Smaller concealed fixed blade in Maryland?

Discussion in 'Knife Laws' started by MTHall720, Feb 18, 2019.

  1. MTHall720

    MTHall720 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Every time I read Maryland knife laws I still feel unclear about some things.
    I'd like to carry a blade like the Bradford Guardian 4 with a IWB sheath. This is due to the fact that every time I carry a Buck 110 or a small fixed blade openly I get sheeple making comments.

    Is this possible to do in Maryland?

    I will only carry in Frederick County Maryland if I do.
  2. glistam


    Dec 27, 2004
    Short answer: Risky and potentially illegal.

    I'm also from Maryland and have done a ton of research on this, some of which involved talking to cops and prosecutors, as well as lots of case law.

    Maryland's sole knife carry law, CR 4-101, makes it illegal to carry a dangerous weapon concealed. What is a dangerous weapon? It's actually a bit vague but it includes "dirk knife" and "bowie knife." The big problem is these terms are never defined. Per several police officers and one State's Attorney, as well as case law I found where the knife was described, these two terms have the potential (but not the 100% certainty) of being applied to any fixed blade knife carried conceal. All folding knives, on the other hand, are specifically exempted from this law (because they are "penknives" per case law) and are thus assured of being legal.

    Case law I read showed me a few important things to consider. First, when you carry a weapon of any kind concealed, you have to actually be suspected of breaking the law for the police to find it. Breaking the law includes traffic offenses, just so we're clear. I have yet to find a case where the defendant wasn't doing something overtly stupid or intentionally divulged they were carrying a knife. When found, and no other serious crime is suspected, it is common for the officer to issue a citation and let the courts figure out of the knife is actually illegal. In the cases where the knife was truly incidental to something like a traffic offense, the charges were dropped or some kind of agreement was reached in exchange for the charges being dropped (aka nolle prosequi). Cases with more serious crimes made the knife charge small potatoes by comparison.
    MTHall720 likes this.
  3. MTHall720

    MTHall720 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 21, 2010
    Thanks very much for your answer. I am glad you explained this so well. After doing lots of reading on this subject in the past I couldn't truly understand with any clarity what the answer was. It wouldn't be worth it to me to take any chances. I will simply stick with folders and belt carry of really small fixed blades occasion. Once in a great while I will hear of someone walking downtown and trying to test the limits on open belt carry of something wildly bug like a 10 inch Bowie knife but am pretty sure that a LEO will ask them not to do it. I am the kind of guy who doesn't want to draw any attention to myself at all.

    Thanks again brother.
  4. MTHall720

    MTHall720 Gold Member Gold Member

    Sep 21, 2010

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