Is a Koppo Stick a "club" in Texas?


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stephen_g22
March 2, 2003, 09:10 PM
I have recently acquired a Koppo Stick made from oak and think it is a great idea to have where you can't have knives, guns, metallic weapons, etc. I think it would be great for carrying to and from jury duty for example.

Anyone thinking "What the heck is a koppo stick?" go to this link http://www.donrearic.com/koppostick.html

The Texas Penal code states that clubs are illegal.
http://www.capitol.state.tx.us/statutes/pe/pe0004600.html#pe001.46.01

1) "Club" means an instrument that is specially designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument, and includes but is not limited to the following:

(A) blackjack;

(B) nightstick;

(C) mace;

(D) tomahawk.


Properly used, a koppo stick, kubotan etc could be used to inflict serious bodily injury or death. So does that mean that it is a club?

I don't even want to flirt with skirting the law because I do not want to jepordize my CHL.

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Gray_Fallen
March 3, 2003, 12:13 PM
Go over to www.selfdefenseforums.com and ask your question there, they are a lot more Koppo understanding and knowing people over there,a nd one, ore more, of them should be able to help you out. Don Rearic posts there.

El Tejon
March 3, 2003, 12:32 PM
Clubs, by means of that definition, are illegal in Tejas?!? Yikes. How about a big, ol' 1911? Anyone have any caselaw?

brownie0486
March 3, 2003, 01:40 PM
A stick is not a club.

A club by definition in most states is an object thats fatter on one end than the other [ like billy clubs that were used by cops in the past or a baseball bat ].

A stick is not regulated under the dangerous weapons statutes of most states and would fall under those statutes.

They took billy clubs away from the cops. They were larger on one end. The cops now carry a stick because clubs are illegal and they obey and are restricted to the same items as the rest of us. They are not exempt from the laws.

If a stick was illegal to carry they would not be carrying them.

If you use the stick to defend yourself with and the defense was justifiable otherwise you should not have a problem unless you speak without an atty: present [ never ], or you continued to whack the perp after it was unnecessary [different charges here ].

You may be charged by an aggressive DA for using a stick [ he'll call it a club ] but then you stand that chance no matter what you use that they will charge you with some statute violation.

Remember that cops are not exempt from the laws and if they can carry one it must not be a violation of that states statutes.
Imagine the dept he works for being sued because he used his stick on someone?

Others may disagree but they need to show me the cops are specifically listed as exempt before they challenge.

Brownie

ahenry
March 3, 2003, 02:57 PM
They took billy clubs away from the cops. They were larger on one end. The cops now carry a stick because clubs are illegal and they obey and are restricted to the same items as the rest of us. They are not exempt from the laws...If a stick was illegal to carry they would not be carrying them...Remember that cops are not exempt from the laws and if they can carry one it must not be a violation of that states statutes. Brownie, do you think about what you write? Of course police are exempt from laws (at least some). Don’t the police carry pistols in areas where non-law enforcement is not allowed to? Come on, think about what you write.

To be specific (and perhaps this is what you were trying to say?), Texas law specifically exempts peace officers from the weapons section of the Penal code.


A club by definition in most states is an object thats fatter on one end than the other [ like billy clubs that were used by cops in the past or a baseball bat ]. If you read the law as posted, you would see that your definition of "club" is not at all the states definition. :rolleyes:

brownie0486
March 3, 2003, 03:36 PM
No, the definition of a club is in the Blacks Law dictionary.

Unless specifically stated so in the statutes cops are not exempt from any laws in the states they reside.

Many jurisdictions allow cops to "carry on the badge" and some do not even have weapons permits like civilians need for when they aren't on duty.

Again, cops obey all the laws we "civilians" do unless specifically listed in that statute.

In my state the cops think they exempt from auto knife laws and can carry an auto opener. WRONG--because they believe they can, and do, or because they aren't held to task or charged for that action does not mean they are exempt.

What people think the cops can do because they see them do it and what they can do lawfully by statute are two different animals in most cases.

So yes, I think about what I write and know quite a bit having been an LE for 9 years on two depts. and having been through the academy. We are subject to the general laws as all others are with FEW exceptions which are clearly spelled out.

I've gone round and round about this with cops over the years and when the statutes are brought out and attys: contacted they learn that they have been in violation of the very laws they enforce on others.

"of course cops are exempt from the laws"?
Unless you can show me the exemption within the statute we are discussing I'd be inclined to believe they are not exempt.
There are actually very few exemptions for LE and of course there are some but they are clearly spelled out in the pertinent statute.

