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PostPosted: Fri Sep 13, 2002 6:30 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2000 6:01 am
Posts: 493
Location: Framingham, MA USA
FAQ's concerning the law in Massachusetts can be answered by the reading of this statute.

A copy of this should be a must for all interested in weapons, including many martial arts weapons.

I have posted sections in the past and the following is the entire section.

LAWS OF MASSACHUSETTS
PART IV.
CRIMES, PUNISHMENTS AND PROCEEDINGS IN CRIMINAL CASES.

TITLE I.
CRIMES AND PUNISHMENTS.

CHAPTER 269. CRIMES AGAINST PUBLIC PEACE.
Chapter 269: Section 10. Carrying dangerous weapons; possession of machine gun or sawed-off shotguns; possession of large capacity weapon or large capacity feeding device; punishment.
Section 10. (a) Whoever, except as provided or exempted by statute, knowingly has in his possession; or knowingly has under his control in a vehicle; a firearm, loaded or unloaded, as defined in section one hundred and twenty-one of chapter one hundred and forty without either:
(1) being present in or on his residence or place of business; or
(2) having in effect a license to carry firearms issued under section one hundred and thirty-one of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(3) having in effect a license to carry firearms issued under section one hundred and thirty-one F of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(4) having complied with the provisions of sections one hundred and twenty-nine C and one hundred and thirty-one G of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(5) having complied as to possession of an air rifle or BB gun with the requirements imposed by section twelve B; and whoever knowingly has in his possession; or knowingly has under control in a vehicle; a rifle or shotgun, loaded or unloaded, without either:
(1) being present in or on his residence or place of business; or
(2) having in effect a license to carry firearms issued under section one hundred and thirty-one of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(3) having in effect a license to carry firearms issued under section one hundred and thirty-one F of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(4) having in effect a firearms identification card issued under section one hundred and twenty-nine B of chapter one hundred and forty; or
(5) having complied with the requirements imposed by section one hundred and twenty-nine C of chapter one hundred and forty upon ownership or possession of rifles and shotguns; or
(6) having complied as to possession of an air rifle or BB gun with the requirements imposed by section twelve B; shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not less than two and one-half years nor more than five years, or for not less than one year nor more than two and one-half years in a jail or house of correction. The sentence imposed on such person shall not be reduced to less than one year, nor suspended, nor shall any person convicted under this subsection be eligible for probation, parole, work release, or furlough or receive any deduction from his sentence for good conduct until he shall have served one year of such sentence; provided, however, that the commissioner of correction may on the recommendation of the warden, superintendent, or other person in charge of a correctional institution, grant to an offender committed under this subsection a temporary release in the custody of an officer of such institution for the following purposes only: to attend the funeral of a relative; to visit a critically ill relative; or to obtain emergency medical or psychiatric service unavailable at said institution. Prosecutions commenced under this subsection shall neither be continued without a finding nor placed on file.
No person having in effect a license to carry firearms for any purpose, issued under section one hundred and thirty-one or section one hundred and thirty-one F of chapter one hundred and forty shall be deemed to be in violation of this section.
The provisions of section eighty-seven of chapter two hundred and seventy-six shall not apply to any person seventeen years of age or older, charged with a violation of this subsection, or to any child between ages fourteen and seventeen so charged, if the court is of the opinion that the interests of the public require that he should be tried as an adult for such offense instead of being dealt with as a child.
The provisions of this subsection shall not affect the licensing requirements of section one hundred and twenty-nine C of chapter one hundred and forty which require every person not otherwise duly licensed or exempted to have been issued a firearms identification card in order to possess a firearm, rifle or shotgun in his residence or place of business.
