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Old 08-27-2011, 00:44   #126
OldCurlyWolf
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Originally Posted by janice6 View Post
Some times it works that way.
And mostly it shouldn't when it does.
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Old 08-27-2011, 01:00   #127
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Originally Posted by David Armstrong View Post
No bigger than any of the assumptions others are making here.

We don't know much of anything iexcept he has dropped his weapon and is n ow slowly moving toward you while talking.

Not only are those not the only logical conclusions I can come to, I think they are some of those BIG assumptions you mentioned earlier.
Well David, we both agree that our judgement of the situation is on opposite ends of the spectrum. There could be a lot of different subtleties to a real situation that might change my assessment to not shoot, such as if there were indications that the guy was on drugs or insane, but that doesn't make it less dangerous necessarily. I don't leave home with my gun hoping I get to shoot someone. I said if I had the opportunity to retreat safely I would.

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So your advice is to plan on lying about the event to the court. Sorry, that doesn't strike me as a particualrly good plan.
I never said to lie about the event in court. What I meant to say is that my lawyer could present the evidence in a way that places reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors. Remember, it's all about who paints the best picture, right?

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No, everyone doesn't know the guy's intent. That is the point.
See, we just disagree on our assessments. I have been robbed before, I think I can figure out what the intent here is. You think the guy wants to give you a hug, I think he wants to kill me. I think your advice will get people killed unnecessarily. I think my advice might land them in court, but at least they're still alive.

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If it is such a clear case of self defense, why is your legal plan as presented above based on trying to decieve the court about what actually happended?
My plan is to protect my life by shooting someone who is trying to take my weapon from me to kill me. The court case is a result of a disagreement with my judgement by the State's attorney. They are claiming that I committed a crime. I contend that I did not. I never said to lie to the police, or tamper with evidence at the scene. A trial is about proving me guilty of a crime, but how the evidence is presented to the jury will decide whether you are found innocent or guilty. I don't have to lie at all. I never have to take the stand.

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Can we survive without doing things to make us go to court?
My contention here is that you are advising people to overthink the situation, which leads to hesitation, which leads to being killed. If the assailant had not brandished a deadly weapon with intent to begin the confrontation, then my gun would remain concealed and wouldn't be an issue. That changes the entire scenario, because now the assailant doesn't know I have a weapon, so I can assume his approaching me does not have a deadly intent. But once he knows I have a gun, approaching me and ignoring commands to stop...doesn't that make you think his intentions are malevolent? I think that's where we disagree.

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Again, I'm not saying this may not be a good shoot situation. But a lot of the justifications being tossed out basically boil down to "I was scared that something bad might happen" and that is not ordinarily grounds for using lethal force.
I'm pretty sure that brandishing a deadly weapon with intent to do bodily harm is classified as assault with a deadly weapon. He didn't have to follow through to commit a felony here. I have every right to be "scared that something bad might happen" to me. Then he follows that up by disarming at the sight of my gun (gun trumps knife), so he drops knife and proceeds to approach me despite commands not to do so. Assuming that I walk away and he doesn't continue to pursue me, then the confrontation ends right there. The fact that he continues to pursue me despite warnings again indicates further intent to do harm. All I'm saying is, shoot if you have to, don't say anything to the police about it that can be used against you, and give your lawyer something to work with. In the end, your freedom and your livelihood depends on who can use the physical evidence to paint the prettiest picture to the jury. You contend that the State's attorney will charge me with shooting an unarmed man. I contend that my life was clearly in danger and that the shooting was justified. You claim that I am trying to deceive the court, but I claim the State's attorney is deceiving the court by falsely charging me of a crime that I didn't commit. I hire a lawyer to present the physical evidence to a jury in a way that benefits me. I really don't care how "creative" the lawyer is, as long as he is successful. Why? Because I committed no crime.
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Old 08-27-2011, 02:11   #128
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Any time you are involved in deciding to use lethal force there better be a number of WHAT IFS running through your head. If you are not thinking about the WHAT IFS you don't understand how the game is played. My 2 cents.
I fully understand how my game is played, I don't go by Obama or anyone else's laws when it comes down to protecting myself or family... He's a dead man and i wont loose a mins sleep about it. And he better hope someone else was around ,,, are he will lay there till someone comes along. I have been in front of a judge for being shot at while I was a teenager by a drug head that we were trying to stop and have a FIST fight with ,,,the legal system is a joke because of the people we have running our country.
I have close friends n NM and TX that are scared to go out and check on there cows and ranches because of the drug runners coming across the border,if it wasn't for our gov. Having so many people scared to protect there selves and there belongings alot of that would have come to a stop and we would have some FAT coyotes to hunt down there.i also fill that people who abuse kids sexually and rape women,, should never see inside of a jailcell and let us feed them for years till some lawyer try to prove they crazy.

