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Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

July 14 2017 at 6:41 PM
sbd  (Login silentbd)

I have read steady information that says UK citizens can carry and even use handcuffs as long as the situation is suited. However rigid handcuffs are designed not only as a temporary restraint apparatus, they are also for controlling a subject using pain and thus are classified as an offensive weapon. I have seen one high level viewpoint saying technically rigid cuffs would be acceptable too but the grey area is the fact they are designed to gain compliance of a combative subject as well as just restrain.

My question is, what about hinged handcuffs? Would those be technically ok? Do you know if hinged handcuffs are as purpose-driven about control as rigid are? I know it would be easier to accidentally cause injury during a citizens arrest, applying handcuffs in a legally sound situation as opposed to applying chain-link handcuffs to someone, but I mean as far as their purpose and legalities, where do you think (or know if you have direct knowledge of this) the UK law stands on citizens carrying hinged handcuffs given what I have said?

I am not set on carrying handcuffs but I might like to throw a pair in my backpack which is a sort of extended EDC/bugout bag. I have a pair of lightweight TCH hinged but I am wondering if I should invest in the lightweight chain-linked TCH version on the off-chance that one day I would like to throw them in the backpack for an emergency situation. We have been having terrorist attacks over the last few weeks or months and it really got me thinking about MAYBE having a pair as a resource just in case the situation is dire enough and could provide beneficial aid to a situation, whether directly or being able to hand them to an officer who has already used their pair(s) and has nothing left with which to restrain anyone else with.

What are your thoughts on the legalities of hinged and my sideline of wondering about maybe putting a pair in my backpack? I am primarily wondering about the hinged thing though.

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(Login k20-on-tec)

Re: Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

July 14 2017, 7:05 PM 

As far as i was aware a citizens arrest is basicly verbal as anyform of restraint can be classed as assault. Thats the problem with this country alot of our laws are grey same as guns thats even worse. Anyway I personally would not bother as its more hassle than its worth i just read in the news today about a guy who restrained a armed robber on the floor has been nicked for gbh and that was not using cuffs knowing our country you would probs end up with a kidnap or holding without consent type of charge then abh for the marks left on the wrists. I also know that if you was to carry any that the police use they will get funny about it. Some guys did a prank with some and he ended up arrested because they thought they was their cuffs. Folding or chain would be the best bet of you was to carry any as they would not associate this with being police equipment in anyway and would not of thought they would see them as a weapon. I would of thought you would have to provide a reasonable excuse for having them in public as you do if you are carrying a weapon to the range for example and i guess at the end of the day it comes down to the decision of who ever has stopped you.

(Login silentbd)

Re: Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

July 15 2017, 3:55 PM 

I always recommend people not carry cuffs any way. However if we (UK) get repeatedly attacked much more I may say screw it and keep a pair on my person and justify it at the time if there were ever questions after a search for some reason. But really I am not all that interested in going out and buying cuffs to carry, just not worth the effort right now. But I think I would go with chain-linked though if I did.

(no login)

Civilians and handcuffs

July 22 2017, 10:27 AM 

There is nothing stopping you carrying handcuffs in the UK. They do not fall under a definition of an offensive weapon.

However if you were to use them on a person without consent it would likely be an assault. The power of citizen arrest is very specific to indictable offences and you would need to be able to justify any level of force used and handcuffs would be considered force.

If the cuffs caused injury you could be subject to legal action. You may be asked if you hold certifications in the use of the specific cuffs or are insured for any liability using them.

In short I would leave arrests and handcuffs to the police except in very exceptional circumstances and you are willing to accept the risk of allegations being made against you or the possibilty of you being injured.

(Login silentbd)

Re: Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

July 22 2017, 11:24 AM 

Perhaps just carrying a couple of handcops would be a good middle of the road.

[linked image]

Essentially it's the outer sheath of paracord with an extremely strong Technora cord on the interior. Light weight and should be enough I reckon. As opposed to carrying metallic handcuffs around, not like I was set on the idea just exploring. I made my own couple of handcops, one made with just technora cord by it's self and another which had a 400lb breaking strain core of technora inside a paracord sheath. That should be fine and they fit nicely into the MOLLE webbing of my pocket organiser where I carry EDC items.

Probably way less chance of causing injury too with them being soft in all areas.

(no login)

Been there, done that...

October 8 2017, 12:03 AM 

I'm a licensed private security officer in the UK, working events and bouncing.
I'm certified to use cuffs and have been through the process.

There's two schools of thought depending on the local police:
1. All handcuffs are restraints, nothing less, nothing more. (Rigid are OK)
2. Rigid handcuffs are made with restraint techniques in mind so become "offensive weapons" (rigid not OK, Chain/Hinged OK).

Neither legal opinion has been through court yet. NPCC (chief of police council) do say that handcuffs are perfectly fine for non-cops to use.

The tricky bit.....
Putting cuffs on someone is assault, so you have to have the power to (through self-defence, lawful ejection, arrest etc) even then it must conform to being reasonable, necessary and proportionate.

OK, so even then, the police are happy. The person may then decide to sue you for any injuries (and there is lawyers who specialise in it). If you're not trained or insured for it then you'll be out on your own.

Unless it's your job, I would just stick to zip-ties and doing what you need to do in the circumstances.

To be honest, I rarely carry cuffs apart from when I'm out on a festival in the middle of nowhere and likely to be waiting a while for the police or reinforcements, that's the only time I see them being useful.

doctors in now.
(no login)

Re: Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

October 8 2017, 1:40 AM 

assuming you were just thinking out loud, what was the point of the post?
go to america where you can just shoot them dead and not worry about cuffs.

(no login)

Handcuffs with you

October 8 2017, 1:41 AM 


I always carry handcuffs with me i'm not a police officer or else
I ' ve used them many times and no one say a thing of it they are a little sorprissed
That i carry cuffs but thats all

Best patrick

(no login)

Re: Civilians in UK carrying handcuffs, chain vs hinged vs rigid legalities?

October 9 2017, 8:28 AM 

I'm not really sure what the idea here is, or if you have any business carrying handcuffs as a civilian. It's not illegal over here either. But what's the point?

I once had an emt friend who for some time carried a blood pressure cuff and a stethoscope around in his civilian jacket. Wouldn't you consider that a little odd, too?

Rather learn Jiu-Jiutsu, the art of self defense. happy.gif

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