Illegal knife confiscation

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jackknifeh
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Illegal knife confiscation

Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:36 pm

What happens to you if your knife is confiscated by a LEO. Are you arrested and charged? Do you go to jail and need to get bailed out? Do they just take the knife and say thanks? Do you ever get the knife back? If they can take the knife I'd assume you had broken a law serious enough to at least get a ticket and be fined.

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The Deacon
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Postby The Deacon » Thu Jan 27, 2011 3:44 pm

Too vague a question to answer. People have had perfectly legal knives confiscated by LEOs who, at best were over zealous and at worst outright thieves. In some cases, if the officer was in the former category, they eventually got the knife back. Other people have had totally illegal knives confiscated and been arrested, tried, and convicted. Still others have had knives that would have normally been legal but were "situationally illegal" because they were being carried during the commission of a crime confiscated and "possession of a dangerous weapon" charges added to whatever else they were being booked for.
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jackknifeh
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Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:15 pm

Thanks Deacon. I can see where the question is vague but your answer did cover a lot of what I'm curious about. Trying to be less vague let's say I had a 3 1/4" blade knife in my pocket where 3" is the maximum legal size. An LEO saw the knife clip in my pocket and asked to see it. I'm sure different areas have different laws and punishments. I guess I was curious if I could be arrested and hauled to jail just for having it in my pocket or just given a ticket like for speeding. No crime is being committed, I could be just standing waiting for a cab or something.

Jack

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ChrisR
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Postby ChrisR » Thu Jan 27, 2011 4:50 pm

Over here the situation is equally vague and open to interpretation but there are a few things you can do. Basically an LEO has the right to confiscate anything that he considers to be evidence of a crime (to protect the chain of evidence) but he also has discretion as to whether he decides to charge you with an offence. He might just decide to let you off and confiscate the article and give you a verbal warning - or he could actually charge you if he felt it was necessary. If he doesn't charge you then I would personally chat with him in a friendly way and maintain that you thought the knife was legal and you'd like the ability to reclaim it at a later date, if possible. Note down the officer's name, number and his station and then go there at a later date (sooner rather than later) and ask politely to see a senior officer regarding reclaiming property that you think was seized in error. Don't accuse anyone of being heavy-handed and don't force the LEO into a corner ... just be polite but insist that they show you the statute that they think you broke and if they can't do it to your satisfaction then please return your property.

They key is to be very polite but be sure of your rights ... don't accuse anyone of anything and don't make anyone feel that they did anything wrong ... give them plenty of scope to back down without embarrassment :)

EDIT: just re-read your post ... in your case I think I'd leave it at that - the officer obviously decided to give you the benefit of the doubt and not take it further - so he did you a big favour ;)
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Postby The Deacon » Thu Jan 27, 2011 5:29 pm

jackknifeh wrote:Thanks Deacon. I can see where the question is vague but your answer did cover a lot of what I'm curious about. Trying to be less vague let's say I had a 3 1/4" blade knife in my pocket where 3" is the maximum legal size. An LEO saw the knife clip in my pocket and asked to see it. I'm sure different areas have different laws and punishments. I guess I was curious if I could be arrested and hauled to jail just for having it in my pocket or just given a ticket like for speeding. No crime is being committed, I could be just standing waiting for a cab or something.

Jack
The "general rule" would be that, unless you were "impersonating an *******" or the LEO was in a particularly foul mood and looking for someone to bully, it's pretty unlikely that he'd ask to see it and equally unlikely he'd be checking it with a ruler if he did. My experience with LEOs is that 80% of them are quite decent unless you really go out of your way to push their buttons, 10% can be decent or not, depending on their mood, and the other 10% should be in jail themselves.

But, assuming the knife was "discovered" and was illegal to carry, again, it would depend. Most common scenario would be - cop takes knife, end of story. But other possible scenarios would be you get a ticket and have to pay a fine, or you get arrested. Generally speaking, if it's a local law, worst case would be ticket and fine. If it's state law, then it could be more serious.

