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What is Possession of Prohibited Weapon in DC

Possession of Prohibited Weapon in DCWhat is possession of prohibited weapon in DC?  Possession of prohibited weapon is a misdemeanor in the District of Columbia, codified at DC Code 22-4514 Possession of prohibited weapon is broken down into two categories:

  • possession of certain weapons
  • use of a weapon used unlawfully against another.  


Possession of Any of these Items is Illegal in DC:

  • machine gun,
  • sawed-off shotgun,
  • bump stock,
  • knuckles,
  • blackjack,
  • slungshot,
  • sand club,
  • sandbag,
  • switchblade knife, nor any instrument, attachment, or
  • appliance for causing the firing of any firearm to be silent
Possession of prohibited weapon is codified at DC. Code 22-4514


Use of Any of these Items is illegal with intent to use unlawfully against another:

  • imitation pistol,
  • a dagger,
  • dirk,
  • razor,
  • stiletto,
  • knife with a blade longer than 3 inches,
  • other dangerous weapon

What is the Maximum Penalty for Possession of Prohibited Weapon?

The maximum penalty for possession of prohibited weapon is 1 year and/or $2500.00 penalty.  If violation occurs after such person has been convicted in the District of Columbia of a violation of this section, or of a felony, either in the District of Columbia or in another jurisdiction, in which case such person shall be imprisoned for not more than 10 years.

Is it legal to carry a knife in DC

Yes you can carry a knife in DC as long as the knife is not a switchblade.   You can not possess a knife with a blade longer than 3 inches if you use unlawfully against another.  

Is it legal to carry Pepper Spray or Mace in DC?

Yes pursuant to DC Code § 7–2502.13. it is lawful to possess pepper spray or Mace as long as labeled with or accompanied by clearly written instructions as to its use, and dated to indicate its anticipated useful life.

Is Possession of Prohibited Weapon a misdemeanor?

Yes, possession of a prohibited weapon is a misdemeanor unless convicted of this previously or convicted of a felony.  

What happens if I am charged with possession of prohibited weapon in the District of Columbia

Most people charged with possession of prohibited weapon usually will receive a citation to appear in Court unless you have been previously charged or have other charges with it.   Most people charged with this offense are also charged with assault.  

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