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Thread: Less lethal legality in Seattle and WAshington generally?

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    Trying to figure out what less lethal options are legal in Seattle and Washington generally, and not having much luck. I'm specifically curious about expandable batons, pepper spray, and tasers -- but anything anyone can come up with would be helpful. Thanks.

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    Pepper spray is legal in all of washington.
    I have not found anything that restricts a baton or taser but it could be there somewhere.

    Also you can carry a knife as long as it is not a "dangerous knife"


    Exerpt from SMC 12 definitions
    Code:
    A. "Dangerous knife" means any fixed-blade knife and any other knife
    having a blade more than three and one-half inches (3 1/2") in length.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

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    Bellingham restricts electronic weapons (i.e. Tasers), IIRC. You can do a search of threads; it has been discussed multiple times. Seattle restricts carry of knives with blades greater than 3.5 inches and all fixed-blade knives.

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    sean-1286 wrote:
    Bellingham restricts electronic weapons (i.e. Tasers), IIRC. You can do a search of threads; it has been discussed multiple times. Seattle restricts carry of knives with blades greater than 3.5 inches and all fixed-blade knives.
    I'm sure it has, but I've been poking around and no luck.

    Thanks for the responses so far though.

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    Bellingham restricts everything but a lawfully carried firearm. They are not allowed to restrict pepper spray under state law but they have a code that does anyway.
    "A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity."

    "though I walk through the valley in the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for I know that you are by my side" Glock 23:40

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    Legislation is certainly needed to address the inconsistency of codes relating to LTL devices and knives. It makes no sense that the holder of a CPL cannot carry a Tazer in Bellingham. Likewise, why should a cop be able to carry a fixed-blade knife or 5" folder, but a CPL holder cannot? The laws actually encourage people to carry a firearm instead of a LTL device.

    If we find a legislator to address the issues with firearm pre-emption, perhaps LTL devices can be added to the legislation, and knives also. Nickels is sure to try to get legislation that weakens the firearm pre-emption, so as another post suggests there needs to be counterpoint legislation. The argument for full pre-emption of all weapons is logical to us, but clear rationale would need to be developed for letters and hearings. Examples of somebody getting pinched for having the "wrong" knife or a Tazer would be useful.

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    When I read the post name I have to admit my first thought was "Ooo a post on rubber bullets"

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    Regular Member amlevin's Avatar
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    It's probably just me but I don't have the desire or see the need, as a plain old citizen, to carry a LTL option. I don't have any responsibility to engage some wacko in the performance of my duties as a LEO might have to. I only have an obligation to protect my own life and limb as well as my family's. If it comes to that I have no intention of using progressive options. If someone places my life in jeopardy I will use the ONE option I carry and it is definitely LETHAL. As for a knife, I use one to open my mail, cut package tape, and sometimes my fingernails. A taser is best suited for use in Law Enforcement scenarios, not SD. It often proves to be a stopper but in that case when it isn't you better have a whole bunch of friends handy to save your butt because it is about to get severly kicked.

    Just my opinion and it has served me well for many years.
    "If I shoot all the ammo I am carrying I either won't need anymore or more won't help"

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    Likewise, why should a cop be able to carry a fixed-blade knife or 5" folder, but a CPL holder cannot? The laws actually encourage people to carry a firearm instead of a LTL device.
    That almost reads like you're calling a knife a "LTL device".

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    Bellingham restricts everything but a lawfully carried firearm. They are not allowed to restrict pepper spray under state law but they have a code that does anyway.
    You know, I'd really like a$$hole politicians like this to be fully accountable to the public. They need to explain to each and every one of us where in the hell they get off crafting rules that preclude any possibility of protecting ourselves. Thank God we have state pre-emption for firearms. I've heard the anti-firearms rules and while I don't agree with them in any way, shape or form, I understand why certain people think they are a good idea. But pepper spray? Are you kidding me? So, all tools are illegal, therefore the guy with the bigger fists wins? How is that even remotely acceptable to the people who live in Bellingham?

    The right of self defense, and the use and carry of various tools to assure that right, should be federally protected under the United States Constitution.

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    amlevin wrote:
    It's probably just me but I don't have the desire or see the need, as a plain old citizen, to carry a LTL option. I don't have any responsibility to engage some wacko in the performance of my duties as a LEO might have to. I only have an obligation to protect my own life and limb as well as my family's. If it comes to that I have no intention of using progressive options. If someone places my life in jeopardy I will use the ONE option I carry and it is definitely LETHAL. As for a knife, I use one to open my mail, cut package tape, and sometimes my fingernails. A taser is best suited for use in Law Enforcement scenarios, not SD. It often proves to be a stopper but in that case when it isn't you better have a whole bunch of friends handy to save your butt because it is about to get severly kicked.

