According to California Penal Code Section 16470, a "non-locking folding knife" or "pocket knife" may be used as a stabbing weapon "only if the blade of the knife is revealed and locked into place." Thus, a folding knife cannot be used as a stabbing instrument unless the blade is exposed and locked into place. Many folding knives have locking mechanisms that will keep the blade in the open position even when not being used as a tool.
People use folding knives for many different reasons. Some people use them as tools by opening and closing the blades to perform tasks such as cutting vegetables for cooking or removing thorns from plants. Other people enjoy using their folding knives as weapons by hiding the blade inside the handle and slashing at trees, bushes, and other objects with the sharp edge of the knife. This type of violence is called "knife violence". Knife violence is a common occurrence in countries where there are large numbers of people who rely on folding knives for their daily survival. Countries like India and China suffer from widespread knife violence because residents believe that exposing and using a folding knife in a fight makes them more powerful.
In addition to being used as a weapon, folding knives can also be used as an art form. Some artists use folding knives as their only tool to create works of art.
"Knives are considered lethal force weapons by the courts; hence, they should only be used in cases when the individual reasonably feels he or she is in risk of serious bodily damage or death, or to defend someone from the same," McBroom explains...
Any knife, however, becomes an offensive weapon if handled in a threatening manner. Police agencies organize firearms amnesties on a regular basis, during which you are allowed to surrender an offensive weapon without fear of punishment. The police would reply to you based on the facts of your case. There is no general rule regarding knives; each case must be judged on its own merits.
In general, though, if you are found to be in possession of an illegal weapon, you will be arrested and charged with unlawful possession of a firearm or other offense depending on the type of weapon involved. If you have a legal right to own the knife, you cannot be charged with any crime related to it. However, even if the knife is legally yours, there are situations where using it as a weapon could lead to charges being filed against you. For example: if you attack someone with it, or if they suffer serious injuries because of it- you could be held responsible.
Many states have laws that prohibit people from carrying weapons in certain areas such as schools and hospitals. If you are found with a knife after these hours, it can become an offensive weapon. You should know the local carry laws before you go out shopping or visiting friends. If you do not, you might get arrested for criminal trespass.
Even if you have a license to carry a concealed weapon, this does not give you permission to use it as an offensive weapon.
A pocket knife can be used for self-defense. Although little, these blades are sharp and lethal, and the mere appearance of one can deter a potential assailant. However, you should be aware that pocket knives may do significant harm and, as a result, can result in legal complications if used in self-defense. For example, they can be used to commit murder.
The use of deadly force is only acceptable if you reasonably believe that your life is in danger or that someone else's life is in danger. If you use the knife for any other reason, such as to eat meat or pick herbs, you could be charged with a crime.
The police can help you if you are arrested for using a pocket knife in self-defense. An attorney will be able to assess whether there was reasonable cause to fear for your safety and, if so, file charges against the attacker. Evidence such as the manner in which you carried out your defense, the type of knife you used, and how much pain the assailant showed during the confrontation can all help determine liability.
An experienced attorney will be able to advise you on what actions would have prevented you from being held liable for the death of your attacker. For example, if you had not been drinking alcohol before the incident occurred, then you could argue that it was the alcohol that led to you losing control of yourself and killing another person.