(b) Whoever, except as provided by law, carries on his person, or carries on his person or under his control in a vehicle, any stiletto, dagger or a device or case which enables a knife with a locking blade to be drawn at a locked position, any ballistic knife, or any knife with a detachable blade capable of being propelled by any mechanism, dirk knife, any knife having a double-edged blade, or a switch knife, or any knife having an automatic spring release device by which the blade is released from the handle, having a blade of over one and one-half inches, or a slung shot, blowgun, blackjack, metallic knuckles or knuckles of any substance which could be put to the same use with the same or similar effect as metallic knuckles, nunchaku, zoobow, also known as klackers or kung fu sticks, or any similar weapon consisting of two sticks of wood, plastic or metal connected at one end by a length of rope, chain, wire or leather, a shuriken or any similar pointed starlike object intended to injure a person when thrown, or any armband, made with leather which has metallic spikes, points or studs or any similar device made from any other substance or a cestus or similar material weighted with metal or other substance and worn on the hand, or a manrikigusari or similar length of chain having weighted ends; or whoever, when arrested upon a warrant for an alleged crime, or when arrested while committing a breach or disturbance of the public peace, is armed with or has on his person, or has on his person or under his control in a vehicle, a billy or other dangerous weapon other than those herein mentioned and those mentioned in paragraph (a), shall be punished by imprisonment for not less than two and one-half years nor more than five years in the state prison, or for not less than six months nor more than two and one-half years in a jail or house of correction, except that, if the court finds that the defendant has not been previously convicted of a felony, he may be punished by a fine of not more than fifty dollars or by imprisonment for not more than two and one-half years in a jail or house of correction.
(c) Whoever, except as provided by law, possesses a machine gun, as defined in section one hundred and twenty-one of chapter one hundred and forty, without permission under section one hundred and thirty-one of said chapter one hundred and forty; or whoever owns, possesses or carries on his person, or carries on his person or under his control in a vehicle, a sawed-off shotgun, as defined in said section one hundred and twenty-one of said chapter one hundred and forty, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for life, or for any term of years provided that any sentence imposed under the provisions of this paragraph shall be subject to the minimum requirements of paragraph (a).
(d) Whoever, after having been convicted of any of the offenses set forth in paragraph (a), (b) or (c) commits a like offense or any other of the said offenses, shall be punished by imprisonment in the state prison for not less than five years nor more than seven years; for a third such offense, by imprisonment in the state prison for not less than seven years nor more than ten years; and for a fourth such offense, by imprisonment in the state prison for not less than ten years nor more than fifteen years. The sentence imposed upon a person, who after a conviction of an offense under paragraph (a), (b) or (c) commits the same or a like offense, shall not be suspended, nor shall any person so sentenced be eligible for probation or receive any deduction from his sentence for good conduct.
(e) Upon conviction of a violation of this section, the firearm or other article shall, unless otherwise ordered by the court, be confiscated by the commonwealth. The firearm or article so confiscated shall, by the authority of the written order of the court be forwarded by common carrier to the colonel of the state police, who, upon receipt of the same, shall notify said court or justice thereof. Said colonel may sell or destroy the same, except that any firearm which may not be lawfully sold in the commonwealth shall be destroyed, and in the case of a sale, after paying the cost of forwarding the article, shall pay over the net proceeds to the commonwealth.
(f) The court shall, if the firearm or other article was lost by or stolen from the person lawfully in possession of it, order its return to such person.
(g) Whoever, within this commonwealth, produces for sale, delivers or causes to be delivered, orders for delivery, sells or offers for sale, or fails to keep records regarding, any rifle or shotgun without complying with the requirement of a serial number, as provided in section one hundred and twenty-nine B of chapter one hundred and forty, shall for the first offense be punished by confinement in a jail or house of correction for not more than two and one-half years, or by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars.
(h) Whoever owns, possesses or transfers possession of a firearm, rifle, shotgun or ammunition without complying with the requirements relating to firearm identification cards as provided in section 129C of chapter 140 shall be punished by imprisonment in a jail or house of correction for not more than two years or by a fine of not more than $500. A second violation of this paragraph shall be punished by imprisonment in a jail or house of correction for not more than two years or by a fine of not more than $1,000 or both. A person committing a violation of this subsection may be arrested without a warrant by any officer authorized to make arrests.
