Colorado Knife Laws

colorado knife laws

Knife laws are different in every state and owning a knife isn’t as simple as you may think because you might get arrested for possession of a knife because it is a deadly weapon. However, there is no need to worry because you just have to know the legal and illegal knives and differences between both and reasons for the categorization of both. We have made everything simple for you by explaining everything in simple words, so you are clear about what to do and what not to do. Furthermore, the information about Colorado knife laws will also be provided to you in this article, so there are no confusions regarding anything.

Legal knives to own in Colorado

Let’s have a look at the legal knives list that you can own in Colorado.

  • Dirks, daggers, push knives and stilettos are legal.
  • Bowie knives and other large blades are legal.
  • Disguised knives like belt knives, pen knives, cane knives, and lipstick knives are legal.
  • Balisong/butterfly knives are in a legal gray area.

Illegal knives to own in Colorado

  • Ballistic knives are illegal.
  • Gravity knives and switchblades are illegal.

Concealed illegal knives

There are few other types which are illegal to carry concealed or hidden, concealed mean that they are purposely hidden from the public eye. Following are the types of knives which can’t be carried concealed.

  • All knives less than 3.5 inches are legal.
  • All fishing and hunting knives of any length are legal.
  • All knives over 3.5 inches are illegal.
Formal law for knives

Knives possession is regulated in the state of Colorado, and the formal law is articulated below.

18-12-102. Possessing a dangerous or illegal weapon – affirmative defense

(1) As used in this section, the term “dangerous weapon” means a firearm silencer, machine gun, short shotgun, short rifle, or ballistic knife.

(2) As used in this section, the term “illegal weapon” means a blackjack, gas gun, metallic knuckles, gravity knife, or switchblade knife.

(3) A person who knowingly possesses a dangerous weapon commits a class 5 felony. Each subsequent violation of this subsection (3) by the same person shall be a class 4 felony.

(4) A person who knowingly possesses an illegal weapon commits a class 1 misdemeanor.

(e) “Gravity knife” means any knife that has a blade released from the handle or sheath thereof by the force of gravity or the application of centrifugal force.

(j) “Switchblade knife” means any knife, the blade of which opens automatically by hand pressure applied to a button, spring, or another device in its handle.

Breakdown of the above law

Let’s break down these laws in simple English, so it is easy to understand for everyone who wants to own a good knife.

According to this law, it is a total crime in Colorado to possess a knife that is dangerous or termed as an illegal weapon. The ballistic knife which is banned in all the states is also unlawful in Colorado because it is termed as a deadly weapon and is an offense that is a felony and can be charged with 1+ years in jail. While other types of knives like gravity and switchblades are also termed as illegal weapons and the possession of these is a misdemeanor offense which means you can be charged with at least one year in jail for illegal possession of this knife.

Gravity knife has various ranges, and a balisong knife can also be considered a gravity knife, and it has even been classified as a gravity knife in almost every other state but not all. However, there are no such cases in Colorado which correctly found that the balisong knife can be considered a gravity knife or not. Still, you shouldn’t possess it, either way, to stay away from the trouble.

Formal law on concealed knives

Concealed knives are the ones who can’t be carried in public covered. They should be visible to the public eye and shouldn’t be hidden or covered.

18-12-105. Unlawfully carrying a concealed weapon – unlawful possession of weapons

(1) A person commits a class 2 misdemeanor if such person knowingly and unlawfully:

(a) Carries a knife concealed on or about his or her person;

“Knife” means any dagger, dirk, knife, or stiletto with a blade over three and one-half inches in length, or any other dangerous instrument capable of inflicting cutting, stabbing, or tearing wounds, but does not include a hunting or fishing knife carried for sports use. The issue that a knife is a hunting or fishing knife must be raised as an affirmative defense.

Breakdown of the above law

Let’s go through this law in simple English so we know exactly what the law wants you to do because any misunderstandings in above might get you in trouble. It is much better to be clear about these laws.

It is not legal to carry any pocket knife other than for fishing and hunting which can be carried concealed and whose blade length is more than 3.5 inches. Concealed knives specifically mean that these knives shouldn’t be kept away from public eye and they are considered concealed if they are out of sight and close enough for effective use on the go. However, you can keep these knives at home or your property. You can also keep these knives while you are driving because they are for safety purposes and not with the intention of hurting anyone.

In 2001, it was concluded that any knife less than 3.5 inches of blade length can be carried and can’t be considered as a weapon if it is intended for security purposes only.

Final words

So to conclude it finally, you can carry any knife with a blade length of 3.5 inches as long as it is not gravity knife or ballistic knife. Please be careful about the laws regarding the knife possession in different states because any mistakes in these areas can be harmful to you and you may have to face jail time for any action against the outlined law by state.


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