A stun gun (popularly also known as a Taser, the main maker of stun guns) is a hand-held device, designed and manufactured for self-defense, that emits an electrical spark intended to momentarily disable a person.
(Tenn. Comp. R. & Regs. 0780-5-2-.02.)
This article describes Tennessee state law regarding who may not have a stun gun, and the circumstances or situations when carrying a stun gun is illegal in the state.
To learn more about how stun guns work, and how permitting laws vary by state, see State Gun Laws and Permit Requirements.
In Tennessee, most people may purchase, possess (openly or concealed), or use a nonlethal stun gun for self-defense without obtaining a permit.
It is illegal to carry a stun gun if it is intended to be used as a deadly weapon during the commission of a crime. Deadly weapons include any weapon or instrument designed, adapted, or intended to produce death or serious physical injury. Peace officers engaged in the performance of their duties are exempt from this rule.
(Tenn. Code Ann. § § 39-17-1307, 39-11-106, 39-17-1308.)
A number of cities and counties in Tennessee have enacted additional laws on the possession of stun guns, so be sure to check with your local municipality for stun gun regulations in your area.
It is a Class E felony to carry a stun gun if it is intended to be used as a deadly weapon during the commission of a crime. Penalties include a fine of up to $3,000, one year (and up to six years) in prison, or both.
(Tenn. Code Ann. § § 39-17-1307, 39-11-106, 40-35-111.)
If you have any questions about whether you are allowed to purchase, carry, or use a gun in Tennessee, or if you are facing charges for a stun gun violation, consult a qualified criminal defense lawyer.