When it comes to arms in the Hawaii State Constitution it is letter-perfect to the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution. So far that it is somewhat unclear in the State Constitution of Hawaii if there are individual rights. The Second Amendment to the Federal Constitution assures individual rights as to the Hawaiian citizens.

The Hawaii statutes in regards to knives and weapons are located in Title 10, Chapter 134 with the Caption: Ammunition, Firearms and Dangerous Weapons.


The law in Hawaii has established 2 categories of banned knives. These 2 knives include the “butterfly” and the “switchblade knives that are prohibited from being transported, possessed, transferred, sold or manufactured in this State. These types of knives have been defined in the following way:

A. Whichever person knowingly transports, manufacturers, transfers or sells any switchblade-type knife in this state, which features any knife that has a blade that opens automatically:

•By pressure that is applied with the hand to either a button or a device on the handle of these knives

•Or by gravity or an operation-of-inertia or both, will be found guilty of misdemeanors

B.Whichever person knowingly transports, manufactures, possesses transfers or sells in this State any type of butterfly knife that has the blade inside a handle that is split which unfolds manually with a wrist or hand action with the help of gravity, assistance-of-inertia will be found guilty of misdemeanors.
The prohibition statute on switchblades is not inclusive of the “bias toward closure” language that involves differentiating between true switchblades or automatic knives from the “assisted opening” type knives. In addition, knives that are classified as “assisted opening” may also be recognized as illegal in the state of Hawaii.

Transfer Or Sale

The butterfly or switchblades are prohibited from transfer or sale as mentioned before.

Carrying Or Concealment

Any individual that has not received authorization from the law that carries in a vehicle or on their self that occupied and used by this individual and is found to be carrying a pistol, dirk, dagger, metal knuckles, slug shot, Billy, blackjack or any other type of dangerous weapon that has been classified as deadly is recognized as guilty in regards to a misdemeanor and can be arrested immediately without the need for a warrant by a police officer, sheriff or other type of officer or individual. Any of these weapons upon the person’s conviction of the individual possessing or carrying will be destroyed by a sheriff or a chief-of-police.

When reading the 134-51 may lead a person to conclude incorrectly that this law is only applicable when the above-mentioned items are carried in a concealed manner or within a vehicle that the person is occupying at the time. These prohibitions are also applicable to a person who is caught armed with a dagger or dirk for example. These forbidden laws apply to open and concealed carry as stated in the Supreme Court of Hawaii.

Similar to knives the language of the other types of dangerous or deadly weapons also applies to any instrument that is similar in fashion to a dagger or dirk or to any weapon with a sharp edge. These laws do not apply to the non-weapon knives such as a scuba-diver knife or pocketknife.


The Hawaiian law has a zero-tolerance policy in place for any type of weapon on a school ground.

Carry License

A carry license is not applicable for arms only the firearms licenses are necessary for revolvers or pistols.

This information that is presented as a brief description of the laws and not as any kind of legal advice. aStraightArrow will not and cannot be a legal service provider. The use of the site does not create any sort of client/lawyer relationship. The knife laws are interpreted differently by prosecuting attorneys, enforcement officers, and judges. aStraightArrow suggests you consult legal counsel for further guidance.