I am asking for commenters who can point to similar cases in the U.K., United States, or elsewhere. For example, a student finds a knife on a playground at school; she picks it up and takes it directly to a teacher. She is expelled for possession of a weapon on school property. Iâ€™m not looking only for cases involving weapons.
The case that immediately came to my mind was the case of US v. Baker in the 10th Circuit. Mr. Baker saw a loaded speed loader for a revolver laying on the ground, which had been previously stolen. He took this item into his possession for fear children would find it, intending to turn it over to police. But police stopped him, and found it before he could turn it over. He asked that the jury be allowed to get an instruction about innocent possession, which the panel denied. Looking a bit further, in a case with very similar facts,Â this would also appear to be law in the 4th Circuit as well. There wouldn’t appear to be an innocent possession exemption to the felon-in-possession statutes, but one wonders whether a felon-in-possession could claim a necessity defense under some circumstances.