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Knife laws in Ohio?

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Old 08-17-2011, 02:14 PM   #1
Smitty82
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Default Knife laws in Ohio?

Does anyone have any creditable info on fixed blade knife carry in ohio, specifically in parks and on backpacking trails (i.e. does it have to be concealed, is there a max blade length, ect.)?
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:24 PM   #2
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Larger fixed blades must be visible, technically.

Autos, you can own, but you cannot carry & you cannot sell.
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:27 PM   #3
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More technicalities for you:

Quote:
"[A] knife is not presumed to be a deadly weapon, even if it is concealed." Columbus v. Dawson (1986), 28 Ohio App.3d 45, 46. This Court has previously stated that to convict a defendant "of carrying a deadly weapon, the state must prove either 1) that the knife was designed or specifically adapted for use as a weapon, or 2) that the defendant possessed, carried, or used the knife as a weapon."
Therefore, you could technically carry it in your backpack as a tool & be fine.


It's a tool, not a weapon. Common sense is advised, no hacking firewood near the playground, etc.
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Old 08-17-2011, 02:30 PM   #4
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You are legally allowed to carry a fixed blade knife in plain sight on your side.


Technically, you can carry it concealed. However, you cannot carry it concealed as a weapon. Figure out that gray area!
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Old 08-17-2011, 03:04 PM   #5
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Thats fine, i have a large fixed blade that i keep on my belt when backpacking. Just wasnt sure if it was ok to keep it in plain sight. Thanks for the info!
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Old 08-17-2011, 03:07 PM   #6
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We are fortunate in that we are a midwestern state. I'm sure it's different in say...CA or NY?


We should probably stop talking about how much we enjoy the freedom, they might take that one away too.
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Old 08-17-2011, 04:23 PM   #7
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Default knife

Well here they say a pocket knife has to be 3 inches or less. But the police have told me personally it don't matter. If you commit a crime or are picked up for something any knife is a possible deadly weapon. Also straight blade knives have no size limit either unless you get in trouble. But like open concealment of a gun its legal. But be prepared to be hassled if wearing it in public. Especially if it scares some one ot they complain.
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Old 08-17-2011, 06:43 PM   #8
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a guy at work , in the national guard,got stopped going home with his ka-bar gov't issued, and got charged with concealed weapon. don't know the whole story, but i think he was railroaded.
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Old 08-17-2011, 08:37 PM   #9
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interesting thread here. I've learned a lot.

My thinking has always been that it depended on the surroundings or context - if you were hunting, hiking, fishing, then you'd likely be given a pass, as opposed to being stupid enough to pull out an 8 inch bowie or K bar in a school lunchroom cafeteria...or approach a 7/11 clerk with the blade drawn while asking for a six pack of Coors...

I've fished in PA, Oregon, Colorado, Michigan, New York, Maine (as well as Ohio, obviously) and have had utility and/or hunting/fishing knives on my person, completely visible in a sheath on my belt - and have stood and chatted with Wildlife Law Enforcement Officers, and they've never given me any trouble about carrying them, or even mentioned it, for that matter.

Anything can be a weapon, really... a rock, a broken bottle, a fork... it all depends on how you are acting with the item in question, I would think.

As far as spring loaded blades, I was under the impression that these are all illegal to carry, sell, or buy, but not illegal to own...I have about half a dozen switchblades/stilettos of various sizes and configurations, some beautiful antiques and built to last, others the cheap stuff with plastic fake onyx handles, but I never carry them outside of the house.

I have my Rappala filet knife, and I have a Smith & Wesson Work Horse for utility use, and I carry those with me when fishing or camping.
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Old 08-17-2011, 09:37 PM   #10
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You are correct copperdon. You can own automatic knives, you just can't sell them, carry them... or transport them across state lines.

You are also correct on the outcome depending upon the circumstances.

Ultimately, it's the officer's discretion what to do, regardless of law. He may ask to see it because he's a knife enthusiast, he may taze you & run you over.

Never know! lol.
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Old 08-18-2011, 07:02 PM   #11
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I was going pig hunting earlier this year and was dressed in my hunting gear...which included having my knife sheathed and hanging on my belt. I walked into the local gas station that I use a lot to get gas and soda before heading out, and this customer standing out the counter stops dead in his tracks and just looks at me. After a few seconds, he ran past me out the door and took off.
The cashier said thanks to me.
The customer at the counter had been hassling the Indian clerk for looking like, what I guess he thought a terrorist would look like. Lol, when I walked in all dressed in camo with a full big bushy beard and a pretty big knife on my side, it was too much and the guy had to run off.
The guy who ran off called the police after he ran out, and they were there before I was even done paying for my purchases. The clerk and I told them what happened, I explained where I was heading, they asked to search my vehicle, I let them, one of them offered to buy my shotgun if I ever wanted to sell it.
Not once did they ever say anything about the knife or even asked to see it. Just made sure I had everything safely stowed in the car and what not.
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Last edited by chaunc; 08-18-2011 at 07:08 PM.
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