(i) Whoever knowingly fails to deliver or surrender a revoked or suspended license to carry or possess firearms or machine guns issued under the provisions of section one hundred and thirty-one or one hundred and thirty-one F of chapter one hundred and forty, or firearm identification card, or receipt for the fee for such card, or a firearm, rifle, shotgun or machine gun, as provided in section one hundred and twenty-nine D of chapter one hundred and forty, unless an appeal is pending, shall be punished by imprisonment in a jail or house of correction for not more than two and one-half years or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars.
(j) Whoever, not being a law enforcement officer, and notwithstanding any license obtained by him under the provisions of chapter one hundred and forty, carries on his person a firearm as hereinafter defined, loaded or unloaded or other dangerous weapon in any building or on the grounds of any elementary or secondary school, college or university without the written authorization of the board or officer in charge of such elementary or secondary school, college or university shall be punished by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars or by imprisonment for not more than one year, or both. For the purpose of this paragraph, ""firearm'' shall mean any pistol, revolver, rifle or smoothbore arm from which a shot, bullet or pellet can be discharged by whatever means.
Any officer in charge of an elementary or secondary school, college or university or any faculty member or administrative officer of an elementary or secondary school, college or university failing to report violations of this paragraph shall be guilty of a misdemeanor and punished by a fine of not more than five hundred dollars.
[ There is no paragraph (k).]
(%93) The provisions of this section shall be fully applicable to any person proceeded against under section seventy-five of chapter one hundred and nineteen and convicted under section eighty-three of chapter one hundred and nineteen, provided, however, that nothing contained in this section shall impair, impede, or affect the power granted any court by chapter one hundred and nineteen to adjudicate a person a delinquent child, including the power so granted under section eighty-three of said chapter one hundred and nineteen.
(m) Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph (a) or (h), any person not exempted by statute who knowingly has in his possession, or knowingly has under his control in a vehicle, a large capacity weapon or large capacity feeding device therefor who does not possess a valid Class A or Class B license to carry firearms issued under section 131 or 131F of chapter 140, except as permitted or otherwise provided under this section or chapter 140, shall be punished by imprisonment in a state prison for not less than two and one-half years nor more than ten years. The possession of a valid firearm identification card issued under section 129B shall not be a defense for a violation of this subsection; provided, however, that any such person charged with violating this paragraph and holding a valid firearm identification card shall not be subject to any mandatory minimum sentence imposed by this paragraph. The sentence imposed upon such person shall not be reduced to less than one year, nor suspended, nor shall any person convicted under this subsection be eligible for probation, parole, furlough, work release or receive any deduction from his sentence for good conduct until he shall have served such minimum term of such sentence; provided, however, that the commissioner of correction may, on the recommendation of the warden, superintendent or other person in charge of a correctional institution or the administrator of a county correctional institution, grant to such offender a temporary release in the custody of an officer of such institution for the following purposes only: (i) to attend the funeral of a spouse or next of kin; (ii) to visit a critically ill close relative or spouse; or (iii) to obtain emergency medical services unavailable at such institution. Prosecutions commenced under this subsection shall neither be continued without a finding nor placed on file. The provisions of section 87 of chapter 276 relative to the power of the court to place certain offenders on probation shall not apply to any person 17 years of age or over charged with a violation of this section.
The provisions of this paragraph shall not apply to the possession of a large capacity weapon or large capacity feeding device by (i) any officer, agent or employee of the commonwealth or any other state or the United States, including any federal, state or local law enforcement personnel; (ii) any member of the military or other service of any state or the United States; (iii) any duly authorized law enforcement officer, agent or employee of any municipality of the commonwealth; (iv) any federal, state or local historical society, museum or institutional collection open to the public; provided, however, that any such person described in clauses (i) to (iii), inclusive, is authorized by a competent authority to acquire, possess or carry a large capacity semiautomatic weapon and is acting within the scope of his duties; or (v) any gunsmith duly licensed under the applicable federal law.


