Delvin Bill Allowing Police Officers to Carry Knives Passes State House

OLYMPIA...Senate Bill 5202, a bill allowing police officers to carry spring-blade knives in the line of duty, has passed the House of Representatives. Sen. Jerome Delvin, R- Richland, sponsored the bill in response to a request by Kennewick Police Chief Ken Hohenberg. "Under Washington law, it's a gross misdemeanor to carry a spring-blade or switchblade knife," said Delvin, a former Richland police officer and ranking Republican on the Senate Higher Education Committee. "This switchblade law is a good one, but it had an unintended consequence: police officers often need to use knives in the line of duty, for example, to cut a seat belt off of an injured person in an automobile accident. This bill makes an exception for police officers in the line of duty." Senate Bill 5202 is expected to be signed by the governor and becomes active law 90 days after the end of the legislative session, which is scheduled for April 22.  "I am so grateful for Senator Delvin's work on this bill," Hohenberg said. "Bomb squad and SWAT team officers often use knives to pry something open quickly. This bill gives our police officers a tactical tool to keep themselves safe and keep our citizens safe." Sen. Delvin represents the 8th Legislative District, which includes Richland, Kennewick, Benton City and Prosser.  For more information contact Pat Albright (360) 786-7519 or  For the latest news and nformation from the Senate Republican Caucus visit the Senate Republican Media Center at

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