Strong Arm Robberies... [Archive] - Glock Talk

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Lampshade
09-09-2011, 20:42
Hello Mas, I was hoping you could shed a little light on a particular topic for me... strong arm robberies.

There was a recent incident by me where a couple was robbed by 4 unarmed men.

While the men demanded money, and the implied threat of violence was obvious, there was apparently no explicit threat. No weapons flashed, no verbal pronouncements of "Give me the loot or suffer XYZ consequences." Just instructions to "hand it over," or something similar.

At what point, generally speaking of course, would it become acceptable to use lethal force in such a scenario?

I know I would feel that my fear of serious bodily injury was reasonable, but I don't know how the courts are likely to view such a situation.

Thank you kindly,

-Lamp

Mas Ayoob
09-09-2011, 20:56
Lamp, two legal buzz phrases come to mind:

1. "What would a reasonable, prudent person have perceived and done, in the exact same circumstances, knowing what the defendant knew?"

2. "The situation must be considered 'within the totality of the circumstances.'"

In the most famous case of this type, four young men surrounded Bernhard Goetz on a New York City subway and one of them said, "Give me five dollars." He drew a Chief Special and gave them five bullets instead. A jury found him not guilty in the shooting of the four, though he was convicted of illegal concealed carry and spent roughly a year at Riker's Island, and remained a convicted felon. He was also hammered in a subsequent civil lawsuit.

Lacking details as to "the exact same circumstances," it's close to an unanswerable question...but I think a jury of Glock Talk peers would perceive danger of death or great bodily harm. The question is whether a jury selected from the local jury pool would perceive the same.

Best,
Mas