    Just my opinion and it has served me well for many years.
    Because when all you have is a hammer, everything starts to look like a nail?


    Just my 2 cents

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    Being a biker I recently asked my local gun store about carrying of tactical batons. I generally have one in my car and on my person along with a concealed pistol when on my bike. According to The Bulls Eye in Tacoma WA, carrying of batons is LEGAL in KING COUNTY but ILLEGAL in PIERCE COUNTY. Other than that I have no further information except to say I was stopped recently while on my bike late at night traveling through Pacific along the border between King and Pierce counties (the road I was on is the divider). The cop was nervous and took my openly visible baton from my back pocket, asked about weapons, ran my permit and let me go with no mention of the baton possibly being restricted in some counties

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    Charles Paul Lincoln wrote:
    Legislation is certainly needed to address the inconsistency of codes relating to LTL devices and knives. It makes no sense that the holder of a CPL cannot carry a Tazer in Bellingham. Likewise, why should a cop be able to carry a fixed-blade knife or 5" folder, but a CPL holder cannot? The laws actually encourage people to carry a firearm instead of a LTL device.

    If we find a legislator to address the issues with firearm pre-emption, perhaps LTL devices can be added to the legislation, and knives also. Nickels is sure to try to get legislation that weakens the firearm pre-emption, so as another post suggests there needs to be counterpoint legislation. The argument for full pre-emption of all weapons is logical to us, but clear rationale would need to be developed for letters and hearings. Examples of somebody getting pinched for having the "wrong" knife or a Tazer would be useful.
    yeah, but how many college girls would you trust to know when to use and when to stop using a stun gun?

    granted I dislike the law, however it does have the plus of keeping that girl that you accidentally bumped into in a bar from going stun happy and causing serious injury.

    atleast with a gun or your knuckles or a knife the average person understands what is going to happen, not everyone knows that with proper (or improper) use of LTL arms they can become very lethal.

    again, just because someone is going to misconstrue this as me being for this law... I am against it, just stating possible reasoning.

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    How many college girls would you trust to carry a gun? There is no law preventing those 21 or over from carrying on campus or anywhere else -- only policy on campus. And, in our state there is no training requirement. I think most of us can probably name one or more person's that probably need more training, sometimes a lot more, but they still carry. I'd rather be tazed than shot if a college gal mistook me for a threat.

    The point is that in some jurisdictions it is essentially carry a gun or nothing. Our state constitution says we are guaranteed the right to bear "arms" for self defense, not "firearms." Check the Heller decision. The Court clearly noted that "arms" includes other tools than guns. Some jurisdictions in Washington are therefore violating the constitution -- it is logical that if legislators are going to block Nickels, they should address lesser weapons at the same time.

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    Charles Paul Lincoln wrote:
    How many college girls would you trust to carry a gun? There is no law preventing those 21 or over from carrying on campus or anywhere else -- only policy on campus. And, in our state there is no training requirement. I think most of us can probably name one or more person's that probably need more training, sometimes a lot more, but they still carry. I'd rather be tazed than shot if a college gal mistook me for a threat.

    The point is that in some jurisdictions it is essentially carry a gun or nothing. Our state constitution says we are guaranteed the right to bear "arms" for self defense, not "firearms." Check the Heller decision. The Court clearly noted that "arms" includes other tools than guns. Some jurisdictions in Washington are therefore violating the constitution -- it is logical that if legislators are going to block Nickels, they should address lesser weapons at the same time.
    I was saying I'd trust more with a gun because the possible lethality is more obvious.

    Kinda like all these idiots in bellingham driving thinking 4 wheel drive makes snow a non-issue.... but still almost running into me.

    One more time though, its a stupid law and I believe it shouldn't be there.

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    Sorry, I misunderstood your point about college girls.

    We agree. On the idiots driving in the snow, too.

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    Three inch knife is illegal to conceal, and I know that from my own case.

    Tazer qualifies as a "weapon capable of producing bodily harm," which you can't brandish in a way that causes concern for others. (I read this in a case law.) But you can conceal it because it is not capable of causing death (The fact that something like 1,000 people have died from tazers does not matter. I'm serious.)

    I know mace is legal to carry as long as you are 14 and have your parents permission I think. It's not lethal, so concealment is not an isssue.

    Batons can kill. Just don't conceal it.

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    "granted I dislike the law, however it does have the plus of keeping that girl that you accidentally bumped into in a bar from going stun happy and causing serious injury."



    It all comes down to rights. They have the right to be armed. If they do the wrong thing, they will be prosecuted for it. There should be no prior restraint in the law, particularly when it comes to self defense.



