– The General Assembly has approved and sent to the governor’s desk legislation authored by Rep. Martin Causer (R-Cameron/McKean/Potter) to end the state’s prohibition on automatic knives.
“Automatic knives are commonly used by outdoor enthusiasts like hunters, boaters and hikers, and by tradespeople like contractors, landscapers and mechanics,” Causer said. “They are legal in 43 states, but not in Pennsylvania. It’s time we get rid of this antiquated law that needlessly infringes on our rights and puts knife manufacturers here at a competitive disadvantage.”
“We appreciate Rep. Causer’s leadership on this legislation,” remarked Mark Paup, president and CEO of Zippo Manufacturing Company and W.R. Case & Sons Cutlery Company. “Removing Pennsylvania's prohibitive laws on automatic knives will be welcomed by knife owners throughout the Commonwealth while providing for continued business growth at Case. These types of knives are some of the best-selling found in the current marketplace, and we’re looking forward to introducing new Case-branded designs with the help of our own talent in Bradford, PA.”
Current law prohibits individuals from repairing, selling, dealing, using or possessing an “offensive weapon.” Included in the definition of an offensive weapon, along with bombs, grenades and machine guns, is automatic knives. Causer’s bill would simply remove automatic knives from the list of prohibited offensive weapons.
However, Causer emphasized, someone in possession of an automatic knife with the intent to employ it criminally would still be in violation of the state’s Crimes Code.
“This ensures we have a mechanism in place to continue to protect the community while also allowing my legislation to remove an outdated restriction on law-abiding people,” he said.
House Bill 1929
received overwhelming bipartisan support in both the House and Senate. Should the bill become law, it would take effect in 60 days.