The Texas statute says "nightstick", not stick. A nightstick is not a stick off the ground or a dowel you buy at the hardware store. Not that a DA would not charge you but then you can always be charged with anything they want to try you for and they do this frequently actually figuring they'll let the jury decide.

On another note--if a stick were illegal could you carry a cane around in public? What is a cane? a stick with a curve at the end.
The nature of the statute does not infer a "stick" per se. Can it be interpreted that way, yes, but that does not make the inference correct or lawful.

It borders on the ridiculous that a stick be considered a dangerous weapon in and of itself. If that were true the stick I throw the dog at the beach would be a deadly weapon and I could be charged with possessing same? Come on folks, it's not the stick we are talking about but how it was used that may be a crime. The act of picking up a stick on the ground is not illegal and someone would be hard pressed to prove the lawmakers in that state meant it to mean that literally.

I can see it now, granny out with fido in the front yard playing retrieve the stick and is arrest by a passing officer under their dangerous weapons statutes. Yup, thats what you got there, a granny gone wild with a stick [ deadly weapon].

Not so--ya, I think about what I write. Some fact from case law and alot of common sense about what the laws intent was written for.

The statue read--"(1) "Club" means an instrument that is specially designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument, and includes but is not limited to the following:
(A) blackjack;
(B) nightstick;
(C) mace;
(D) tomahawk.

It says "specifically designed". Did nature specifically design it's trees to create bludgeoning devices [ sticks ]? A stick on the ground which could be used for defense or dowel, curtain rod etc was not specifically designed for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury. It includes these items specifically but does not linit the law to them.

Now we get to where the law goes from there. The cops nightstick was specifically designed for whacking people, the civilians can't have one in their possesion in public or use same by statute.

Again, show me where a "stick" is against the law as written and put up here on this post. I see no wording mentioning "stick" . do see nightstick but that is a device specifically designed to inflict injury which the statute mentions.

A little common sense goes a long way.

Brownie

ahenry
March 3, 2003, 04:39 PM
The Texas statute says "nightstick", not stick. Again, please read the law. The penal code defines the term, Black’s law notwithstanding. I once again refer you to the statute, which I will quote, 46.01. Definitions
In this chapter:
(1) "Club" means an instrument that is specially designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument...

I now refer to your quote, “A club by definition in most states is an object thats fatter on one end than the other [ like billy clubs that were used by cops in the past or a baseball bat ]” and note that you must not have read the state statute, as it makes no mention of size or shape of the instrument when defining the term. As further proof I would refer you to the list of “clubs” given in the statute (this would require that you read it first). As you can see according to state law a tomahawk is a club. I don’t know about you, but I’ve never seen a tomahawk that is “fatter on one end than the other” like a billy club...or a baseball bat. Again I suggest you think and read the pertinent information before pontification.

Again, cops obey all the laws we "civilians" do unless specifically listed in that statute. I thought that might have been what you were trying to say, I do agree with that statement. Laws often provide exemptions to LEO’s, but they are only exempted when the law states they are.

A little common sense goes a long way. I completely agree. A little thinking goes a long way as well.

El Tejon
March 3, 2003, 05:15 PM
ahenry, thanks much. Yikes, this statute could bite us. Talk about a way to void CHL in Tejas entirely!:uhoh:

Time to time the cyberbooks. Anyone want me to report back?

CWL
March 3, 2003, 07:41 PM
1) "Club" means an instrument that is specially designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument, and includes but is not limited to the following:

Give some thought to the "...includes but is not limited to..." part of the definition of what are clubs. Then give more thought on the "...an instrument that is specially designed, made, or adapted for the purpose of inflicting serious bodily injury or death by striking a person with the instrument..." Since koppos are wooden or steel dowels that someone has spent the time to drill and secure a cord onto in order to make it a more effective striking weapon and yet allow retention. Doesn't this sound like the legal definition of "club"?

If you are carrying something designed as a weapon (and a koppo stick will fall into this category). The DA has leeway to decide whether or not to try you for carrying (concealed) and using a weapon.

brownie0486
March 4, 2003, 11:38 AM
CWL:
I would agree that the koppo stick is illegal in Texss as it was designed as a defensive tool.

I just got off the phone with the atty. generals office in Texas. The main number is 512-463-2100.

Under title 10, chapter 46 "OFFENSES AGAINST PUBLIC HEALTH, SAFETY, AND MORALS" specifically 46.01 they said they will not interpret laws of the state. They suggested I go to oag.state.tx.us or fll.state.tx.us and check there for interpretations on their websites which I have just completed.

