What Happens if You’re Caught With a Knife in School?

By Carlos Gamino. Click here for audio version.

Carrying a knife is perfectly legal in Wisconsin – under most circumstances. It’s not legal to carry a knife in school (or any publicly owned building, for that matter). But what will happen to you if you’re caught with a knife in school? This guide explains.

What Happens if You’re Caught With a Knife in School?

Most people can legally carry knives with blades of any length in the state of Wisconsin. In fact, you can legally carry a kitchen knife, a machete, a switchblade or anything else, as long as you’re not prohibited from possessing a firearm and as long as you’re not in a school or another publicly owned building.

If you do have a knife in a school or other public building, Wisconsin law says you’re guilty of a Class A misdemeanor. Even if you’re a minor, the state may choose to charge you as an adult, which means you’re subject to the same jail time that any other adult would be.

Related: Are you financially responsible for your child’s crimes?

The Penalty for a Class A Misdemeanor for Carrying a Knife in School

If you’re convicted of a Class A misdemeanor for carrying a knife in school, you could end up going to jail for up to 9 months and paying fines of up to $10,000.

Misdemeanors, like all other criminal offenses, go on your permanent criminal record. They’ll stay there unless you’re eligible to clear your record later – and that’s not as common (or as easy) as you may think. That means future employers, landlords and other people who do background checks on you will likely see that you have a criminal history.

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What to Do if You’re Caught With a Knife at School

If you’re caught with a knife at school, your best bet may be to contact a Wisconsin criminal defense lawyer. Call us at 414-383-6700 to set up your free consultation. We’ll be happy to answer your questions and give you the legal advice you need.

Attorney Carlos Gamino