Knife Laws In Iowa


Knife Laws In Iowa

Iowa’s policies against knives are very comforting. However, the tranquil policies have created a baffling situation and a common man is confused to know the real legislation for knives. We made an arduous effort to make the situation bit clear for the citizen, migrants, and tourists. However, it is sure that people can use survival knives to defend themselves. Iowa knife law is kindlier than the legislation of other states. Most of the knives and blades are permissible to carry in Iowa. Some legal customs are made for the well-being of the citizens in Iowa because mostly people mishandle the leniency granted by the state regarding knives and blades.

Iowa is a striking tourist spot

Iowa’s geographical existence is attractive to tourists. It is located in the Midwestern part of the United States bordered by the Mississippi River. Not only renowned for its historical memorials but the soothing climate of the state is also loved by the citizens and tourists. The presence of tourists in the state urges the government to impose knife-related laws to keep peace and harmony. A safe and secure state is not only a comfortable place for the citizen but also a calm and ideal place for tourists.

The definition of “Knife Crimes”

Iowa Code section 724.4 explains the multiple knives that can land the holder in trouble and put him behind bars. The law presumes a knife crime as,

“All knives are legal for open carry, it is illegal to conceal carry a knife with a blade of more than 5 inches. It is also illegal to possess a ballistic knife that is propelled by a spring-operated mechanism, elastic material, or compressed gas”

Crimes for Carrying a Dangerous Weapon or Knife

The crime of “carrying a weapon” can involve:

  • Go armed with a “dangerous weapon” concealed on or about their person which is an aggravated misdemeanor;
  • Go armed with a knife concealed on or about the person and the person uses the knife in the commission of a crime which is an aggravated misdemeanor;

Go armed with a knife concealed on or about the person and the person and the blade exceeds 8 inches long, then the crime is an aggravated misdemeanor.

Legal compensations

  • Crimes involving a knife charged as an aggravated misdemeanor are punishable by up to two years’ incarceration or up to one year in jail and a fine of $625 to $6,250 plus 35% criminal surcharge and court costs.”
  • “Go armed with a knife concealed on or about the person when the blade exceeds 5 inches but does not exceed 8 inches, then the person can be charged with a serious misdemeanor. Crimes charged as a serious misdemeanor are punishable by up to one year in jail and a fine of $315 to $1,875 plus 35% criminal surcharge and court costs.”

The Definition of a Dangerous Weapon in Iowa

The term dangerous weapon is defined under Iowa Code section 702.7 as:

“Any instrument or device; designed primarily for use in inflicting death or injury; upon a human being or animal; which is capable of inflicting death upon a human being; and when used in the manner for which it was designed.”

The exception to the rule

It is pertinent to note that the definition of a dangerous weapon does not include a bow and arrow when owned and used for hunting.

Iowa law also states,

“An item can be classified as a dangerous weapon when it is used in such a manner that indicates that the defendant intends to inflict death or serious injury upon the other, and which, when so used, is capable of inflicting death upon a human being”.

Examples of dangerous weapons

The list includes,

  • Pistol
  • Revolver
  • Firearms
  • Dagger
  • Razor
  • Stiletto
  • Switchblade knife
  • Knife having a blade exceeding five inches in length
  • Any portable device or weapon directing an electric current, impulse, wave, or beam that produces a high-voltage pulse intended to harm and halt a person

State Knife Law in Iowa

In Iowa (IA) treacherous weapons are revealed in Code 702.7 of Iowa Knife Law.

“A dangerous weapon is a device that is designed for inflicting injury or death. In the state, every type of knife is permissible to use, but some dangerous blades which can act as dangerous weapons are not tolerable. “

According to Iowa Knife Law,

“Visitors of the state can give, display, buy and sell different types of knives except for a Ballistic Knife.”

Concealed Carry Knife Law in Iowa

According to the Iowa Code of 2012 Section 724.4,

“You can only carry those knives by concealing which are legal to Iowa. If you carry illegal blades or knives by concealing, then you would be under serious misdemeanor that will result in a strict penalty.”

Defenses of Carrying a Concealed Knife or Weapon

Iowa law delivers several defenses to the crime of carrying a concealed knife or weapon including:

“Having a dangerous weapon in the dwelling, business, or land owned by that person; being a police officer, a correctional officer, or member of the armed forces or national guard who possesses the weapon as part of their duties; a person is lawfully engaged in target practice on a target range or is engaged in lawful hunting; a person is using a knife while hunting or fishing while engaged in lawful hunting or fishing; having a valid permit to carry weapons.”

Exception in Carrying Knife

As per Section 724.4.3.h, An exception is provided with the Iowa Knife Law,

“If sharp knives are required in your profession like hunting and fishing, then you can carry every type of knife, but you need a valid license for your occupation.”

Limitation on the Length of Knives in Iowa

According to Code 702.7 of Iowa Knife Law,

“One cannot conceal a knife which has a length of more than 5”. If any citizen or migrant of Iowa is found carrying a knife longer than 8” openly, then he or she might have to pay the severe compensation.”

