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Tactical Pens - Illegal to Carry?


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prolixia

A number of companies make 'tactical pens'.  These are pens that have a substantial metal body that could be used as a robust striking implement (a "kubaton").  Here are some examples:

tacpens-1024x768.jpg

(Ignore the Mont Blanc - nice but not very 'tactical')

 

Clearly there is nothing wrong with carrying a metal pen, and in the majority the 'tactical' pens differ from a standard pen only in the fact that they have chunky macho styling, deeper knurls for the fingers to grip, and are black.  That being said, most are marketed (explicitly or implicitly) as being 'self defence pens' and as pens for law enforcement to use (e.g. when writing tickets) so that a self defence tool is always to hand.  So even regardless of the intent of the carrier they are arguably offensive weapons on the basis that they are made or adapted for causing injury.

 

This is an expensive metal (silver) pen that is not marketed as a tactical pen:
yard_o_led_ballpoint_pen_esprit_blue.jpg

 

If I found that in someone's pocket I certainly wouldn't be thinking "offensive weapon".  But I'm not sure that there is really a huge amount of difference between this and the pens in the image above, aside from the material, colour, and the absence of any implication that it might be handy to have with you in a fight.  In fact, I'd say that most 'tactical' pens are more "marketed" for causing injury than made or adapted for that purpose in so much as they're really just macho-looking pens.

 

Personally, I would be very reluctant to arrest for possession of all but extreme examples of tactical pen even in circumstances where my threshold for offensive weapons might be quite low.  Assuming that you don't have admission along the lines of "I just carry this kubaton for hitting people with - I don't know why it has a nib on the end", how would you react to finding one in someone's pocket?

Edited by prolixia
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In fairness, discussions tend to evolve as they continue; particularly when somebody re-opens the discussion with an agenda in mind.

You're working on the presumption that members of the public need weapons for self-defence. As it stands, 'average joe' carrying a weapon for self defence is a criminal. What point are you tryi

I think fully trained is somewhat of an exaggeration. Most officers would freely admit they are sort of a bit trained in unarmed defence. 

I would see it as no offences, unless there was a clear intent on behalf of the posessor to use it as an offensive weapon.

Just because it may be marketed for under the banner of self defence doesn't mean the person who bought it intends to use it that way.

I suppose it's like those chunky torches security guards sometimes carry which can also be marketted as a self defence tool.

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Shmook

I actually carry one in my day job!

Not for 'tacticalness', obviously, but because I work in construction and need a pen easy to grip while wearing gloves/greasy hands and won't snap like plastic pens do when I'm climbing across building sites.

To get to my point though, I doubt I would be locking up if I found someone with one, unless it was covered in fresh gore. I've never heard of one being used over here as a striking weapon, and it would be too easy to argue they have it for reasons I listed or other justifiable ones to get a conviction out of it :)

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I'd see it as a little suspicious and ask intention and purpose of carrying, unless you have like a load of books, bags and paper ect.

It is a strange to just carry a very big, bulky solid sharp metal pen around. Normal people who carry eons carry ball point pens or something, "self defence" is not a defence to carry one, will only land you in trouble :P

Edited by Eebs
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I think if it's not a pen, and just a pen shaped defensive tool, then it's clearly an offensive weapon as it's designed with that purpose. Same as a straight up kubaton.

 

If it functioned as a pen too it'd be more confusing, but if it's sold with being a defensive tool as one of it's primary properties we could still be looking at a made offensive weapon. If not, intended. Same as those big torches that are basically batons.

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Sceptre

I suppose it's like those chunky torches security guards sometimes carry which can also be marketted as a self defence tool.

 

That's exactly what I was going to say, there's no other reason for carrying a 6D maglite around these days. Personally unless there was some evidence of intent then I'd not do anything about someone who simply had silly pen taste.

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That's exactly what I was going to say, there's no other reason for carrying a 6D maglite around these days. Personally unless there was some evidence of intent then I'd not do anything about someone who simply had silly pen taste.

But nevertheless, a 6D Maglite is still not a made offensive weapon, and proving it as an intentional off weap would be hard unless you had a frank admission from the possessor.

 

I was talking about these; http://www.tmart.com/NF-B910-CREE-Q3-250LM-3-Mode-Baton-Flashlight-Black_p144480.html?cc=GBP&fixed_price=hk_intl&gclid=CjwKEAjw0q2pBRC3jrb24JjE8VgSJAAyIzAdx1xzw3Yho0PUUfcWRhZwGhv4IVh1vDqeeXp-Mc8IchoCJVjw_wcB

Edited by Klaus
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Sceptre

That looks like it would leave nice distinctive bruises on someone.

 

Exactly, without evidence of intent I doubt I'd do much about a torch either unless the person carrying it was clearly up to no good or going equipped to steal. I certainly wouldn't say those pens are made as weapons, whereas that baton torch certainly is. The instructions even tell you to wipe it with soft fabric after use, presumably before the blood dries and becomes hard to get off.

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prolixia

I was also thinking about large Maglites when I was writing the post.  However, I think the difference is that even though everyone 'knows' that the real advantage of a large D-cell Maglite is you can whack someone with it, it's not explicitly made/marketed as a self defence tool.  Perhaps the equivalent would be a Maglite with one of those 'nightstick' side handles attached - when those are sold they are usually explicitly described as being for converting your Maglite into a baton.

Here's a representative extract from a website selling tactical pens:

 

Self defence Pens (also called "Tactical Pens") are practical defence tools. What appears at first to be a simple pen is revealed to be a well thought out defensive weapon capable of stopping attackers and, in the hands of the trained, an offensive tool capable of restraining and incapacitating. This is an excellent example of the pen being mightier than the sword in a literal sense.

 

The pens sold under that heading are a range from metal spikes disguised as pens (i.e. not even a pen at all) to completely mundane pens that happen to be made out of metal.

Just continuing the thread here - like I said, I couldn't imagine myself arresting when faced with a tactical pen (assuming it wasn't ridiculous).

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SimonT

I arrested someone the other day for off wep for having a mag light. They were using it as a weapon.

I also have a tactical pen with a window break on the end. It's just a pen made of very strong metal. It's designed to be a pen and can be better for self defenc. I wouldn't arrest anyone with one, unless they were going after someon with it. And if they were it wouldn't matter what pen it was

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Aren't made offensive weapons set-out? Ie, if its not on the list its not a 'made' off wep?

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sparkydale

In a similar vein, you can also get "knuckle-duster" clutch handbags e.g. http://www.harrods.com/accessories/handbags/clutch-bags?viewall=yes

 

 

(Cheaper versions are available on the auction sites unsurprisingly)

 

Not marketed as tactical/self defence but clearly an offensive weapon.  But would you necessarily notice a female carrying a small clutch bag with large ornate rings?  

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Sceptre

Aren't made offensive weapons set-out? Ie, if its not on the list its not a 'made' off wep?

 

No, perhaps you're thinking of prohibited weapons which cannot be sold or imported? Link

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SimonT

The thing about tactual pens is that i dont actually see anyone carrying one to attack someone. Its hardly the weapon of choice of the drugs enforcer etc

 

it might be the defence weapon of the person walking home late at night, along with the car keys, hair spray etc. I dont really have an issue with that, even if it is carried and intended for self defence. If you attack someone on the street im ok with you getting a face full of keys. 

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