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Weapons on Campus

Policy Information

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Effective Date: 
November 4, 1996
Last Revised Date: 
September, 2009
Policy Number: 
Responsible Unit: 
UA Police Department

Purpose and Summary

Arizona Board of Regents Policies 5-302 and 5-303 prohibit the use, possession, display, or storage of any weapons, explosive device, or fireworks on the University of Arizona campus and on all land and in all buildings owned or under the control of the University of Arizona on behalf of the Arizona Board of Regents, except as provided in ARS §12-781. No concealed carry permit exempts a person from this policy.

If any person requests an exemption from this policy, the Chief of Police of the University of Arizona Police Department has been empowered to review and grant any such requests.


This policy is enforceable against all University of Arizona employees, students, and visitors on the University of Arizona campus and on all land and in all buildings owned or under the control of the University of Arizona.

Exceptions to this policy include

  • Peace officers certified by the State of Arizona and currently employed by an Arizona law enforcement agency performing official duties.

  • Peace officers certified by the State of Arizona in an off-duty capacity and currently employed by an Arizona law enforcement agency.

  • Any law enforcement officer working under their color of authority.

  • Weapons used in authorized academic programs for which prior approval has been obtained from the Dean or Department Head, Provost, and Chief of Police or their authorized representatives.

  • Any other activity that has been given prior written approval by the Chief of Police and authorized University representative.


For the purpose of this policy the following definitions will apply.

“Explosive”: Any dynamite, nitroglycerin, black powder, or other similar explosive material, including plastic explosives; or any breakable container that contains a flammable liquid with a flash point of 150 degrees F or less and that has a wick or similar device capable of being ignited.

“Fireworks”: Any fireworks, firecrackers, sparklers, rockets, or any propellant-activated device whose intended purpose is primarily for illumination.

“Weapon”: Any object or substance designed to inflict a wound, cause injury, or incapacitate, including without limitation all firearms, BB guns, air guns, pellet guns, switchblade knives, knives with blades five inches long and longer, and chemicals such as mace, tear gas, or oleoresin capsicum (i.e., pepper spray), but excluding normally available over-the-counter self-defense repellents. Chemical repellents labeled “for police use only” or “for law enforcement use only” may not be possessed by the general public.



The chief administrative officer, or an officer or employee designated by the chief administrative officer to maintain order, may order a person to leave the property of an educational institution if the officer or employee believes that the person is committing any act or has entered the property with the purpose of committing any act that disrupts the lawful use of the property by others at the educational institution.

Violations of ABOR Policies 5-302 and 5-303 of the Code of Conduct are enforceable against all University of Arizona employees, students, and visitors. Any use, possession, display, or storage of a weapon, explosive device, or fireworks on the property of the institution after a reasonable request to remove the weapon, explosive device, or fireworks interferes with and disrupts the lawful use of the institution’s property by others. Persons in violation of any lawful order to remove the weapon or to leave the property are subject to arrest by a peace officer for interference with or disruption of an educational institution, ARS 13-2911(A)(3).

Unless specifically authorized by law, a person may also be in violation of “misconduct involving weapons” by knowingly entering a public establishment or attending a public event carrying a deadly weapon on their person after a reasonable request by the operator of the establishment or sponsor of the event or agent to remove the weapon from the area, per ARS 13-3102 (A)(10). A properly worded sign will serve as a “reasonable request.”


Violations of this policy by University students, faculty and staff will be considered misconduct, subject to disciplinary action in accordance with ABOR policy. Violation of this policy by members of the public may result in ejection from the property and/or confiscation of the weapon, dangerous instrument used, displayed or possessed. Violations may also result in arrest for applicable state statutes.
Confiscated weapon(s) or instrument(s) may be sold, destroyed or otherwise disposed of in accordance with Arizona Revised Statutes. All seizures of prohibited items will be carried out within current policies regarding the processing of evidence.

Request for Exceptions

Any request to use, possess, display, or store a weapon on University property in connection with official University business must first be reviewed by the responsible Dean or Department Head. The Dean or Department Head may comment and shall forward the request to the Provost for review and comment. The request must then be forwarded to the Chief of Police of the University of Arizona Police Department in writing at least ten (10) days prior to the intended date of such use, possession, display, or storage. The written request must

  • Identify the purpose of the request.

  • Identify how this request furthers the mission of the University.

  • Identify the weapon.

  • Identify the duration of the request.

  • Identify a responsible person.

  • Identity how the weapon will be secured.

  • Identify how the weapon will or may be used.

The request will be evaluated by the Chief of Police, or their designated representative, and a written decision rendered within ten (10) working days. If the request is approved, the approval will include any conditions or restrictions necessary to require safety and consistency with the intent of the Arizona Board of Regents policy. If approval is given for an indefinite period of time it must be reviewed annually and renewed by the requestor. The University of Arizona Police Department will keep all approved requests on file and available for confirmation by police officers.

Revision History*

10/04/2023: Updated to reflect gender neutral pronouns

Updated September 30, 2009 to reflect ARS 12-781

* Please note that sections titled Frequently Asked Questions, Sources, Related Information, and Revision History are provided solely for the convenience of users and are not part of the official University policy.

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