Knife clip exposed: legality?


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CDR_Glock
February 20, 2011, 12:27 PM
Knife in pocket with clip exposed. I see this all the time. What are the rules on this?

http://184.72.239.143/mu/a6890971-395d-e45b.jpg

What knives are legally eligble? This pic happens to be an OTF AUTO.

I am in Florida.

How is this handled in SC? VA? MD? NC? GA?

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bikerdoc
February 20, 2011, 12:37 PM
In Va auto is a no-no, clips dont get a second look.

kingpin008
February 20, 2011, 12:57 PM
Same in MD. Unless you're directly interacting with a cop, having a knife clip visible isn't an issue - and it'd likely not be an issue even to the cop. Autos are a no-no, however.

GRIZ22
February 20, 2011, 12:59 PM
What are the rules on this?

I don't know of anywhere you can't have an exposed clip. However, there are so many state laws and a plethora of local ordinances and somewhere its probably not permitted.

nalioth
February 20, 2011, 12:59 PM
Exposed pocket knife clips are as legal as exposed belly buttons and unrestrained children in the grocery store in the free states.

Can't speak to the tryin-to-be-commie states, though.

OcelotZ3
February 20, 2011, 04:54 PM
In some states, the only way to legally carry an auto knife is if it is visible. The visible clip covers that case.

dcdub
February 20, 2011, 05:08 PM
I am in NC and often SC and have never had an issue with this with law enforcement. I go to many concerts and have been stopped going into one in Asheville (freakshow) once. I could have had my kel tec in my waistband and they never would have known, and my Leatherman wasn't in issue, but they saw the clip and asked me to hide it in the bushes. As far as autos go here, I'm pretty sure they're illegal unless you're LEO or EMT/Paramedic.

HBrebel
February 20, 2011, 05:24 PM
my knife has a detachable clip is that legal? J/K had to say it haha

Daemon688
February 20, 2011, 08:00 PM
exposed clip in NYC is a big no no.

xcgates
February 20, 2011, 08:26 PM
In other words, if you haven't figured it out by now, knife laws are even more arbitrary and fragmented than firearm laws, at least as far as I've figured.

I'm not entirely sure about why, but I suspect it was because knives aren't as sexy at high levels of government as evil guns.

Even so, I carry one standard folder (Gerber Paraframe), and one assisted opener (another Gerber, but looking to replace it.). I don't worry too much about where I go, and if I look like I'm going to be somewhere with security, I either ditch them somewhere recoverable, or (like I did at one amusement park) stashed the knives in the same pocket as my flashlight. Metal detector went crazy, I mention a metal flashlight, and get passed through.

Granted I never spent much time in cities until movie to San Antonio, so I never really worried about what I was carrying. (Try finding someone in rural America that doesn't have at least a knife.)

::EDIT:: I am thinking about getting a dark Kershaw Leek, as I had one I loved, and mostly wear dark colored clothes, so the clip would blend in better. That and I can get that sheath for it cheaply and easily.

dayid
February 20, 2011, 09:41 PM
Since you are in the state of Florida, I'll post what Florida cares about:

(13) "Weapon" means any dirk, metallic knuckles, slungshot, billie, tear gas gun, chemical weapon or device, or other deadly weapon except a firearm or a common pocketknife.

As there are no other laws that note anything illegal about carrying a "common pocketknife", it is legal. There's nothing in the lawbooks about it being visible or concealed. There is no definition of "common pocketknife" in Florida state statutes; however,

In 1997, the Florida Supreme Court interpreted the meaning of the "common pocketknife" exception for the first time. In L. B. v. State, 700 So. 2d 370, 373 (per curiam), the court determined that a pocketknife with a blade of 3-3/4 inches "plainly falls within the statutory exception to the definition of 'weapon' found in section 790.001(13)."
In 1951, the Attorney General of Florida opined that a pocketknife with a blade of four inches in length or less was a 'common pocketknife.' The knife appellant carried, which had a 3-3/4-inch blade, clearly fell within this range

So, here you'll have to hope on people recognizing what a "common pocketknife" is. The idea here is to stop idiots from carrying about swords, huge fixed-blade knives, etc.

Frank Ettin
February 21, 2011, 01:05 AM
In California, an auto would be a serious problem. But a concealed folder, even with the clip showing, is just fine under state law.

leadcounsel
February 21, 2011, 08:45 AM
Seems it would be a good argument that it wasn't concealed, otherwise the officer couldn't see it!

