The People proved the operability, within the meaning of the statute, of defendant’s gravity knife. The officer described how he opened the knife, and demonstrated its operability in court. The fact that the officer needed to make several attempts before the knife opened did not undermine a finding of operability. People v. Cabrera (AD1 2016).
Gravity knives are extremely dangerous and therefore illegal because they can be opened with one hand by holding the open end down and pressing a spring. People can spend years in prison, just for having one.
Of course you don’t have to do anything at all to get a dinner knife open, but somehow the Legislature seems not to have noticed.
Their dangerousness is also questionable. A recent study by the NYC Department of Health has shown that the average New Yorker loses 3.2 pints of blood annually from can openers (putting their fingers on the edge of the lid to get it out), but only .08 ml. from gravity knives.
One of our colleagues, a mild-mannered public defender by day, and the funky rapper C-95 by night, sez it’s who has the gravity knife that makes the all difference:
Sound: boom-be-doom-boom-be-doom-boom etc.
A knife that opens by gravity Or application of centrifugal force Even absent a bent toward depravity Could land you in jail. Of course – –
They sell those knives at Home Depot. They sell lots of them at Lowes. They’re in camping goods and hardware stores As everybody knows.
They’re used to cut open boxes. Sportsmen wear them on their belts. (Not the ones who ride after foxes, But the ones who fish for smelts.)
So the courts are crowded with laborers and fishers? Owners of chain stores and shops? No, it’s just the unfortunate pishers Who always get stopped by the cops.
It’s like drinking in public or feet on the seat; It’s about who’s doing it where. When cops get to decide who goes for the ride, Enforcement is always unfair.
Uncork a prosecco in Prospect Park, And enjoy it while dusk turns to dark. But without or with lime, In day or night time A Corona in Bushwick’s a crime.