The following is a video transcript.
Non-lethal or Less Lethal weapons and self-defense
Instead of carrying a firearm, there are many people who frequently carry other types of self-defense items. Carrying these types of weapons is common among those who might be uncomfortable carrying a firearm but understand the need to protect themselves. These types of weapons are known as “non-lethal” or “less lethal weapons”. The three types of weapons we will discuss today are stun guns and tasers, batons and nightsticks, and chemical sprays.
These are all types of non-lethal weapons that are acceptable to carry in Georgia without a weapons carry license. Let’s discuss these weapons, as well as some common misconceptions about less lethal or non-lethal weapons.
Do you NEED to have a weapons carry license to possess non-lethal or less lethal weapons?
It’s important that the stage is set with undoubtedly one of the most common misconceptions about self-defense tools: that a weapons carry license is a requirement to possess non-lethal weapons. The Georgia Code defines a weapon as a knife or handgun:
A handgun is a firearm, loaded or unloaded, from which any shot, bullet, or other missile can be discharged by the action of an explosive where the length of the barrel, not including any revolving, detachable, or magazine breech, does not exceed 12 inches; provided, however, that the term “handgun” shall not include a gun which discharges a single shot of 0.46 centimeter or less in diameter.
A knife is a cutting instrument designed for the purpose of offense and defense consisting of a blade that is greater than 12 inches in length which is fastened to a handle.
The Official Code of Georgia states that a weapons carry license shall authorize any person in possession of a license to carry any weapon in any county of the state. Together this determines that unless the weapon fits the definition of a knife or handgun, as those found in the law, no weapons carry license is required to carry them. A knife with a five inch blade, tasers, batons, and pepper spray, require no carry license.