Jul 22, 2024  
2023-2024 Catalog 
    
2023-2024 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Weapons Policy



A. Purpose:

The purpose of this policy is to promote a safe learning and working environment for all college locations by minimizing the risk of violence by use of a weapon. This policy provides rules and procedures for the possession of weapons on campus grounds, in campus buildings, and at campus events. It is consistent with the Regulation of Weapons (Appendix A) adopted by the State Board for Community Colleges, Policy 3.14.6, Workplace Violence Prevention and Threat Assessment Policy Guidelines of the Virginia Community College System, and the laws and regulations of the Commonwealth of Virginia.

B. Application:

This policy applies to all faculty, staff, students, contractors, and visitors entering campus buildings or attending college-sponsored events.

C. Authority:

The State Board for Community College is authorized by Virginia Code §§ 23-215 and 23-217(g) to promulgate regulations for carrying out its responsibilities. State Board for Community Colleges Regulation 8VAC95-10-10 et seq. (Appendix A) sets out prohibitions for weapons possession on all college campuses within the VCCS. College boards may approve policies consistent with guidelines set by the State Board for Community Colleges.

D. Definitions:

  1. “Police officer” means law-enforcement officials appointed pursuant to Article 3 (§ 15.2-1609 et seq.) of Chapter 16 and Chapter 17 (§ 15.2-1700 et seq.) of Title 15.2, Chapter 17 (§ 23-232 et seq.) of Title 23, Chapter 2 (§ 29.1-200 et seq.) of Title 29.1, or Chapter 1 (§ 52-1 et seq.) of Title 52 of the Code of Virginia or sworn federal law-enforcement officers.
  2. “College property” means any property owned, leased, or controlled by a member college of the Virginia Community College System and the administrative office of the Virginia Community College System.
  3. “Weapon” means (i) any pistol, revolver, or other weapon designed or intended to propel a missile of any kind by action of an explosion of any combustible material; (ii) any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, metal knucks, or blackjack; (iii) any flailing instrument consisting of two or more rigid parts connected in such a manner as to allow them to swing freely, which may be known as a nun chahka, nun chuck, nunchaku, shuriken, or fighting chain; (iv) any disc, of whatever configuration, having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart; or (v) any weapon of like kind, to include but not limited to, tasers.

    “Weapon” does not mean knives or razors used for domestic purposes, pen or folding knives with blades less than three inches in length, or knives of like kind carried for use in accordance with the purpose intended by the original seller.

E. Policy:

  1. Possession or carrying of any weapon by any person, except a police officer, is prohibited on college property in academic buildings, administrative office buildings, student centers, child care centers, dining facilities and places of like kind where people congregate, or while attending any college-sponsored sporting, entertainment or educational events. Entry upon the aforementioned college property in violation of this prohibition is expressly forbidden.
  2. Faculty, staff, and students may not possess or carry any weapon anywhere on college property except as outlined in Section F of this policy.

F. Exceptions:

  1. Current sworn and certified local, state, and federal law enforcement officers with proper identification, may possess or carry a weapon on college property, inside all campus buildings, and at all campus events.
  2. Faculty, staff, and students may secure handguns, rifles, and shotguns in a compartment or container of parked vehicles. Faculty, staff, and students who wish to secure a handgun in their vehicle must possess a valid concealed handgun permit. The compartment or container may be a trunk or other storage area. At no time shall a weapon be visible in plain view while inside a vehicle.
  3. Visitors and contractors may secure handguns, rifles, and shotguns in parked vehicles. Visitors and contractors are encouraged to secure weapons in the trunk of vehicles or otherwise out of sight of passersby. If visitors and contractors store handguns in a parked vehicle, the handgun must be secured in a compartment or container inside the vehicle.
  4. The President or Vice President for Financial & Administrative Services may authorize in writing a person to possess, store, or use a weapon: (i) when used for educational or artistic instruction, display, parade, or ceremony sponsored or approved by the college (unloaded or disabled only and with other specified safeguards, if appropriate); or (ii) for any college-approved training, course, or class.

