Miscellaneous gun laws in Nevada:
NRS 202.265 - Guns at schools
NRS 202.255 - Spring guns
NRS 202.275 - Short-barreled shotguns or rifles


Three little-known Nevada firearm laws prohibit:

  1. possessing guns at schools or childcare facilities (NRS 202.265);
  2. setting a spring pistol or rifle (NRS 202.255); and
  3. possessing or manufacturing short-barreled shotguns or rifles (NRS 202.275)

NRS 202.265 makes bringing a gun to school a gross misdemeanor in Nevada. The penalty is:

  • up to 364 days in jail, and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines

Meanwhile, NRS 202.255 makes setting a spring gun either a gross misdemeanor or a felony in Nevada depending on if anyone sustains injuries.

Finally, NRS 202.275 makes possessing or manufacturing a short-barreled rifle or shotgun a category D felony in Nevada. The penalty is:

In any case, prosecutors may be willing to negotiate a Nevada plea bargain where the charges get greatly reduced or dismissed. If defendants lose their gun rights, the only way they can get them back is through a Nevada Governor's pardon.

In this article, our Las Vegas criminal defense attorneys discuss the legal definition and penalties of the Nevada crimes of bringing guns to school, setting spring guns, and possessing or making short-barreled long guns.

Click on a topic below to jump directly to that section.

notebook and gun
NRS 202.265 prohibits bringing guns to school property in Nevada.

1. NRS 202.265 - Bringing guns to school property in Nevada

NRS 202.265 is the Nevada law that makes it a crime to " carry or possess" firearms while either:

  • "on the property of the Nevada System of Higher Education, a private or public school or child care facility, or
  • in a vehicle of a private or public school or child care facility"

It makes no difference if the gun is a pistol, revolver, or rifle. (Note that NRS 202.265 also prohibits pneumatic guns and paint guns on school property and in vehicles as well.)

Violating NRS 202.265 is a gross misdemeanor in Nevada, carrying:

gun in backpack
It is a gross misdemeanor in Nevada to possess a firearm at a public or private school in Nevada.
  • up to 364 days in jail, and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines 

1.1. Exceptions

NRS 202.265 does provide some exceptions. The following people may possess guns at a school or child care facility in Nevada:

  • peace officers,
  • school security guards,
  • anyone with written permission from the president of a branch or facility of the NSHE,
  • anyone with written permission from the principal of the school, and
  • anyone with written permission from the person designated by a child care facility to give permission to carry or possess the gun

Note that it is also legal for a U.S. citizen who owns and operates a child care facility out of his/her home to possess a gun at home if he/she both:

  • lives in the home; and
  • complies with any other laws governing gun possession

Also note that NRS 202.265 applies to child care facilities only during their normal business hours.

2. NRS 202.255 - Setting a spring gun in Nevada

NRS 202.255 is the Nevada law that prohibits people from setting a spring pistol or rifle. The penalty depends on whether the spring gun caused an injury:

If nobody sustains an injury, violating NRS 202.255 is a gross misdemeanor. The penalty carries:

  • up to 364 days in jail, and/or
  • up to $2,000 in fines 

If someone sustains a non-fatal injury, violating NRS 202.255 is a category B felony in Nevada. The penalty carries:

  • one to six (1 - 6) years in prison, and/or
  • up to $5,000 in fines

If someone dies from the spring gun under circumstances not qualifying as murder, violating NRS 202.255 is a category B felony. The penalty carries:

  • one to ten (1 - 10) years in prison, and
  • up to $10,000 in fines (at the judge's discretion)

If someone dies from the spring gun under murderous circumstances, the defendant would face charges for the Nevada crime of murder (NRS 200.030). The penalty carries:

spring gun
Setting a spring gun can be a felony.
  • the death penalty in Nevada;
  • life in prison without the possibility of parole;
  • life in prison with the possibility of parole after 20 years; or
  • 50 years in prison with the possibility of parole after 20 years

2.1. Exceptions

NRS 202.255 does provide an exception: Agents or employees of governmental agencies engaged in cooperative predatory animal and rodent control work in Nevada may use loaded spring guns or set guns for the destruction of:

  • gophers,
  • moles,
  • coyotes, or
  • other burrowing rodents or predatory animals

The loaded spring gun or set gun must be set at least 15 miles outside of the boundaries of any incorporated city or unincorporated town. And before setting any loaded spring gun or set gun on real property, the agents or employees must first obtain permission from the property's owner, lessee, or administrator.

3. NRS 202.275 - Possessing, making, or disposing of short-barreled rifles or shotguns in Nevada

NRS 202.275 is the Nevada law which makes it a crime when a person "knowingly or willfully possesses, manufactures or disposes of any short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun."

short-barreled shotgun
Possessing a short-barreled rifle or shotgun is punished as a category D felony in Nevada.

Note that Nevada law defines a "short-barreled rifle” as either a:

  • rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length; or
  • weapon made from a rifle with an overall length of less than 26 inches

Meanwhile, a "short-barreled shotgun" is either a:

  • shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length; or
  • weapon made from a shotgun with an overall length of less than 26 inches.