Putting the 46.01 into the search engine produced no findings.
Typing in title 10 and chapter 46 produced no case law on their site.

The fll.state.tx.us does not resolve to a website as directed.

Apparently none have been charged under this statute where a ruling was brought forward relative a "stick" falling under these laws. No case history to go by so I called the Dept. of Public Safety at 512-424-2000.

I spoke with a person there who was the depts. atty "in house".
His name is David Boatright. He gave me his private number but I will not list it here.

He has this to say about the subject: He teaches at the criminal justice academy for officers in Texas. He is an atty: working for the state of Texas.

He directed me to Title 1; chapter 1; section 1.07; subsection A; subdivision 17 which covers dangerous weapons restrictions in Texas.

He stated that possessing pipes, axe handles, wrist thongs, sticks, dowels in and of themselves are not covered under the statute and are not illegal to have in your possession in Texas.

He further stated that these items could be defined as a club if used to hit someone and then it would become a dangerous weapon through the persons actions who in fact used same to strike another.

He further stated if a stick were used to defend onesself and the defense was justified that there would not a charge for using the stick.

He further states that the title 10 which was presented here on this thread deals with definitions of certain weapons which are illegal to possess. That to meet the criteria of the statute and to be charged under it the stick, pipe, axe handle, etc would have to have been altered in some way thereby making a "club" under that statute.

So it seems in this instance I am correct in the previous postings and that athe mere possesing of a stick, let alone an axe handle, pipe etc is not chargeable in and of itself. It's what you do with it that may be chargeable and the implement would be called a "club" under the law if you hit someone with it illegally.

This should put it to rest.

Brownie

seeker_two
March 4, 2003, 12:29 PM
Another pitfall may be that a DA classifies a Koppo under "Knuckles" as in a fistload.

I'll just pass on this trouble, thank you...:scrutiny:

brownie0486
March 4, 2003, 12:44 PM
The Koppo stick only needs to be brought back to a yawara stick configuration to be legal in that state. We now know a dowel or stick in and of itself is NOT illegal in Texas.

Yawaras look like the koppo but no wrist wrap attached.

I have a keychain yawara stick I use daily. It's a keychain but you have it with you almost always while out of the house [ if you drive ].

Brownie

JShirley
March 4, 2003, 02:42 PM
Carry a miniMag light or similarly sized sturdy mini flashlight.

And have a great day. :)

John

brownie0486
March 4, 2003, 02:57 PM
Minimags make great yawara sticks.

Good advice of a tool which can be used for something other than it's primary intended purpose.

Have one in the left from pocket right now actually. Never go without a light of some kind after having been caught with the pants down and needing one badly.

Brownie

ahenry
March 4, 2003, 03:57 PM
So it seems in this instance I am correct in the previous postings and that athe mere possesing of a stick, let alone an axe handle, pipe etc is not chargeable in and of itself. It's what you do with it that may be chargeable and the implement would be called a "club" under the law if you hit someone with it illegally. Thats not what you said “in the previous postings”. You said a club is something that is “fatter at one end”. The shape of the item has nothing to do with anything, which is as I said and then as the AG office further explained for you.

CWL
March 4, 2003, 09:09 PM
It all depends on the intent of the person carrying.

Here in CA, a mini maglight is a flashlight unless you use it to bash someone in a bar brawl, then it can be defined as a 'club' weapon if the DA wants to press charges. If you were jumped while walking to your car and defended yourself with a flashlight, I don't believe there would be repercussions (unless you beat someone with it after he is down, etc).

So if someone with a record of assault & battery is caught carrying a koppo or a keychain kubotan, no one will believe that it is for good purposes, while if some housewife has the same on her keychain -any cop would probably let it slide.

User's discretion.

El Tejon
March 4, 2003, 09:24 PM
CWL, yes, discretion is the problem. A Tejas DA could prosecute the CHL holder for possession of a "club" if he is merely carrying his pistol.

A big backdoor for the Brady Bunch to end the CHL reform law in Tejas.:(

brownie0486
March 5, 2003, 07:53 AM
What I said was Blacks Law dictionary describes it as such, and only then as a general guideline, as well that a stick could not be considered a club in and of itself as the statute was written and presented.

Billyclubs are fatter on one end and thats the distinction which makes them a club instead of a stick.

All who interpretted the law to read a "stick" was illegal to possess were incorrect.

Brownie

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