Link Posted: 1/24/2006 6:52:20 AM EDT
This is where my concern comes from. My unit issued me one, class 9 so we could keep it. I still maintain an active duty ID card, but am wary of carrying it now that I'm home. I'm tempted to carry it when I'm working the gut box, but I really don't want a class 4 misdemeanor over a knife, especially since I own the non-auto version too.

Link Posted: 1/24/2006 8:02:09 AM EDT
Is there a technical/legal distinction between "switchblade", etc. and "spring assisted" folding knives?
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 8:16:39 AM EDT

Originally Posted By BlackScot:
Is there a technical/legal distinction between "switchblade", etc. and "spring assisted" folding knives?



Technically, sure... A switchblade will open completely under the force of a spring (no blade movement input by the user necessary) once a catch is released. A spring-assisted knife requires user input to begin the blade motion, after which the spring assists the opening.

Legally, I don't know. But I do see spring assisted for sale everywhere, gun shows included, and no authorities seem to mind. The same knife dealers typically won't sell you a switchblade.

Link Posted: 1/24/2006 10:31:32 AM EDT
I've used my Chive around two or three game wardens and local police, they've never said a word.
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 12:58:13 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Burley:
I've used my Chive around two or three game wardens and local police, they've never said a word.



I assume you were in SoVA? Try that up here and you'll have a SWAT team deployment and maybe a Code 3 call to HRT at Quantico.

Link Posted: 1/24/2006 4:35:41 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SHIVAN:

Originally Posted By Burley:
I've used my Chive around two or three game wardens and local police, they've never said a word.



I assume you were in SoVA? Try that up here and you'll have a SWAT team deployment and maybe a Code 3 call to HRT at Quantico.




You forgot the Dog part.

Danny

J/K
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 6:47:19 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/24/2006 6:55:04 PM EDT by KogaShuko]
"Prima Facie" means first glance.

The only other code or proceeding that I have heard "Prima Facie" used is in a Batson Challenge. In that case the party accused of that has a chance to provide proof of why they are striking a jurior. Totally different context but first glance normally doesnt go well with beyond a reasonable doubt.

If you can prove or argue you have it for another purpose you really dont have to worry about first glance. If you carry it in your pocket clipped visibly every day I dont see how that can be constrewed as you selling it. Now if you own a pawn shop or at a gun show and it is sitting on a table with other stuff you are going to sell then they basically dont have to wait for you to sell the damn thing to seize it and site you.

As far as concervator of the peace I think it refears to a police officer or law enforcement agent. However, it is important to note that a notary public is considered a conservator of the peace. This is not explicitly outlines in the letter of this law like it is others so I could see that being a problem also.
Link Posted: 1/24/2006 7:14:09 PM EDT

Originally Posted By SHIVAN:

Originally Posted By Burley:
I've used my Chive around two or three game wardens and local police, they've never said a word.



I assume you were in SoVA? Try that up here and you'll have a SWAT team deployment and maybe a Code 3 call to HRT at Quantico.




You got me. I try to stay west of Lynchburg.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 12:52:53 PM EDT
You can go here for the code of Virginia: http://leg1.state.va.us/000/src.htm
The section covering Conserators of the peace is 19.2-12 through 19.2-15. You can just enter the code section, it has it word for word, I verifed it with my copy of the code book. If you are interested in other code sections you can search by subject.
Link Posted: 1/25/2006 2:01:46 PM EDT
LOL I love how these things contradict theirselves, 19.2-12 lists concervators and then other sections state that notary publics are concevators of the peace even though it isnt even mention in 19.2-12. Oh well go figure. Just like using "Prima Facie" in a friggin criminal code.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 4:33:20 AM EDT
We used to sell these at the gunshop. Sign we posted said "qualified individuals only" - but by that we applied the following standard: active, full-time law enforcement WITH arrest powers.

Could the definition in the law include other people like Notaries? Maybe - but why would a store take a chance at getting in trouble over such a small product market? By following "arrest powers" standard, we never got in trouble. Then the store changed hands & dropped switchblades.

The Ken Onion knives are nothing like switchblades & do not open by gravity and are only spring assisted. 100% OK to buy & own. That's my story and I am sticking to it.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 9:39:25 AM EDT
i have a MOD Kpack auto bought it from extreme outfiters juat over a year ago. love it but i have to send it back. the thumb stud fell off. but i have it because i am a firefighter/medic, we are allowed to carry them.
Link Posted: 1/26/2006 3:33:53 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 1/26/2006 3:36:12 PM EDT by KogaShuko]
Having it really isnt a big thing since they are easy to get and at the most a class 4 (if not concealed) is only a fine. That is it. I would guess that not many people have been charged with that. Now if you have a $4 switch blade hidden in your pocket when you are arrested for robbing people you are probably going to get hit for having a concealed weapon.