BigRugerLover
February 22, 2011, 03:38 PM
I'm told that in New York City it is an invitation to getting frisked, and if the COP can open your knife with one hand then you have an arrest and weapons charge to deal with.

+BRL

mp510
February 23, 2011, 11:07 AM
I'm told that in New York City it is an invitation to getting frisked, and if the COP can open your knife with one hand then you have an arrest and weapons charge to deal with.

The NYC Administrative Code prohibits carrying visible knives unless you are actually using the knife, or are carrying it for specified recreational or occupational endeavors. This has been on the books since Koch but has been enforced with greater vigor recently. When you are stopped, and the cops check the knife, they can (and likely will) charge you with CPW if the knife can be flicked open (either by holding the handle or blade, per case law) since that qualified it under the statutory definition of a gravity knife.

Black Toe Knives
February 23, 2011, 11:14 AM
exposed clip in NYC is a big no no.
NYC, Second the big NO NO

Flintknapper
February 23, 2011, 11:29 AM
xcgates wrote:

In other words, if you haven't figured it out by now, knife laws are even more arbitrary and fragmented than firearm laws, at least as far as I've figured.
You are absolutely right. I wish all states had preemptive knife laws.

Even so, I carry one standard folder (Gerber Paraframe), and one assisted opener (another Gerber, but looking to replace it.). I don't worry too much about where I go, and if I look like I'm going to be somewhere with security, I either ditch them somewhere recoverable, or (like I did at one amusement park) stashed the knives in the same pocket as my flashlight. Metal detector went crazy, I mention a metal flashlight, and get passed through.

Granted I never spent much time in cities until movie to San Antonio, so I never really worried about what I was carrying. (Try finding someone in rural America that doesn't have at least a knife.)

::EDIT:: I am thinking about getting a dark Kershaw Leek, as I had one I loved, and mostly wear dark colored clothes, so the clip would blend in better. That and I can get that sheath for it cheaply and easily.

I don't know if you are aware, but San Antonio has a city ordinance prohibiting all knives that "lock" open. :mad:

Owen Sparks
February 23, 2011, 11:55 AM
Flintknapper said:

You are absolutely right. I wish all states had preemptive knife laws.

What does that mean?

earlthegoat2
February 23, 2011, 12:01 PM
As long as autos are legal and the size is legal I see no problem.

zhyla
February 23, 2011, 01:21 PM
No one person knows all the knife laws for all localities. It's simply not possible in the U.S. because cities all have their own knife laws. But I'm not aware of any place that has a rule about unconcealed knives and the knife clip makes it unconcealed.

mp510
February 23, 2011, 11:19 PM
No one person knows all the knife laws for all localities. It's simply not possible in the U.S. because cities all have their own knife laws. But I'm not aware of any place that has a rule about unconcealed knives and the knife clip makes it unconcealed.
IN NYC, a visible clip is enough to get you cited for the Admin code violation.

shotgunjoel
February 23, 2011, 11:35 PM
When you are stopped, and the cops check the knife, they can (and likely will) charge you with CPW if the knife can be flicked open (either by holding the handle or blade, per case law) since that qualified it under the statutory definition of a gravity knife.
I don't think that there are any folding knives in the world that couldn't be opened with one hand somehow. Even a Buck style with the heel lock can be opened one handed.

Ironclad
February 24, 2011, 11:26 PM
Im so glad I live in Missouri. I didn't even realize there were laws about carryin knives til I read this thread. The only trouble I ever had with a knife was when I went through the metal detector at the courthouse with one when I was 12 or 13. The deputy just offered to hang on to it til I came back out to save me a trip back to mom's car.

thorn726
February 26, 2011, 11:21 AM
i could definitely see a cop who was looking to be a pain call that "concealed" in the city, but flicked open is supposed to be OK (here) and a legal folder is legal to conceal, so no problem as long as it is under 3 inches or whatever your locality says (love Berkeley jerk rules, it's 2.5 inches here, then the UC adds extra troubles on campus)
TROUBLE is cop deciding he wants to know how long it is since he cant see it, but sees enough of it.

Guillermo
February 26, 2011, 11:51 AM
knife laws are stupid but since we have to live with them I guess they must be addressed. (sigh)

logically speaking I don't see how a clip makes the knife "exposed". Lots of things have clips.