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    I disagree. If you bump into a girl in a bar, or walk by one late at night on a university campus and she gets all Taser happy she will not be charged with anything. All she would have to do is tell the prosecuting atty. that she felt threatened and acted. There would be virtually no consequences for her. There is a defensive double standard.

    For example, If I, a 6 ft 3 in 220lb male, was walking across campus late at night and had a shady person was to come walking up on me and I Tased or spray him, I would go to jail. If it was a female acting defensively, she would be hugged, coddled, protected and told she did great and is an example of strength based upon her gender. Even if the man was just another student walking home after class and posed no threat.

    ETA I know this from personal experience. I had a chick spray at me as I was walking out of class one night. I was in uniform heading home, she panicked and tried to hose me down.

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    actually there is no restriction on blades here in bellingham, and i've never heard of a ban on pepper spray (may still be one i dunno. but tasers and all other "energygy weapons" are illegal

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    Charles Paul Lincoln wrote:
    How many college girls would you trust to carry a gun?* There is no law preventing those 21 or over from carrying on campus or anywhere else -- only policy on campus.* And, in our state there is no training requirement.* I think most of us can probably name one or more person's that probably need more training, sometimes a lot more, but they still carry.* I'd rather be tazed than shot if a college gal mistook me for a threat.

    The point is that in some jurisdictions it is essentially carry a gun or nothing.* Our state constitution says we are guaranteed the right to bear "arms" for self defense, not "firearms."* Check the Heller decision.* The Court clearly noted that "arms" includes other tools than guns.* Some jurisdictions in Washington are therefore violating the constitution -- it is logical that if legislators are going to block Nickels, they should address lesser weapons at the same time.
    What do you have against college girls?

    I'm not sure you have a point, although I'll agree with your (unrelated) conclusion that the 2nd amendment protects arms other than just firearms.

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    Vandal wrote:
    I disagree. If you bump into a girl in a bar, or walk by one late at night on a university campus and she gets all Taser happy she will not be charged with anything. All she would have to do is tell the prosecuting atty. that she felt threatened and acted. There would be virtually no consequences for her. There is a defensive double standard.

    For example, If I, a 6 ft 3 in 220lb male, was walking across campus late at night and had a shady person was to come walking up on me and I Tased or spray him, I would go to jail. If it was a female acting defensively, she would be hugged, coddled, protected and told she did great and is an example of strength based upon her gender. Even if the man was just another student walking home after class and posed no threat.

    ETA I know this from personal experience. I had a chick spray at me as I was walking out of class one night. I was in uniform heading home, she panicked and tried to hose me down.
    While I'm sorry about your bad experience being at the business end of a defense device, I have to say that I believe that there is usually a disparity of force between a male and a female, and especially a large male vs. a small female.

    I mean, sure, there are some buff chicks out that there that could snap me in half like a twig, but the average girl on the street vs. the average guy, most of the time, the guy's got the advantage.

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    amlevin wrote:
    It's probably just me but I don't have the desire or see the need, as a plain old citizen, to carry a LTL option. I don't have any responsibility to engage some wacko in the performance of my duties as a LEO might have to. I only have an obligation to protect my own life and limb as well as my family's. If it comes to that I have no intention of using progressive options. If someone places my life in jeopardy I will use the ONE option I carry and it is definitely LETHAL. As for a knife, I use one to open my mail, cut package tape, and sometimes my fingernails. A taser is best suited for use in Law Enforcement scenarios, not SD. It often proves to be a stopper but in that case when it isn't you better have a whole bunch of friends handy to save your butt because it is about to get severly kicked.

    Just my opinion and it has served me well for many years.
    The thing that spurned this thread for me was that I had a wacko -- an aggressive panhandler, specifically -- start pursuing me after trying to steal my laptop bag (luckily it was across my chest instead of over my shoulder, or he'd have gotten it). As it was, I got luckily, and attempting to flag down a police officer that was driving by was enough to turn him the other way. However, had he continued to pursue, and forced me to act, a less lethal option would have been nice to have.

    Even though I pretty shaken up, and definitely in a great deal of fear, it's unlikely that the situation would stand up to an AJOP analysis. Even if you threw out preclusion (since WA is a stand your ground state), it's likely he wouldn't have been considered to have the ability to do me serious bodily harm without some sort of weapon (which could have easily been produced once it was too late for me to do anything about it). A lethal response would likely have been inappropriate, even though he just attacked me and is now following me.

    The incident occurred on a densely populated sidewalk, where it's unlikely I could make a shot without endangering someone behind him. Overexposure to OC or a baton is one thing; overexposure to high velocity flying lead is another.

    I carried pepper spray before I was old enough to legally carry a firearm. The incident has me seriously thinking about carrying them both.

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