Carrying of a knive in vehicle/on person in TX


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Bullnettles
July 18, 2009, 02:51 PM
Hey guys and gals,

I live in Houston, but am from the sticks (where stuff got over-looked because of utility). I have a few knives that I would like to carry in my car, but one I believe is too long (Cold Steel) and one I know is too long (Ka-Bar). Back in the day I used it for everything from a machete to a hammer. I see very little use for knives like that on my commute to work, but you never know. I'm someone who would rather be prepared for the worst, so I foresee needs I can't see :rolleyes:. I have my CHL, but I'm fairly sure that doesn't mean anything for illegal length knives, but I'm not sure. Any thoughts? Thank you for your help.

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nalioth
July 18, 2009, 03:07 PM
The carriage of hand tools will raise no eyebrows.

Something to think about.

almostfree
July 18, 2009, 03:19 PM
An illegal knife:
(6) "Illegal knife" means a:
(A) knife with a blade over five and one-half inches;
(B) hand instrument designed to cut or stab another by being thrown;
(C) dagger, including but not limited to a dirk, stiletto, and poniard;
(D) bowie knife;
(E) sword; or
(F) spear.


It is my understanding that an "illegal" knife may now be carried in a vehicle under the Motorist Protection Act.

Sec. 46.02. UNLAWFUL CARRYING WEAPONS. (a) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun, illegal knife, or club if the person is not:

(1) on the person's own premises or premises under the person's control; or
(2) inside of or directly en route to a motor vehicle that is owned by the person or under the person's control.
(a-1) A person commits an offense if the person intentionally, knowingly, or recklessly carries on or about his or her person a handgun in a motor vehicle that is owned by the person or under the person's control at any time in which:
(1) the handgun is in plain view; or
(2) the person is:
(A) engaged in criminal activity, other than a Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a law or ordinance regulating traffic;
(B) prohibited by law from possessing a firearm; or
(C) a member of a criminal street gang, as defined by Section 71.01.


What I am not clear on is the definition of a dagger or bowie knife. Some think this means a dagger in the traditional sense like a sykes-fairbairn knife. Others think this means any knife that is sharpened at all on both sides. A lot of hunting knives have a portion of the top edge sharpened. I am not sure if these are legal or illegal for carry on the person outside of a vehicle.

For years I carried a standard Ka-Bar while surveying. I used it for everything from chopping large tree limbs to digging up property corners. On my lunch break one time, I was scolded by a Houston police officer for carrying an illegal knife. I tried to tell him that I was presently using it for work, but he told me he could arrest me for it if he was so inclined. I switched to a shorter Ka-Bar, but it didn't work as well, and I ended up not carrying it anymore.

No one ever harassed us for carrying 22" machetes though.

TexasRifleman
July 18, 2009, 06:59 PM
It is my understanding that an "illegal" knife may now be carried in a vehicle under the Motorist Protection Act.

That's my reading of it too but I have to say that you're in gray area with that one.

The gun issue has been pretty much settled as far as carrying concealed in the car goes, even in Houston.

But the knife thing would worry me. As almostfree says, the definition of what knives are legal and illegal is pretty darned fuzzy so you're at the mercy of lots of personal interpretation being mixed in there.

And the OP is right, Texas CHL's only cover handguns. Some states, like Florida, have "weapon" permit but Texas is handguns only.

nalioth
July 18, 2009, 10:03 PM
But the knife thing would worry me. As almostfree says, the definition of what knives are legal and illegal is pretty darned fuzzy so you're at the mercy of lots of personal interpretation being mixed in there. I'd say there are no worries, with the new MPA. You can have whatever knife you want in your vehicle, provided you're not caught under one of the 4 "no-nos".

TexasRifleman
July 18, 2009, 10:13 PM
I'd say there are no worries, with the new MPA. You can have whatever knife you want in your vehicle, provided you're not caught under one of the 4 "no-nos".

I would tend to agree but there's a catch with knives. There is no state preemption with knife laws so you might get caught in some local ordinance ie San Antonio's no locking blade thing.

I'm not sure if MPA would cover that or not.

Bullnettles
December 4, 2009, 12:45 AM
This is a long time coming, but thank you for your replies. My blade is 5in. and will remain out of sight and close at hand. Once again, thank you!

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