Recently, Texas Governor Greg Abbott signed a sharp bill into law, effectively removing restrictions on the use and possession of several types of knives and other edged weapons.
HB 1935 replaces the term “illegal knife” with “location-restricted knife” in laws regarding punishments for the use of firearms or clubbing weapons.
The types of edged weapons that are no longer restricted include:
“(A) a knife with a blade over five and one-half inches;
(B) a hand instrument designed to cut or stab another by being thrown; (e.g. throwing knives, “ninja stars”*)
(C) a dagger, including a dirk, stiletto, and poniard;
(D) a Bowie knife;
(E) a sword; or
(F) a spear.”
The law removes restrictions on possessing such weapons, carrying them into public or selling them to underage buyers.
HB 1935 still restricts users from carrying these weapons onto college campuses, nursing homes, sporting events and establishments that sell alcohol. The law also prohibits school-age children from carrying these types of weapons on school grounds or during school activities.
The new regulations come following a loosening of Texas’ so-called “illegal knife” laws:
In 2013, the legislature removed the restrictions on the possession of switchblade knives. Two years later, legislators voted to pass a law prohibiting local jurisdictions from making ordinances regarding knives more restrictive than those same laws at the state level.
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These changes also follow the Texas trend of “open carry” laws:
In January 2016, a law allowing an open carry of firearms, except in bars and other establishments, took effect.
The knife “open carry” law goes into effect on September 1.