Violating NRS 202.275 is a category D felony in Nevada. The penalty is:

  • one to four (1 - 4) years in prison, and
  • up to $5,000 in fines (at the judge's discretion)

3.1. Exceptions

NRS 202.275 does provide exceptions. The following people in Nevada may possess short-barreled rifles and shotguns:

  • peace officers when authorized to do so in the performance of official duties; or
  • any person who is licensed as a firearm importer, manufacturer, collector, or dealer by the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury;
  • any person whose short-barreled rifle or shotgun is registered with the U.S. Dept. of the Treasury; or
  • any person whose short-barreled rifle or shotgun that has been determined to be a collector's item pursuant to 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53 or a curio or relic pursuant to 18 U.S.C. Chapter 44
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Legal References

  1. NRS 202.265  Possession of dangerous weapon on property or in vehicle of school or child care facility; penalty; exceptions.

          1.  Except as otherwise provided in this section, a person shall not carry or possess while on the property of the Nevada System of Higher Education, a private or public school or child care facility, or while in a vehicle of a private or public school or child care facility:

          (a) An explosive or incendiary device;

          (b) A dirk, dagger or switchblade knife;

          (c) A nunchaku or trefoil;

          (d) A blackjack or billy club or metal knuckles;

          (e) A pneumatic gun;

          (f) A pistol, revolver or other firearm; or

          (g) Any device used to mark any part of a person with paint or any other substance.

          2.  Any person who violates subsection 1 is guilty of a gross misdemeanor.

          3.  This section does not prohibit the possession of a weapon listed in subsection 1 on the property of:

          (a) A private or public school or child care facility by a:

                 (1) Peace officer;

                 (2) School security guard; or

                 (3) Person having written permission from the president of a branch or facility of the Nevada System of Higher Education or the principal of the school or the person designated by a child care facility to give permission to carry or possess the weapon.

          (b) A child care facility which is located at or in the home of a natural person by the person who owns or operates the facility so long as the person resides in the home and the person complies with any laws governing the possession of such a weapon.

          4.  The provisions of this section apply to a child care facility located at or in the home of a natural person only during the normal hours of business of the facility.

          5.  For the purposes of this section:

          (a) “Child care facility” means any child care facility that is licensed pursuant to chapter 432A of NRS or licensed by a city or county.

          (b) “Nunchaku” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 202.350.

          (c) “Pneumatic gun” means any implement designed as a gun that may expel a ball bearing or a pellet by action of pneumatic pressure. The term includes, without limitation, a paintball gun that expels plastic balls filled with paint for the purpose of marking the point of impact.

          (d) “Switchblade knife” means a spring-blade knife, snap-blade knife or any other knife having the appearance of a pocketknife, any blade of which is 2 or more inches long and which can be released automatically by a flick of a button, pressure on the handle or other mechanical device, or is released by any type of mechanism. The term does not include a knife which has a blade that is held in place by a spring if the blade does not have any type of automatic release.

          (e) “Trefoil” has the meaning ascribed to it in NRS 202.350.

          (f) “Vehicle” has the meaning ascribed to “school bus” in NRS 484A.230.
  2. NRS 202.255  Setting spring gun or other deadly weapon: Unlawful and permitted uses; penalties.

          1.  A person who sets a so-called trap, spring pistol, rifle, or other deadly weapon shall be punished:

          (a) If no injury results therefrom to any human being, for a gross misdemeanor.

          (b) If injuries not fatal result therefrom to any human being, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 6 years, or by a fine of not more than $5,000, or by both fine and imprisonment.

          (c) If the death of a human being results therefrom:

                 (1) Under circumstances not rendering the act murder, for a category B felony by imprisonment in the state prison for a minimum term of not less than 1 year and a maximum term of not more than 10 years, and may be further punished by a fine of not more than $10,000; or

                 (2) Otherwise, for murder which is a category A felony as provided in NRS 200.030.

          2.  Subsection 1 does not prevent the use of any loaded spring gun, set gun or other device for the destruction of gophers, moles, coyotes or other burrowing rodents or predatory animals by agents or employees of governmental agencies engaged in cooperative predatory animal and rodent control work, but:

          (a) A loaded spring gun, set gun or other device must not be set within 15 miles of the boundaries of any incorporated city or unincorporated town; and

          (b) Before setting any such loaded spring gun, set gun or other device on any real property permission must first be obtained from the owner, lessee or administrator thereof.
  3.  NRS 202.275  Possession, manufacture or disposition of short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun: Penalty; exceptions.

          1.  Except as otherwise provided in subsection 3, a person who knowingly or willfully possesses, manufactures or disposes of any short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun is guilty of a category D felony and shall be punished as provided in NRS 193.130.

          2.  For purposes of this section:

          (a) “Short-barreled rifle” means:

                 (1) A rifle having one or more barrels less than 16 inches in length; or

                 (2) Any weapon made from a rifle, whether by alteration, modification or other means, with an overall length of less than 26 inches.

          (b) “Short-barreled shotgun” means:

                 (1) A shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length; or

                 (2) Any weapon made from a shotgun, whether by alteration, modification or other means, with an overall length of less than 26 inches.

          3.  This section does not prohibit:

          (a) The possession or use of any short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun by any peace officer when authorized to do so in the performance of official duties;

          (b) The possession of any short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun by a person who is licensed as a firearms importer, manufacturer, collector or dealer by the United States Department of the Treasury, or by a person to whom such a rifle or shotgun is registered with the United States Department of the Treasury; or

          (c) The possession of any short-barreled rifle or short-barreled shotgun that has been determined to be a collector's item pursuant to 26 U.S.C. Chapter 53 or a curio or relic pursuant to 18 U.S.C. Chapter 44

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