Seminole County Carrying a Concealed Weapon Attorney

If you are accused of carrying a concealed weapon in Seminole County concealed weapons attorney Kevin J. Pitts can help. The law on carrying a concealed weapon in Florida can be confusing and can end up with someone who had no idea they were breaking the law ending up behind bars. If you are accused of carrying a concealed weapon in Sanford or Seminole County our Seminole County concealed weapons lawyer has the experience to make sure you get the best possible result in your case. Contact the Seminole County concealed weapons lawyer Kevin J. Pitts at 407-268-3688 to set up a free consultation with a former prosecutor. With offices in Sanford and Daytona Beach Mr. Pitts handles cases from Daytona Beach, DeLand, Sanford, Lake Mary, Winter Springs, Altamonte Springs and throughout Volusia County and Seminole County.

The term "concealed weapon" means any dirk, metallic knuckles, slungshot, billie, tear gas gun, chemical weapon or device, or other deadly weapon carried on or about a person in such a manner as to conceal the weapon from the ordinary sight of another person. The prohibition against carrying concealed weapons or firearms is designed to prevent a person with a weapon from taking some undue advantage over an unsuspecting adversary who is not aware that the person is carrying a weapon.

It is not a violation of the statute for a person to carry for purposes of lawful self-defense, in a concealed manner, a self-defense chemical spray or a nonlethal stun gun or dart-firing stun gun or other nonlethal electric weapon or device that is designed solely for defensive purposes. However, the statute does not preclude any prosecution for the use of an electric weapon or device, a dart-firing stun gun, or a self-defense chemical spray during the commission of any criminal offense pursuant to statute, or for any other criminal offense.

The statutory definition of "weapon" expressly excludes the common pocketknife. Whether a pocketknife qualifies as exempt from the statutory definition of "weapon" is a question for the jury. In one case, an 8-inch folding knife with a 3-inch blade was found to be a "common pocketknife" under the legislature's intended definition of "common pocketknife" and, thus, exempt from the statutory definition of weapon. Additionally, a knife that a juvenile was carrying in his pocket, which had a four-inch blade that folded into the handle, was not open, and did not contain any weapon-like characteristics, fell within the pocketknife statutory exception to the definition of a weapon. On the other hand, a folding knife with a pointed 3-inch blade, notched combat-style grip, and a large metal hilt guard, was not a "common pocketknife" but rather was a characteristic weapon and, therefore, was not excepted from the definition of "weapon." A steak knife carried by the defendant was a "dirk" within meaning of the statute prohibiting carrying concealed weapon: the knife was a not pocket knife and had sizable fixed blade and capacity to be used as stabbing weapon. The definitions of "concealed weapon" and "concealed firearm" require that the weapon or firearm be carried on or about a person in such a manner as to conceal the weapon or firearm from the ordinary sight of another person. Thus, in order to prove that a weapon is "concealed," the weapon must be on or about the person and hidden from the ordinary sight of another person. A firearm is on or about the person if it is in close proximity to the person within his or her easy reach. This generally includes the interior of an automobile and the vehicle's glove compartment, whether or not locked.

An ice pick in the possession of the defendant at the time and place of his arrest could not qualify as a concealed weapon, where the police officers saw the ice pick in the defendant's car after they had stopped him for a traffic violation and were administering roadside sobriety tests, and there was no evidence that the defendant used it in a threatening manner before it was retrieved by a police officer. A table knife which clearly was not designed for stabbing nor was it well suited for that purpose, but was designed to cut prepared food on a plate, was not a dirk. Moreover, the knife was never displayed or used in a threatening manner; thus, it did not constitute a deadly weapon. Also, a small bat was not a weapon within the meaning of the concealed weapon statute. It did not qualify as a "deadly weapon" because there was no evidence that it was normally dangerous or deadly when used in its ordinary and usual manner. Only if the small bat could be characterized as a "billie" would it fall within the statutory definition. Although the term "billie" is not statutorily defined, the plain and ordinary meaning of it does not include a small baseball bat, which could also be a souvenir from a professional baseball game or a children's toy. The bat was not designed to be used only to strike a person. On the other hand, a conviction for carrying a concealed weapon was supported by evidence that, when the defendant was arrested, he was carrying a long straight-edged razor in his back pocket, despite his contention that the razor was for grooming purposes.

To be convicted under a concealed weapon statute, the defendant must have carried and concealed one of the items listed in the statute, or a weapon considered to be a "deadly weapon." A "deadly weapon" is generally defined as any instrument which, when used in the ordinary manner contemplated by its design and construction, will or is likely to cause death or great bodily harm. An object can become a deadly weapon if its sole modern use is to cause great bodily harm. In addition, an object can be construed as a deadly weapon because of its use or threatened use during a crime. For more information contact Seminole County criminal defense lawyer Kevin J. Pitts