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blades taken by police - advice please

Discussion in 'Bushcraft Chatter' started by baldscot, Aug 17, 2012.

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  1. boatman

    boatman Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    Of course to show a knife to somebody else, "flashing it" is a perfectly valid reason. How can they see it if they want to without it being in the open. Sheer nonsense that the knives etc must be concealed and secure while travelling in the car. legal is legal and if there is an exemption or valid reason then they could be surrounded by spotlights and still be legal. The real problem is police ignorance or wilful abuse of power.
     
  2. rik_uk3

    rik_uk3 Banned

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    Well written sensible reply.
     
  3. Doc

    Doc Need to contact Admin...

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    I think this thread illuminates one very important issue: it is illegal to possess a fixed blade knife in public without ‘reasonable excuse’. I happen to think this is a good law that makes the streets safer, while not criminalising chefs and campers.

    But that leaves a gray area of what constitutes ‘reasonable excuse.’ It would not be possible to draft a law that covers every possible circumstance. In the first instance, if the police doubt the ‘reasonable excuse’ they are perfectly entitled to arrest, pass the file to the procurator fiscal/CPS, and if they decide to proceed then it’s for the court to decide if the excuse is reasonable.

    If that happens you’re in for a tough time, even if found not guilty – there’s the risk of a criminal record that might cost you your job, legal bills, months of worry, etc. I’d say that this is a situation best avoided.

    The view on here is that camping/bushcraft is a reasonable excuse, and looking at the UK Policing online forum, that seems to be the view of most police officers but it depends on the exact circumstances. There is a thread on there about two people camping who had knives confiscated, and many of the PCs seem to agree with that decision, with some arguing they should have been arrested as well. In that particular case they were camping in a very urban area, admitted to using drugs, and the knife was a machete. I suspect the court would have thrown it out if it had got that far, but maybe not.

    If we expect the police to use their discretion sensibly, I think we should do the same:

    - Take great care to avoid alarming a member of the public. Most people live in cities and many of them do see knives as weapons rather than tools
    - Huge aggressive looking knives are not the best tools for the environments found in Britain, are more likely to alarm people and make it harder to demonstrate reasonable excuse.
    - Don’t take enough cold steel to arm a regiment. I take a single knife on trips, plus a folding saw.
    - Avoid alcohol consumption or display until the cutting tools are packed away for the night
    - Make sure your reasonable excuse is genuine and obvious – camping gear or fishing tackle.
    - Be in a rural environment where you have a right to be. The more remote the better. Trossachs National Park research shows people camp an average of 29 metres from their car. I typically camp eight or ten miles from my car and I’ve never seen a policeman. I don’t see many people at all.
    - Don’t do anything illegal or dodgy, or annoy anyone
    - If the police do interview you, make sure you pass the ‘attitude test’.

    The police don’t make the law, but the law is clear. In the worst case scenario, you might need to demonstrate reasonable excuse under hostile cross-examination in court. If your reasonable excuse, and responsible attitude is blindingly obvious, it’s very unlikely things will go that far.
     
  4. Swallow

    Swallow Native

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    It was explicitly stated in SWAT magazine many years ago (in that case with regard to the muzzle velocity of air rifles) that "ignorance is no excuse under the law".
     
  5. AndyP

    AndyP Full Member

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    It is deemed a public place. It is illegal to carry knives in your car unless you have a valid reason.
     
  6. baldscot

    baldscot Tenderfoot

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    Just got in from work and logged on to check thread - i'm a bit overwhelmed by the response and never dreamed it would cause such debate.

    Thanks to all for your responses, and for the support.

    Special thanks to the moderators for not locking the thread (yet), and for the warnings re: politics

    I'm to slow at typing to respond to all these, i'm not sure if this is expected but I will try to answer any questions anyone has about the situation.

    Thanks again
     
  7. rik_uk3

    rik_uk3 Banned

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    Edited ........
     
    #207 rik_uk3, Aug 21, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 22, 2012
  8. Silverclaws

    Silverclaws Forager

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    The issue of cars and what is in them, I have just had a search and there a lot of bladed articles in there that need to come out I guess, from the billhook and Mora I use out at the smithy to the knife in my toolbox in the back, which I deem a mechanics tool I keep my toolbox in my car because my car is twenty years old and well just in case, besides out at the smithy I repair machines. The billhook and the Mora used to be kept at the smithy, but when i needed to do stuff at home y tools were not available, so the car boot seemed a good half way position, but it seems as I use my car for other than going out there, the blades need to come out, where I will forget them and end up without my tools when I need them, but such is life in Britain of today, a complete hassle in so many respects.
     
  9. boatman

    boatman Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)

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    And what of efforts made to increase the power of a confiscated air rifle in order or prosecute under the "capable of exceeding 12ftb? Abuse of police powers or keeping the streets safe?
     
  10. Dartmoor navigator

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    Are you suggesting the rozzers would fit someone up by tweeking their pellet gun for them?
     
  11. Jock

    Jock Forager

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    Edited ........
     
    #211 Jock, Aug 21, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 22, 2012
  12. Robbi

    Robbi Full Member

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    bet you wish you hadn't posted that.
     
  13. tinderbox

    tinderbox Forager

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    I'm glad he did, it's an excellent analogy.
     
  14. darrenleroy

    darrenleroy Nomad

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    Well put. Perception often trumps reality.
     
  15. Dartmoor navigator

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    Edited .....
     
    #215 Dartmoor navigator, Aug 22, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 22, 2012
  16. darrenleroy

    darrenleroy Nomad

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    Ha ha. Brilliant. Outlandish but perfectly sums up the idiocy of the current 'group think' in this country.

    I'll remember not to take my cheese knife out with me on my next picnic in case a family sitting nearby see me flashing it before slicing a wedge of Jarlsberg to pieces and call the police.
     
    #216 darrenleroy, Aug 22, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 22, 2012
  17. tinderbox

    tinderbox Forager

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    What do you mean it's not detachable, have you any idea what feminist sociology lecturers can do with a pair of scissors. Zealots never have a sense of the absurd.
     
  18. baldscot

    baldscot Tenderfoot

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    Haha - i will definetley avoid asking them about appropriate use of my penis. Unfortunately, I have no option other than to take it with me :yikes:
     
    #218 baldscot, Aug 22, 2012
    Last edited by a moderator: Aug 22, 2012
  19. Dartmoor navigator

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    Baldscot, is it today that you are visiting the police station again?

    If so, then keep your head high an good luck. I hope they see sense and just let you have your tools back.

    :)
     
  20. The Lord Poncho

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    Edited .....
     
    #220 The Lord Poncho, Aug 22, 2012
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