Stun Gun Laws in Illinois

Learn about stun gun laws as well as possession requirements in Illinois.

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A stun gun (popularly also known as a Taser, the main maker of stun guns) is any device, powered by electricity, which fires one or more barbs attached to wires and which, upon hitting a person, disrupts the nervous system and impairs normal functioning. This includes any electrical device that, upon contact, can send out current capable of disrupting a person’s nervous system to render him incapable of normal functioning.

(Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. § 5/24-1.)

This article describes Illinois state law regarding how to legally carry 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 States Requiring a Stun Gun Permit.

How to Legally Carry a Stun Gun in Illinois

In Illinois, you must first apply for a Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card before you purchase, posses, or use a stun gun. (Certain exceptions may apply if you are a law enforcement officer, a member of the armed forces, or a nonresident travelling through the state with a stun gun in a locked container.) And even with a FOID card, you may possess a stun gun only for self-defense purposes.

For more information on obtaining your FOID card, see Illinois Gun Laws.

(Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. §§ 65/2, 5/24-2.)

Situations or Circumstances Where Carrying a Stun Gun is Illegal

It is illegal to carry a stun gun without a FOID card, and for purposes other than self-defense.

Increased penalties apply if you carry a stun gun in the following places (even with a FOID card):

  • on or within 1,000 feet of school grounds or on a school bus (or other school-owned vehicle)
  • in public housing developments, or
  • in public buildings (such as courthouses and government buildings).

(Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. § 5/24-1.)

Penalties for Stun Gun Carry Violations

Unlawfully carrying a stun gun is a class A misdemeanor. Penalties include a fine of up to $2,500, up to one year in jail, or both. A subsequent violation is a Class 3 felony, punishable by a fine up to $25,000, at least two (and up to five) years in prison, or both.

(Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. §§ 5/24-1, 5/5-4.5-55, 5/5-4.5-50.)

Carrying a stun gun in a school, public housing, or other public building is a Class 4 felony. Penalties include a fine of up to $25,000, at least one (and up to three) years in prison, or both.

(Ill. Comp. Stat. Ann. §§ 5/24-1, 5/5-4.5-55, 5/5-4.5-45.)

Getting Legal Help

If you have any questions about whether you are allowed to purchase, carry, or use a stun gun in Illinois, or if you are facing charges for a stun gun violation, consult a qualified criminal defense lawyer.

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