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 18, 2002 7:52 pm 
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Joined: Sat Dec 12, 1998 6:01 am
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Location: Weymouth, MA US of A
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
Quote:
Whoever, except as provided by law, carries on his person, or carries on his person or under his control in a vehicle, any stiletto, dagger or a device or case which enables a knife with a locking blade to be drawn at a locked position,


So is my Emerson Commander out, becaus it has a little hook on the blade that catches my pants pocket, so it opens automatically?

What about the Spyderco models?

Gene

[This message has been edited by Gene DeMambro (edited September 18, 2002).]


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PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2002 2:59 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2000 6:01 am
Posts: 493
Location: Framingham, MA USA
Hello, Gene
I am not familiar with any knife which has a hook enabling the knife to be drawn in a locked position.

I can't envision this happening; however if the knife requires your physical action to open I doubt that this would be what is meant.

When I was a kid you could buy a switch blade knife (usually and el cheapo)with a button which released the spring loaded blade.

This was the first knife banned for sale in Massachusetts if my memory serves me correctly.

The statute targets spring loaded devices which have automatic or power assisted opening potential.

I have several lock folders which release when you manually pull up on a screwed in knurled nob. This may take one or two hands but has no automatic release.

Yours sounds like you provide the mechanical knife erection (ha ha) by physically pushing a portion of the knife so that it opens. I doubt that it opens while still in your pocket.

You hit the nail on the head as to why I posted the statute.

I wanted to provide a warning after I read in one of the forums about a knife with a torsion or torsion bar release.

If this device flips the blade open, I am afraid this is banned.

A torsion bar or device reminds me of the fact that many vehicles have torsion bar suspension which is tantamount to a spring.

I also must warn of Gunting models which (pardon my ignorance) some how releases the blade when slapped into the palm of the hand.

In other words what I want to say and believe is that no matter what the method or device, if the blade has some method of release by the application of a kinetic force mechanism, it would probably be banned under Massachusetts law.

Some people can draw a knife by grasping the blade and snapping the the handle so the blade opens at the instant of withdrawal.

This does not per se make the knife a statutory dangerous weapon.

Maybe some readers, with better knowledge than I possess, might post more information on these knives.

Alan K


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PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2002 2:31 pm 
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Joined: Mon Nov 20, 2000 6:01 am
Posts: 493
Location: Framingham, MA USA
Gene,

After my last post I forgot to include the warning set forth in the Commonwealth v. Stephen Miller case ( the dirk knife case ).

The court cautioned, that even though they had ruled that the particular folding pocket knife was not a "dirk knife" (if it had been it would have been deemed a classified dangerous weapon and a felony), the court did say if the knife were in the open position while in his pocket, that action would constitute intent of use as a deadly weapon.

The cases hold that even a large bread knife carried in a sack or large pocketbook and not on the person, IMHO no implied intent.

I have beaten this subject to death on other posts but felt it important to once again remind all, that even if article employed or confiscated, is not on the statutory list of dangerous weapons per se, where, how and under what circumstances, can make the same article or device a dangerous weapon.

So, I can carry an old standby jacknife such as a Buck (with no lock back) classic where old men and little boys sit on tree stumps and whittle branches, should I carry this knife in my pocket in the open position, and am arrested for illegal fishing in Lake Wobegon, this could create my intent to use this as a deadly weapon; at least in Massachusetts.

And there is also the prostitute arrested for whatever, was carrying a steak knife on her person.

When asked by the LEO, why she was carrying the knife, she stated that it was for self-defense, and was later convicted of carrying a dangerous weapon, since she contemplated it to be a weapon, even if for self-defense.

I am sure that all of you have heard of cases convicting people of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon, to wit:
a No. 2 pencil.

The statute itself is onerous and overbearing when it comes to the rights of martial artists who would love to train with or demonstrate classic Asian weapons but cannot even transport them to the dojo.

Here again, this could be amended, with employing lobbyists, to educate the legislature. This requires money and organization.


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PostPosted: Mon Sep 30, 2002 6:09 pm 
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Location: Chicago, IL USA
Counsellor,

The statute also seems to rule out the majority of skin/SCUBA diving knives as they are double edged, often with a serrated edge to facilitate cutting underwater.

Contacting PADI (Professional Association of Diving Instructors) might be useful in lobbying against this prohibition. There are a LOT of skin and SCUBA divers in your Commonwealth, and a lot more who visit there on a regular basis.

Maybe a joint lobbying effort might be in order?

Respectfully,

Lee Darrow, C.Ht.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 01, 2002 9:29 pm 
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Location: Framingham, MA USA
Hi Lee'

There is no doubt that the best mechanism for educating legislators is through the lobbyist.

People think of the lobbyist as some old political hack who tries to buy votes.
In fact, with the workload of the house and senate, the elected often have only a sketch of the law or regulation.

The lobbyist whether pro or con will try to portray the good or evil of the bill.

The problem is the same for the Scuba groups, or for martial artists. The gun people do have the NRA.

Lobbying is expensive unless spread amoung a large number of people and this requires organization.

Its a question of money.

Campaigns and letter writing are ok, but unless the numbers are large, do not approach what a good lobbyst can do.

I can imagine that even fishermen may use the knife which has even some part of the surface sharpened on both sides.

When we deal with weapons statutes we see more emotion that thought when it comes to passing these laws clearly without thought of industry involvement or the need of Scuba Divers to carry this knife, which is not only necessary but may save lives of divers who have become entangled.

Thanks for the post Lee.

Alan K

------------------
"The Goddess of Justice is Blind"


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