Prohibited Weapons in the Lone Star State

Texas is a state of big ideas, big politics and big weapons. If you are a Lone Star State resident and love weapons, you need to understand that certain weapons are prohibited. You can get into big trouble with the law if you fail to comply.

Under the Texas Prohibited Weapons law, it is illegal to knowingly possess, manufacture or sell:

  • An explosive weapon
  • A machine gun
  • A short-barrel firearm
  • A firearm silencer
  • A switchblade knife
  • Knuckles
  • Armor-piercing ammunition
  • A chemical dispensing device
  • A zip gun

If you are found in possession of one of these weapons and are charged, you might have a defense if:

  • You were performing official duties of the armed forces, National Guard, governmental law enforcement agency or correctional facility
  • Your possession was pursuant to registration under the National Firearms Act
  • Your conduct was incidental to dealing with a switchblade, spring blade knife, or short-barrel firearm solely as an antique or curio
  • You were dealing with armor-piercing ammunition solely for the purpose of making ammunition available to the armed forces, National Guard, governmental law enforcement agency or correctional facility.

It is illegal to carry a firearm or prohibited weapon at the following places: schools, polling places, courts, racetracks, secured areas of airports, and within 1,000 feet of a correctional facility on the date of an execution.

Many people wrongly believe that if they forgot or didn’t intentionally carry the weapon in one of the prohibited places, their case should be dismissed. However, in Texas, the unintentional but reckless carrying of the weapon can be a violation.

You may apply for a license to carry. To obtain one you must be qualified to purchase a handgun under state and federal laws. You cannot have a felony conviction (or a misdemeanor conviction less than five years old), pending criminal charges, chemical or alcohol dependency, certain psychiatric diagnoses, restraining orders, or tax or child support defaults.

If you have questions about the legality of certain weapons, consult with a Texas criminal defense lawyer today.

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