Not saying carry it but if you are doing a job that needs it, I wouldnt freak about it.

I went to a store that wouldnt sell or even let me look at the thing while I was on active duty. I dont shop with them now for a number of reasons that being one of them.
Link Posted: 2/12/2006 4:47:31 PM EDT
I don't know if there is any truth to this, but I remember hearing somewhere (maybe my CCW class) that a two-year auto-knife/concealed carrying of an auto knife permit can be obtained......


Anybody know if this is true or not? I'm thinking about making a few phone calls tomorrow to find out for sure, b/c I'd like to be able to carry my autos w/out "fear" when I travel to the "stricter" parts of this here great state (LEOs I know could care less about what blades I carry, except for asking where they can get one like it ).
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 11:03:50 AM EDT
Prima facie

Evidence that is sufficient to raise a presumption of fact or to establish the fact in question unless rebutted.

All the commonwealth has to do is show you had the item to gain a conviction.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 4:49:22 PM EDT

Originally Posted By DrMark:

Originally Posted By BlackScot:
Is there a technical/legal distinction between "switchblade", etc. and "spring assisted" folding knives?



Technically, sure... A switchblade will open completely under the force of a spring (no blade movement input by the user necessary) once a catch is released. A spring-assisted knife requires user input to begin the blade motion, after which the spring assists the opening.

Legally, I don't know. But I do see spring assisted for sale everywhere, gun shows included, and no authorities seem to mind. The same knife dealers typically won't sell you a switchblade.





You got it. If the user must move the blade to open the knife it is not considered a switchblade but a spring assisted knife. If you press a button and it open that is illegal unless you are a :
A conservator of the peace is any LEO, fireman-emergancy response-EMT, trained private security personel only while on the job.
Riggers-while only on the job, 'on duty' military personel while on fed property or on assisgnment. 'Collectors, but not on thier person except for intransit to and from shows and/or fuctions pertaining to collecting of...'

As explained to me by former CLEO of the Hampton P.D. - C. Townsend.
Link Posted: 2/14/2006 5:12:16 PM EDT
I agree with einheit13. Like with any stop by a LEO and situation, its officer discretion. But if your worried email the Commonwealth for clarification.
Link Posted: 2/15/2006 6:36:50 PM EDT
I heard some time ago, they were legal to own (you could have them in your house), but they could not be carried. Sounds stupid but so does the law as stated on page one.

Bomber
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 7:48:51 AM EDT
Link Posted: 2/16/2006 8:25:42 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 2/16/2006 8:27:37 PM EDT by KogaShuko]
Prima Facia has a big issue. In this case it is has a even bigger issue than the word persumption in the DUI code. Since you having the thing alwasy makes it selling and no other standard I would think this law would go away if ever challenged. Francis Vs Franklin basically says you cant convict someone of a criminal offence based on a persumption or prima facia since it puts the burden of proof on the accused - big no no. Many district court judges will not convict on .08 without other evidence much less on a code that is only a persumption. Dont conceal it and you will probably never have a problem. Dont stand on teh street corner selling them and you will probably never have a problem.

Finally, there is a federal switch blade knife code of some sort I would check out Title 15 Chapter 29 sec1243. The thing is cryptic as hell and the use of commas doesnt make it clear rather if it is all the united states or just indian reservations. Anyway, apparently you are exempt if your blade is shorter than 3 inches and you only have one arm also. I dont know who would charge for this one.

EDIT- after reading the federal statue as a whole and ignoreing the confusing use of commas apparently it is only special territories and indian reservations. Also dont carry it across state lines.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 10:46:59 AM EDT
I don't know much about how actual LEOs would react to it, but i do know that when we were being shipped back stateside, my unit (which everone in it was issued a switchblade) was told that they are legal for military to have, and thats why when we did the big ol' brass and ammo check to make sure no one had a hand grenade in their boot, they didnt take our knives.
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 11:26:44 AM EDT
I don't understand the whole issue or facination with switchblades.
They are not all that fast to open, and my modified Benchmade Griptillian opens faster than a switchblade, because I modified the thumbhole to be a wave action. That sucker is fast!!!

Of course, there should be no restrictions on ownership, but I could never justify to myself the expenditure of good money on a switchblade. Hell the Benchmades are expensive as it is, even with the employee discounts......
Link Posted: 2/27/2006 2:53:52 PM EDT

Originally Posted By Hydguy:
I don't understand the whole issue or facination with switchblades.
They are not all that fast to open, and my modified Benchmade Griptillian opens faster than a switchblade, because I modified the thumbhole to be a wave action. That sucker is fast!!!

Of course, there should be no restrictions on ownership, but I could never justify to myself the expenditure of good money on a switchblade. Hell the Benchmades are expensive as it is, even with the employee discounts......



For a non black-market blade the price should not be over 100.00 and that is a pretty good knife, some are for more costly but then you are talking a show quality knife.