G. Procedures:

  1. If campus security guard or an administrator observes or receives a report of a violation of this policy, they will take appropriate action, which may include, directing the individual to leave the campus building or event immediately and/or contacting local police. When the individual is directed to leave the building or event, the individual may secure the weapon inside his or her vehicle and return. In the event the individual fails to comply the campus security guard or administrator will contact local police.
  2. In cases involving an immediate threat of violence, members of the campus community are encouraged to call 911immediately. The campus security guard or administrator will take appropriate action, to include contacting local police.
  3. Persons observed on the open grounds of campus (streets, sidewalks, and other open areas on college property) may be asked by the campus security guard, an administrator, or local police to identify his or her relationship with the college to confirm whether a violation of this policy has occurred, (i.e., determine whether the individual is a student, employee, or visitor). If the individual is a visitor who intends to enter a campus building or event where weapons are prohibited, the campus security guard, administrator, or local police shall advise that, pursuant to regulation (Appendix A), it is unlawful to enter such places while possessing or carrying a weapon. The individual shall be advised to secure the weapon inside his or her vehicle prior to entering the building or event.

H. Violation of Policy:

  1. Students who violate this policy will be subject to disciplinary action under the student conduct code up to and including, dismissal.
  2. Employees who violate this policy will be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination, using existing policies and procedures including Section 3 of the VCCS Policy Manual or DHRM Policy 1.60, Standards of Conduct.
  3. Pursuant to the Regulation of Weapons (Appendix A), visitors and contractors in violation of the prohibitions on the possession of weapons are subject to arrest and may be barred from the campus.

State Board For Community Colleges: Weapons Regulations

CHAPTER 10
REGULATION OF WEAPONS

8VAC95-10-10. Definitions.

The following words and terms when used in this chapter shall have the following meanings unless the context clearly indicates otherwise:

“Police officer” means law-enforcement officials appointed pursuant to Article 3 (§ 15.2-1609 et seq.) of Chapter 16 and Chapter 17 (§ 15.2-1700 et seq.) of Title 15.2, Chapter 17 (§ 23-232 et seq.) of Title 23, Chapter 2 (§ 29.1-200 et seq.) of Title 29.1, or Chapter 1 (§ 52-1 et seq.) of Title 52 of the Code of Virginia or sworn federal law-enforcement officers.

“College property” means any property owned, leased, or controlled by a member college of the Virginia Community College System and the administrative office of the Virginia Community College System.

“Weapon” means (i) any pistol, revolver, or other weapon designed or intended to propel a missile of any kind by action of an explosion of any combustible material; (ii) any dirk, bowie knife, switchblade knife, ballistic knife, machete, razor, slingshot, spring stick, metal knucks, or blackjack; (iii) any flailing instrument consisting of two or more rigid parts connected in such a manner as to allow them to swing freely, which may be known as a nun chahka, nun chuck, nunchaku, shuriken, or fighting chain; (iv) any disc, of whatever configuration, having at least two points or pointed blades which is designed to be thrown or propelled and which may be known as a throwing star or oriental dart; or (v) any weapon of like kind, to include but not limited to, tasers.

“Weapon” does not mean knives or razors used for domestic purposes, pen or folding knives with blades less than three inches in length, or knives of like kind carried for use in accordance with the purpose intended by the original seller.

8VAC95-10-20. Possession of weapons prohibited.

  1. Possession or carrying of any weapon by any person, except a police officer, is prohibited on college property in academic buildings, administrative office buildings, student centers, child care centers, dining facilities and places of like kind where people congregate, or while attending any sporting, entertainment, or educational events. Entry upon the aforementioned college property in violation of this prohibition is expressly forbidden.
  2. Any individual in violation of this prohibition will be asked to remove the weapon immediately. Failure to comply may result in a student conduct referral, an employee disciplinary action, or arrest.

8VAC95-10-30. Exceptions to prohibition.

  1. The prohibition in 8VAC95-10-20 shall not apply to current sworn and certified local, state, and federal law enforcement officers with proper identification, nor shall it apply to possession of a weapon when stored securely inside the vehicle of properly permitted students and employees.
  2. The chief of the college police department or head of security department, or his designee, may authorize in writing a person to possess, store, or use a weapon: (i) when used for educational or artistic instruction, display, parade, or ceremony sponsored or approved by the college (unloaded or disabled only and with other specified safeguards, if appropriate); or (ii) for any college-approved training, course, or class.

8VAC95-10-40. Person lawfully in charge.

Campus police officers or security, and other police officers acting pursuant to a mutual aid agreement or by concurrent jurisdiction, are lawfully in charge for the purposes of forbidding entry upon or remaining upon college property while possessing or carrying weapons in violation of this chapter.