But like I said that's my 2 cents and way of living, but i have been told I was born a 100 yrs to late also.
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:40   #129
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Originally Posted by poodleshooter1 View Post
Good post except for the part about convincing the cops why you felt you had to shoot. That conversation is to be had with an ATTORNEY.
Why? In Kentucky, for example, if you explain to the police why you shot and it appears to be self-defense, they are legally prohibited from arresting you or starting any prosecution. If you save that for an attorney, they HAVE TO arrest you, indict you, etc., and if you hold out long enough, you can go to prison. It is seriously foolish to give someone the advice to not talk to the police in a self-defense shooting, since the sole difference between going home and a murder charge can be your own statement as to your subjective reasonm from shooting. If you don't think an arrest can snowball all the way to a conviction, once you are a murder defendant in the county jail, you don't know much about the legal system.
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Old 08-27-2011, 04:43   #130
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Originally Posted by barnettbill View Post
Texas... Castle Doctrine... Drop 'em.
If you are going to rely on the castle doctrine and Texas law to back you up, it would help if you first leanred what they say. Once you shoot an unarmed guy walking toward you, it's too late to check and see if the Castle Doctrine helps...it doesn't.
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Old 08-27-2011, 05:34   #131
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I've just read through this entire thread, and it's got my brain spinning. IMO, several very good points have been made. You shouldnt pull your weapon unless you intend to use it. If someone is approaching me with a knife, it is my belief beyond a doubt that his intent is to cause me great harm in some way shape or form. In that situation, I would have immediately pulled and fired if I felt I could not avoid the confrontation. The aggressor has showed intent to cause me great bodily harm with a weapon, and I would be within the law to use deadly force. In a situation where the victim brandishes the weapon and the perpetrator drops their weapon, there are several ways that could play out. First, you don't know if they have another weapon. If you tell them to stand down, and they stop approaching you, it's reasonable to say they aren't necessarily a threat. If however they continue to approach you after they've dropped their weapon, I believe you can reasonably assume they are still intent on causing you harm, either with a second weapon (hidden) or your own by attempting to disarm you, at which point I feel it's safe to say you still have a right to shoot, however it will be much harder to convince the jury of that. Each state is different in it's laws regarding the use of deadly force and self defense. I reside in Florida, and in my state you have no duty to retreat and are allowed to meet force with force, including deadly force IF necessary. There are variables upon variables in every situation. I've spent hours researching my state laws, as well as actual events that occurred where deadly force was used and what the circumstances were, as well as the outcome from a legal standpoint. A friend of mine also made a very good point to me when I was somewhat new to firearms and such in general. She told me that god forbid I did ever have to use my gun to defend myself, not to just fire once. The more shots youve fired the more it shows how terrified and in fear for your life you were. If you fire several shots, it shows you were truly in fear for your life and were ensuring that the threat was truly gone. Fire only one shot, it may come across as you were not really that scared. Obviously again there are variables, like wether or not there are innocent bystanders nearby and such, but I felt she made a very good point none the less. Your responsible for where each bullet ends up. The more in the perpetrator, the better in my opinion. Im not any kind of expert, but I've invested a good amount of time researching this, because time is free but life is priceless. Know your state laws, and know at best what to do when any situation presents itself. Play it out in your head, with as many variables as you can. Sure, you never know 100% what will happen if the time ever comes, but preparation and awareness will play a major role in the outcome as a whole. Just my .02