Now if you are talking a MicroTech, then around 120.00 - 250.00 could be a good market price.

With a little practice you can be very fast with one, not that I own a switch blade.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 7:05:24 PM EDT
Way I see it, you can own it legally, but are not allowed to buy it or carry it on your person. So it is supposed to materialize in your home out of thin air.h.gif Very dumb law if you ask me, and I agree that the prima clause would not stand in a judicial review, possibly never make it past the circuit level. But you never know.

What I DO know is they are VERY illegal in Germany apparently. 2 years ago my father was traveling from the US to Greece through Frankfurt. Due to a delay, he had to claim his baggage at Frankfurt, and check it in again, at which point they found the knife. (It was a gift from a federal LEO in Virginia) The cops (customs) let him go on, but kept the knife and told him that on the way back he would have a criminal charge waiting for him. Not sure if they did it, though the Germans are thorough and methodical in everything. (I was born there.) In any case, he changed his ticket to return through London, and now will not travel with Lufthansa if his life depended on it. I guess he knows enough of the Germans, having spent 8 years there, to take them at their word.
Link Posted: 3/1/2006 11:10:48 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/1/2006 11:14:39 PM EDT by larrycwdc]

Originally Posted By aegean:
What I DO know is they are VERY illegal in Germany apparently.


I can't comment on what your father was told, nor on the experience he reported. The information, however, does not reflect the current law, nor the much looser law that was passed in the mid 1970s. Sporting goods stores, tobacco stores, and 'knick knack' stores generally have an assortment of switchblades eligible for purchase by anyone ... and in certain cases where the store is licensed to sell regulated weapons, other switchblade knives that are regulated. Since 2003, gravity knives, butterfly knives, and certain other knives are prohibited from purchase.

Current German law -- even after being tightened up in 2003 (using much of the same bogus rationale that antis over here use) -- allows the purchase, ownership, possession, use, and carrying of switchblades without any special permit or authorization except for the following types:
  • those, the blades of which spring forward <out of the handle>*; or

  • those whereby the blade springs out sideways <from the handle> and the portion of the blade extending beyond the handle:
    - is longer than 8.5 cm. <ca. 3 3/8 in> or;
    - does not measure at least 20% of their length at their midpoint or;
    - has a sharpened edge on both sides and;
    - such blades do not exhibit a continuous back, that tapers towards the sharpened edge.

  • * Switchblade knives are defined in the law as knives, the blades of which spring out <of the handle> by pressure on a button or lever and with which the blade can be locked.


(The following German text is divided between the law itself (Waffengesetz, WaffG 2002) and an attached list containing specific characteristics (Anlage 2, zu § 2 Abs. 2 bis 4, Waffenliste):

Springmesser
  • bei denen die Klinge nach vorne rausschnellt,
    (Springmesser sind Messer, deren Klingen auf Knopf- oder Hebeldruck hervorschnellen und hierdurch festgestellt werden können)

  • bei denen die Klinge seitlich herausspringt und der aus dem Griff herausragende Teil der Klinge:
    - länger als 8,5 cm ist,
    - in der Mitte mindestens eine Breite von 20 vom Hundert ihrer Länge aufweist,
    - nicht zweiseitig geschliffen ist und
    - einen durchgehenden Rücken hat, der sich zur Schneide hin verjüngt.


Just an FYI ...
Link Posted: 3/2/2006 5:57:11 AM EDT
I am not sure I should even post this but,

I am in NOVA and could careless about them. I mean a knife is a knife. No matter how fast it opens. Thats my opinion anyway. I am not one to stack charges for the sake of a monthly report. Now, I will tell you that the prevailing atitude in this area is one of fear. The shit they teach you to do is crazy. I recently had a discussion with a instructor who was teaching the tactic of drawing down and proning out everyone you encounter that is carrying a firearm. Wether its open carry, concealed or what. Now, to me this seems crazy, I am from the southern part of the state and have been aroud firearms all my life. Its just a normal thing to carry one. My point is that I would not want to lay down on the ground and get cuffed just for carrying a gun. There statement, we would rather deal with complaints than compromise safety. I appreciate that attitude for sure but it seems extreme to me. I mean some situations would warrant that, but not all. Anyway, those auto knives are cool, the only downside is cost, and my tendency to lose them
Link Posted: 3/9/2006 3:06:00 PM EDT
[Last Edit: 3/9/2006 4:41:28 PM EDT by DragoMuseveni]
Never mind, figured it out my self.
Link Posted: 3/9/2006 8:01:37 PM EDT
21boom, who were you with? Sounds like the same grenade in the shoe speech I got. Then they said that the benchmade autos were allowed. Apparently the new ones also have USA engraved in them.
Link Posted: 3/20/2006 12:57:49 PM EDT
Bravo Company, 276th Engineer Bn. (Combat) I was in 1st platoon black sheep.
Top Top