Just because logic dictates something does not mean that there is not an issue with a cop. They often do not know the law. Post 11 pretty much answers your question in Florida.

And in Florida doesn't have a concealed handgun law...it is a concealed WEAPON law. Just make sure it is concealed and you can carry a cudgel.

kansersurvivor
February 26, 2011, 12:09 PM
I am in NC and often SC and have never had an issue with this with law enforcement. I go to many concerts and have been stopped going into one in Asheville (freakshow) once. I could have had my kel tec in my waistband and they never would have known, and my Leatherman wasn't in issue, but they saw the clip and asked me to hide it in the bushes. As far as autos go here, I'm pretty sure they're illegal unless you're LEO or EMT/Paramedic.
Nothing illegal about carrying a knife in this manner in Asheville, going to a private show though...yup...not a good idea.

I 2nd Guillermo's statement about the concealed "WEAPON" aspect, meaning it pertains to more than just handguns.

Guillermo
February 26, 2011, 12:11 PM
I 2nd Guillermo's statement about the concealed "WEAPON" aspect, meaning it pertains to more than just handguns

The OP didn't mention that he had a permit but if he does...

Guillermo
February 26, 2011, 12:32 PM
CDR,

I see the problem. That is a high capacity clip

jon_in_wv
February 26, 2011, 12:42 PM
The idiotic laws in NY are the only reason I haven't been there yet. There are so many other places I can legally go about my business without worrying about doing prison time for it.

MICHAEL T
February 26, 2011, 12:58 PM
I was a over road trucker for nearly 20 years. A 5" blade large voyager was always clipped to my pocket I traveled all 48 states and Canada NYC .included .I needed it in Camden NJ once. I was never bother 1st time by any cop . Today I carry the 6"blade XL voyager still clipped to my pants . Your looks and attitude have a lot to do with how a cop looks at you.
I was in NYC 1 week after 911 with my family on vacation and to look at the destruction . I stood and talked to Police and fireman in Manhattan with the knife clipped on in pocket .
I never had a problem in all the years I traveled in and out of NYC. With a policeman or fireman . They always were polite& helpful in my dealings with them. I wish I could say the same about the people that live their. They were anything but polite or helpful . One reason I have never went back since I stopped driving The attitude of the New York City citizen. leaves much to be desired.

In Ky I can carry any type knife I want with my Permit auto, butterfly , Full size bowie concealed doesn't matter . I love living in a free state .

johnnylaw53
February 27, 2011, 09:22 AM
"Exposed pocket knife clips are as legal as exposed belly buttons and unrestrained children in the grocery store in the free states."

Nalioth, While i like your saying I notice you are from Houston. I really never gave my clip any mind but it this question and your comment got me thinking back in the early 1970's my family and I was driving thru Houston back to Florida where I was station we stop to eat and I was told by two Houston police officer that I could go to jail for the buck knife I had on my belt. It was a buck ranger folder in a pouch. Have they change that law? if not I feel that it would be the same as a knife clip showing.

be safe

nalioth
February 27, 2011, 09:50 AM
Nalioth, While i like your saying I notice you are from Houston. I really never gave my clip any mind but it this question and your comment got me thinking back in the early 1970's my family and I was driving thru Houston back to Florida where I was station we stop to eat and I was told by two Houston police officer that I could go to jail for the buck knife I had on my belt. It was a buck ranger folder in a pouch. Have they change that law? if not I feel that it would be the same as a knife clip showing.They most likely were thinking of of the blade length. IIRC, the Buck 110 appears pretty big in its sheath.

So long as your knife has a blade length under the legal limit (5"), and isn't a Bowie or other proscribed-by-type knife, you're g2g here.

xcgates
February 27, 2011, 11:30 PM
Flintknapper: Yikes, that includes all but 2 old pocket knives I have. (One from my scout years, one from my dad's scout years)

I'll have to look at it, but I can tell you a good percentage of the people I work with carry some sort of knife that locks open. I know this is off-topic per the OP, but that just goes to show the common sense the Gov has. I am about to retire my primary knife because the lock is loose, after 6+ years of hard use. I don't want to be using a knife that could pop closed while I am using it.

MD_Willington
March 1, 2011, 08:12 PM
Not sure what the rules are here in WA state but a lot of people have them in pocket with clip out.

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