Tennessee Code Annotated

Title 39: Criminal Offenses

Chapter 17: Offenses Against Public Health, Safety and Welfare

Part 13: Weapons

TCA 39-17-1307: Unlawful carrying or possession of a weapon.

(a) (1) A person commits an offense who carries with the intent to go armed a firearm, a knife with a blade length exceeding four inches (4''), or a club.

(2) (A) The first violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class C misdemeanor, and, in addition to possible imprisonment as provided by law, may be punished by a fine not to exceed five hundred dollars ($500).

(B) A second or subsequent violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class B misdemeanor.

(C) A violation of subdivision (a)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor if the person's carrying of a handgun occurred at a place open to the public where one (1) or more persons were present.

(b) (1) A person commits an offense who unlawfully possesses a firearm, as defined in SC 39-11-106, and:

(A) Has been convicted of a felony involving the use or attempted use of force, violence, or a deadly weapon; or

(B) Has been convicted of a felony drug offense.

(2) An offense under subdivision (b)(1)(A) is a Class C felony.

(3) An offense under subdivision (b)(1)(B) is a Class D felony.

(c) (1) A person commits an offense who possesses a handgun and has been convicted of a felony.

(2) An offense under subdivision (c)(1) is a Class E felony.

(d) (1) A person commits an offense who possesses a deadly weapon other than a firearm with the intent to employ it during the commission of, attempt to commit, or escape from a dangerous offense as defined in SC 39-17-1324.

(2) A person commits an offense who possesses any deadly weapon with the intent to employ it during the commission of, attempt to commit, or escape from any offense not defined as a dangerous offense by SC 39-17-1324.

(3) A violation of this subsection (d) is a Class E felony.

(e) (1) It is an exception to the application of subsection (a) that a person authorized to carry a handgun pursuant to SC 39-17-1351 is transporting a rifle or shotgun in or on a privately-owned motor vehicle and the rifle or shotgun does not have ammunition in the chamber. However, the person does not violate this section by inserting ammunition into the chamber if the ammunition is inserted for purposes of justifiable self-defense pursuant to SC 39-11-611 or SC 39-11-612.

(2) It is an exception to the application of subsection (a) that a person who is not authorized to possess a handgun pursuant to SC 39-17-1351 is transporting a rifle or shotgun in or on a privately-owned motor vehicle and the rifle or shotgun does not have ammunition in the chamber or cylinder, and no clip or magazine containing ammunition is inserted in the rifle or shotgun or is in close proximity to both the weapon and any person.

(f) (1) A person commits an offense who possesses a firearm, as defined in SC 39-11-106(a), and:

(A) Has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence as defined in 18 U.S.C. SC 921, and is still subject to the disabilities of such a conviction;

(B) Is, at the time of the possession, subject to an order of protection that fully complies with 18 U.S.C. SC 922(g)(8); or

(C) Is prohibited from possessing a firearm under any other provision of state or federal law.

(2) If the person is licensed as a federal firearms dealer or a responsible party under a federal firearms license, the determination of whether such an individual possesses firearms that constitute the business inventory under the federal license shall be determined based upon the applicable federal statutes or the rules, regulations and official letters, rulings and publications of the bureau of alcohol, tobacco, firearms and explosives.

(3) For purposes of this section, a person does not possess a firearm, including, but not limited to, firearms registered under the National Firearms Act, compiled in 26 U.S.C. SC 5801 et seq., if the firearm is in a safe or similar container that is securely locked and to which the respondent does not have the combination, keys or other means of normal access.

(4) A violation of subdivision (f)(1) is a Class A misdemeanor and each violation constitutes a separate offense.

(5) If a violation of subdivision (f)(1) also constitutes a violation of SC 36-3-625(h) or SC 39-13-113(h), the respondent may be charged and convicted under any or all such sections.

History: Acts 1989, ch. 591, SC 1; 1990, ch. 1029, SC 6; 2007, ch. 412, SC 1; 2007, ch. 594, SC 3; 2008, ch. 1166, SC 1; 2008, ch. 1176, SC 1; 2009, ch. 431, SC 1; 2009, ch. 455, SC 6; 2010, ch. 793, SC 1; 2012, ch. 726, SC 1.