Penalties for Different Types of Violations

The law has announced different legal compensations for breaching concealment knife law and carrying knives larger than 8”. You may have to bear legal consequences in the following ways for any desecration:

“If you violate the concealment knife law of Iowa, then you may be imprisoned for one year or you have to compensate $625-$6250. For carrying 5-8” knives and blades, you might be jailed for one year and you may have to compensate $315-$1,875.”

It is pertinent to note:

According to Code 724.4 of Iowa Knife Law,

“You can carry illegal knives only if you are allowed by the peace officer of the state. For that, you need to send a written application to the officer, and you will get written consent with a reply.”

Types of Legal Knives in Iowa

Finally, we have touched the roof and realized what is permissible and what is not. Let’s figure out the knife types that are legal to own, manufacture and sell under the Iowa knife legislation.

• Balisong

Balisong Knife’s roots are in the Philippines. After getting manufactured there, it became popular in the U.S. It is a weapon that is used for artistry, self-defense, and gaming purpose. Balisong or Butterfly Knife is legal to use in Iowa.

• Bowie Knives

Bowie Knife is also a long blade sword-like fighting knife. It is banned in many states in the US. It has a sharp blade which is often used by hunters, ranchers, and butchers. However, it is legal to use in Iowa if its length is less than 8”.

• Disguised Knives

The undetectable knives are usually for self-defense. They are permissible under knife laws in Iowa If the length of disguised knives such as lipstick knives, penknife, cane knives, etc. are not more than 5″.

• Fixed Blade Knives

A fixed blade knife has a rugged one-piece channel from handle to blade. If the knife has no automatic blade and is fixed, then it is legal to carry as per Iowa Knife Law.  Fixed blade knives are the most robust tool on the earth.

Types of Illegal Knives in Iowa

Some knives and blades are illegal, and you have to compensate for using, buying, selling, manufacturing, and carrying these knives.

• Ballistic Knives

According to Code 720.1 of Iowa Knife Law,

 “A ballistic knife is highly prohibited to carry in the state. The ballistic knife with a detachable blade is propelled by a spring-operated mechanism and elastic material. This knife is also an automatic blade, and it is not allowed to carry in Iowa.”

• Dagger

A dagger is a dangerously looking, extremely sharp large knife that is often used as a weapon or for self-defense. Because of its heftiness and sharpness, it is difficult to handle a dagger and can cause injury to the holder and also harm others. It is not allowed to use in Iowa because of its size which is more than 8”.

• Switchblade

Switchblade is an automatic knife, and it is anatomy that makes it outlawed. It is opened by pressing a switch or button of the knife. The automatic blades are often used in a concealed way and can be used for a felony, so it is not legal in Iowa.

Penalties for Using Illegal Knives in Iowa

According to Section 724.1,

Offensive weapons and illegal knives are not allowed to be used in Iowa. Breaching this law will fall under Class D Felony. It is also illegal to carry gas-powered, spring, and elastic knives in Iowa. You have to compensate $11,000 or you will be imprisoned for one year if you use illegal knives in Iowa and violate the legislation.”

The exception to the rule

As per Iowa knife laws,

“A correctional officer, police officer, armed forces, security guard, hunter, fisherman, and butcher can carry every type of knife and blade. These professionals should carry a valid permit for using these knives.”

Restricted Places to Carry Knife in Iowa

According to Iowa Knife Law,

“There are a few places where carrying, buying, selling, and using knives or blades are highly prohibited. If you carry knives in such places, then you may have to compensate for it.”

• Schools

 According to the Code 724.4 of Iowa Knife Law,

“You cannot carry knives, blades, and other dangerous weapons in schools. If an emergency arises, then you have to take permission from the peace officer of the state.”

• Airports

 As per the rule of the TSA officer report in Iowa,

“You cannot carry a single concealed or pen knife in an airport. “ 

• Public Vehicles

Carrying knives and blades in public vehicles such as metro, buses, and cars is also forbidden for the safety of the citizens of Iowa.

• Government Buildings

You should not carry knives and blades while visiting the court, post office, bank, and other government buildings.

• Private Properties

As per the law,

“You cannot carry knives and blades on any private property without the consent of the owner of the place, otherwise you might be kept behind the bar for six months.”

Penalties for Carrying Knives in Restricted Places

According to Iowa Knife Law,

“For violating the rules and carrying the knives in the restricted places, you have to compensate $3,000 or you might be imprisoned for six months.”

Bringing a Weapon or Knife to an Airport

According to the law,

“Accidentally bringing a weapon or knife to an airport can result in criminal charges with criminal penalties”

In addition to the criminal charges,

“TSA can levy a civil penalty of up to $11,000 against a passenger who brings a knife, firearm, or another type of prohibited weapon to the checkpoint. TSA reports that the average penalty for a loaded firearm is $3,000 and the average penalty for an unloaded firearm is $1,500.”

Bottom Line

Iowa knife laws are neither hard nor hard to follow. The law only puts a few restrictions and limits the blade size. The knives that are less than 5 inches can still count as perilous weapons if you mishandle them. So, it is rational to always abide by the state’s law. And the knife legislation is the same for all; the citizen of the state, new migrants, and tourists, all are bound to stick to the grounds of law.

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