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Except for the lack of paragraphs, this is an excellent distillation of the relevant facts.
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Old 08-27-2011, 09:17   #132
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Originally Posted by TDC20 View Post
Well David, we both agree that our judgment of the situation is on opposite ends of the spectrum.
That is my point. This is not an either-or scenario. This is one that has a number of variables that need to be addressed, and many here seem to be suggesting that they get to ignore those variables if they feel scared. It doesn't work that way.
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I never said to lie about the event in court. What I meant to say is that my lawyer could present the evidence in a way that places reasonable doubt in the minds of the jurors. Remember, it's all about who paints the best picture, right?
That is very different from having your lawyer falsely claim that you never saw the BG drop his weapon, or that you moved the weapon after the shooting.
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See, we just disagree on our assessments. I have been robbed before, I think I can figure out what the intent here is.
That is the problem. You think you can do something that you can't. You can't read his mind. You can only guess at what he is wanting to do based on his actions. So you need to be able to explain why his actions led you to reasonably believe you were in immediate fear of loss of life or great bodily injury (or whatever legal standard is appropriate).
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You think the guy wants to give you a hug, I think he wants to kill me. I think your advice will get people killed unnecessarily. I think my advice might land them in court, but at least they're still alive.
Whoa, let's not make things up! Nowhere have I said anything about giving hugs, and I have repeatedly said this can be a shooting scenario. If you want to discuss something at least be honest about what the other party has said.
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My plan is to protect my life by shooting someone who is trying to take my weapon from me to kill me.
Great. Now all you need to do is explain why it was reasonable to assume that an unarmed man who is walking slowly toward you while talking should be considered "trying to take my weapon away from me to kill me."
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The court case is a result of a disagreement with my judgment by the State's attorney. They are claiming that I committed a crime. I contend that I did not. I never said to lie to the police, or tamper with evidence at the scene.
"Secondly, your lawyer can claim that you never saw the assailant actually drop his weapon (maybe under the stress you got tunnel vision)""At a later date, if there is no video or eyewitnesses (your lawyer will know before your trial due to disclosure laws), your lawyer could claim that after the shooting you moved the weapon a safe distance away from the assailant so it couldn't be used by him if he regained consciousness."
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A trial is about proving me guilty of a crime, but how the evidence is presented to the jury will decide whether you are found innocent or guilty. I don't have to lie at all. I never have to take the stand.
True, you don't. Which means the jurors never get to hear about why you thought it was reasonable to shoot an unarmed man who had dropped his weapon.
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My contention here is that you are advising people to overthink the situation, which leads to hesitation, which leads to being killed.
My contention is that your contention is incorrect. I don't want anyone to overthink anything. If deciding if your situation meets the legal requirements for use of force and if your response is reasonable leads to hesitation you have other problems.
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If the assailant had not brandished a deadly weapon with intent to begin the confrontation, then my gun would remain concealed and wouldn't be an issue. That changes the entire scenario, because now the assailant doesn't know I have a weapon, so I can assume his approaching me does not have a deadly intent.
OK, if he doesn't know you have a weapon and approaches you one assumes he does not have deadly intent, but if he knows you do have a weapon before he approaches it automatically changes to he does have deadly intent? Sorry, that simply does not work on any level.
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But once he knows I have a gun, approaching me and ignoring commands to stop...doesn't that make you think his intentions are malevolent?
Malevolent intentions do not provide justification for deadly force.
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I'm pretty sure that brandishing a deadly weapon with intent to do bodily harm is classified as assault with a deadly weapon. He didn't have to follow through to commit a felony here.
Don't know about "here", I do know that he is no longer brandishing a deadly weapon with intent to do anything, and that he has actually indicated in a very clear manner that he is not following through with that, as he has clearly discarded the weapon.
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I have every right to be "scared that something bad might happen" to me.
Sure. But again that does not lead in and of itself to a legal justification for using deadly force.
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Then he follows that up by disarming at the sight of my gun (gun trumps knife), so he drops knife and proceeds to approach me despite commands not to do so. Assuming that I walk away and he doesn't continue to pursue me, then the confrontation ends right there. The fact that he continues to pursue me despite warnings again indicates further intent to do harm.
Again, so what? Are you in reasonable fear of loss of life or great harm (or whatever the requirement is) in your state? I've got bad news for you....failure to listen to someone and follow their orders doesn't really rise to much of a force level. He can follow you all over the place. Maybe he want to get your license plate so he can call the police to report some crazy guy threatening him with a gun.
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You contend that the State's attorney will charge me with shooting an unarmed man.
And the State will be correct, right? Given the OP there is no question about that fact. The only question is if that shooting was legal.
[/quote] I contend that my life was clearly in danger and that the shooting was justified. You claim that I am trying to deceive the court, but I claim the State's attorney is deceiving the court by falsely charging me of a crime that I didn't commit.[/quote]
I'm sorry, you are the one who suggested having your attorney falsely present fictions as facts: "your lawyer can claim that you never saw the assailant actually drop his weapon"; "your lawyer could claim that after the shooting you moved the weapon a safe distance away from the assailant so it couldn't be used by him if he regained consciousness." And understand that you have committed a crime. The law excuses the commission of crimes based on justification.
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I hire a lawyer to present the physical evidence to a jury in a way that benefits me. I really don't care how "creative" the lawyer is, as long as he is successful. Why? Because I committed no crime.
And there is your biggest problem. See, if you really think that what you did was right and that your actions were reasonable and legal, your defense is "this is what I did and it was reasonable and legal." By suggesting that your lawyer would need to do otherwise is pretty indicative of the fact that you realize your position really isn't that strong based on the actual facts of the case.
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Old 08-27-2011, 09:19   #133
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If you are going to rely on the castle doctrine and Texas law to back you up, it would help if you first leanred what they say. Once you shoot an unarmed guy walking toward you, it's too late to check and see if the Castle Doctrine helps...it doesn't.
Yep. Lots of folks (I'd suggest maybe most folks) really don't understand what Castle Doctrine really is and how it is used.
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Old 08-27-2011, 09:22   #134
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Originally Posted by Bluestreakfl View Post
. A friend of mine also made a very good point to me when I was somewhat new to firearms and such in general. She told me that god forbid I did ever have to use my gun to defend myself, not to just fire once. The more shots youve fired the more it shows how terrified and in fear for your life you were. If you fire several shots, it shows you were truly in fear for your life and were ensuring that the threat was truly gone. Fire only one shot, it may come across as you were not really that scared.
I just noticed this. Your friend gave you bad advice.
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Old 08-27-2011, 09:47   #135
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Why? In Kentucky, for example, if you explain to the police why you shot and it appears to be self-defense, they are legally prohibited from arresting you or starting any prosecution. If you save that for an attorney, they HAVE TO arrest you, indict you, etc., and if you hold out long enough, you can go to prison. It is seriously foolish to give someone the advice to not talk to the police in a self-defense shooting, since the sole difference between going home and a murder charge can be your own statement as to your subjective reasonm from shooting. If you don't think an arrest can snowball all the way to a conviction, once you are a murder defendant in the county jail, you don't know much about the legal system.
I'm not saying to never talk to police in any self-defense shooting. It depends on the circumstances. In this case, after you describe the facts, the officers hearing your story are going to think either 1. you are justified, or 2. they're going to respond with, "...so you're saying that you shot him after he dropped the knife?" As others in this thread have. If it's the former, then yeah, they may release you. If it's the latter, then they charge you and depending on what you said (because it's been proven that people make mistakes after the stress and adrenaline involved with having to shoot someone in SD) you have seriously damaged your defense.