Simplest solution, if you worry about such things, is to only carry what's legal.
Paul
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Postby tonydahose » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:06 pm

easiest way to find out is to call the local police dept. and ask them what is legal and what is the ramification if you break that law.
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jackknifeh
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Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:21 pm

Thanks guys.

This never happened to me. I was just wondering. You have satisfied my curiosity. I've tried to read state laws and the only thing that accomplished for me was confusion. :confused: I've been really curious about an officer taking a knife and that is all. Reminded me of the time my wife was getting a speeding ticket and I asked how to pay for it because we were 200 miles from home. He said go to court if we wanted to travel, send a check, or give him $40 cash (he wouldn't take the check I offered. :( I would have loved to end it with that).

Anyway, thanks again for the replies and I'll drop it for now.

Jack

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Postby RIOT » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:21 pm

i made the stupid mistake of buying a Citadel, Embassy & a small Spyderfly.

they are worthless for me to have but it seems like i cant sell them either.

is it OK to put these types of knives on ebay ?

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Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:38 pm

RIOT wrote:i made the stupid mistake of buying a Citadel, Embassy & a small Spyderfly.

they are worthless for me to have but it seems like i cant sell them either.

is it OK to put these types of knives on ebay ?
Why are they useless?

Jack

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Postby tonydahose » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:40 pm

no you cant sell them on ebay, but you can send them to me :)
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Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:43 pm

tonydahose wrote:no you cant sell them on ebay, but you can send them to me :)
And I thought there weren't any nice guys left. :D

Jack

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Postby RIOT » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:44 pm

jackknifeh wrote:Why are they useless?

Jack
i cant carry them legally, they just sit in a safe.
tonydahose wrote:no you cant sell them on ebay, but you can send them to me :)
where can i sell them ?

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jackknifeh
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Postby jackknifeh » Thu Jan 27, 2011 6:47 pm

[quote="RIOT"]i cant carry them legally, they just sit in a safe.


That's what I was afraid of. That is a **** shame if I've ever heard one.

Jack

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Postby jzmtl » Thu Jan 27, 2011 7:17 pm

I know in one case, a small shop in NYC (before the recent fiasco) was raided by cops and have most of his knives taken. One day a cop brought a knife for him to sharpen, and that turned out be one of the knives that was "confiscated".

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Postby tonydahose » Thu Jan 27, 2011 8:10 pm

law enforcement officers and one handed people can legally carry switch blades so that is your selling market Will :D i think you will have more luck with the former of the 2 choices :p .
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Postby Creepo » Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:04 am

RIOT wrote:where can i sell them ?
In the forums in the appropriate selling section for example.
And AFAIK you can't use USPS to ship autos or balis so you'll have to use another service when you send them.

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Postby SlideTechnik » Fri Jan 28, 2011 2:14 am

If a police officer confiscates a knife, ask for a reciept or documentation detailing the property he took from you, otherwise you may never see it again.

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Postby ceya » Sat Jan 29, 2011 11:08 am

jzmtl wrote:I know in one case, a small shop in NYC (before the recent fiasco) was raided by cops and have most of his knives taken. One day a cop brought a knife for him to sharpen, and that turned out be one of the knives that was "confiscated".
What shop was this?

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Postby jzmtl » Sat Jan 29, 2011 12:08 pm

Don't remember, it was two years or so back, but I heard it's no longer selling knives, or out of business altogether.

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Postby Blerv » Sat Jan 29, 2011 2:36 pm

There was someone on this forum with a Harpy in NY a while back who had it taken from him. The cop obviously saw the glistening clip.

If I recall his particular story involved a night in jail and $2,000+ in attorney fees. He could have probably saved money on such a charge but most people don't dance with record charges involving weapons.

I could have gotten the story wrong. Even if there's a 5% chance I'll end up in jail I'm not going to risk it. I can carry up to a 3.5" blade. Even if it was 3" that's a serious tool to have on your person.

To each his/her own. I don't screw with the law. I don't want to be made an example for an overzealous LEO or a change in knife policies.
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