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Legal definitions of weapons in Colorado

In Colorado, there are a number of common weapons offenses that someone may be charged with. The definitions of these weapons are set in C.R.S. ยง 18-12-101.

Depending on the weapons crime you are charged with, you could face sentences for a class 2 misdemeanor to a class 2 felony.

Here are the definitions of many types of weapons in Colorado:

-- Illegal weapon: This means a weapon like a gas gun, blackjack metallic knuckles, switchblade or gravity knife.

-- Dangerous weapon: This refers to many different weapons, such as a machine gun, firearm silencer, short shotgun, short rifle or ballistic knife.

-- Handgun: This means any firearm, such as a revolver, that can discharge a bullet and is not more than 12 inches long.

-- Bomb: A bomb means any device that is incendiary or explosive, or can cause an explosion, like a Molotov cocktail.

Many of the weapons offenses will be charged based on whether the defendant has a previous conviction for a weapons crime. Using a weapon in the commission of another crime can increase the penalties when it is charged as an aggravated offense.

If you are charged with a weapons crime, it is important that you understand the specifics about your case. For instance, how is the weapon being characterized in your charges? Do you have a previous conviction for a weapons offense? Can your case be charged federally? These are just a few of the questions you should know the answers to. If you have questions, an experienced attorney can provide more information.

Source:, "6.14 Offenses Related to Weapons," accessed April 12, 2017

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