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Criminal Attorneys Explain Knife Laws


Knife ordinances vary throughout the state

The law regarding carrying and using knives is fairly short in Ohio, but it has an effect on cases where knives are displayed or used. Almost every town has its own ordinances regarding possession, carrying and using knives, so defending a case involving any kind of blade requires in-depth knowledge of the various laws throughout the state. The criminal lawyers at Yavitch & Palmer Co., L.P.A. know the law and can build a strong defense against your charges.

Carrying versus concealing a knife on your person in Ohio

Officially, there is no law against owning or carrying a knife on your person. There are, however, very specific laws regarding concealing a weapon on your person — only a handgun may be legally concealed. Therefore, any concealed knife is an unlawfully concealed weapon.

Carrying an unlawfully concealed weapon is a first-degree misdemeanor, although certain factors can elevate it to a fourth-degree felony. In addition, several kinds of knives are considered particularly dangerous or are thought to be manufactured for the purpose of illicit use. These knives, which include the following, are prohibited from being sold in Ohio:

  • Switchblade knives: A knife with a folding or sliding blade concealed in its handle
  • Springblade knives: A switchblade knife that opens by pushing a button with a spring-operated release
  • Gravity knives: A switchblade designed to be opened with one hand with the force of motion or gravity
  • Ballistic knives: A knife with a detachable blade that is propelled by a spring-operated mechanism

How knives affect other charges in Ohio

The presence of a knife is grounds for increased charges in many criminal cases. If you’re not careful, what would have been a simple misdemeanor charge becomes a felony case. Charges that increase in severity because a knife is involved include the following:

  • Assault: An accusation of simple assault, normally a first-degree misdemeanor, becomes a second-degree felony when a deadly weapon is involved even if no harm is done.
  • Robbery: The crime of robbery without a weapon is considered third-degree felony punishable by up to five years in jail.Possessing a knife or threatening another person with it during the incident increases the charges to a second-degree felony, which increases your possible jail time.

Don’t face knife-related accusations alone

The attorneys at Yavitch & Palmer Co., L.P.A. have a deep understanding of criminal defense law. Call our office in downtown Columbus at 614.224.6142 or fill out our online form to set up an appointment.

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