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Prohibiting possession of martial arts weapons is permitted under the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act

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January 21, 2009 at 4:37 pm


Law Lessons from McAteer v. Guzenski, App. Div. (A-1540-07T3; January 21, 2009):

N.J.S.A. 2C:25-29(b)(16) provides that in addition to entering an order prohibiting a defendant found to have committed an act of domestic violence from possessing any firearm, a “court may also issue an order prohibiting the defendant from possessing any other weapon enumerated in subsection r. of N.J.S.A. 2C:39-1.”

Although martial arts items (e.g., a sword, throwing spikes and stars, crossbow, staffs, spear, knives, and nunchucks) are not specifically identified as weapons in N.J.S.A. 2C:39-1, the definition of “weapon” contained in this section as, “anything readily capable of lethal use or of inflicting serious bodily injury,” includes martial arts equipment. Ibid. Thus, the entry of an order permanently prohibiting defendant from possessing martial arts weapons is the type of relief a court is expressly permitted to grant under the Prevention of Domestic Violence Act, N.J.S.A. 2C:25-17 to -35. However, as the language of the Act makes clear, such a prohibition is permissive, not mandatory. N.J.S.A. 2C:25-29(b)(16).






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