I wasn't aware of the law in Kentucky, but what's the difference if you wait in lockup a couple of hours for your attorney to arrive, get his advice on the matter, and then give your statement to the police? You need a couple of hours to settle down anyway before saying anything, so you're less likely to make a mistake in the confusion and "fog of war" so to speak.

I'm not trying to start an argument here, I'm trying to figure out how to deal with this situation without ending up dead (wrestling with assailant for my weapon) or in prison, possibly on death row. I think it's terrible advice to tell someone to talk to police immediately after a SD shoot. Why? Because it's been proven that there is confusion. Your body has adrenaline surging, your hands will probably be shaking, you will be thinking how close you came to dying, etc. It's very difficult to get your mind to focus on the facts in that condition. For example, I have had LE officers tell me that in police shootings, it's very common that the LEO involved will not be able to give the correct answer as to how many shots he fired. He might say 2 or 3 or 5 when he actually dumped an entire magazine. The difference is that he is going to get the benefit of the doubt, and the State's attorney is unlikely to charge an LEO. In my case, if there's a SD-hostile SA, anything I say is going to be used against me. And under the duress of immediate post-life/death situation, I might make a mistake. Forget about ever being able to retract anything you tell the police during that interrogation. It's probably on video and it will be used against you as evidence. Even if it is incorrect information! (an honest mistake) So, I think advising people to talk to police immediately after a shoot, especially where there may be questionable circumstances, without first consulting an attorney, is really really bad advice. In the worst case scenario, you may end up with a needle in your arm.

One thing for sure this thread has taught me and that is to get some OC spray and carry that whenever I have my CCW weapon on me. I believe that is the correct and best answer here. Saves you from all kinds of bad things happening, both during and after this plays out.
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Old 08-27-2011, 10:09   #136
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One point that should be blatantly obvious to everyone at this point.

It doesn't matter which side of this debate is right or wrong....

The fact that on a gun centric forum there is a controversy over whether shooting the guy under these circumstances is justifiable should raise a HUGE RED FLAG as to whether a jury of 12 "normal" non-gun centric folks will think it is reasonable.

They set the reasonable standard, not us. And if we can't even agree... good luck with the jury.

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Old 08-27-2011, 12:47   #137
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One point that should be blatantly obvious to everyone at this point.

It doesn't matter which side of this debate is right or wrong....

The fact that on a gun centric forum there is a controversy over whether shooting the guy under these circumstances is justifiable should raise a HUGE RED FLAG as to whether a jury of 12 "normal" non-gun centric folks will think it is reasonable.

They set the reasonable standard, not us. And if we can't even agree... good luck with the jury.

Randy
IMO that really sums it all up, and is the essence of the whole issue.
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Old 08-27-2011, 13:36   #138
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Originally Posted by steveksux View Post
One point that should be blatantly obvious to everyone at this point.

It doesn't matter which side of this debate is right or wrong....

The fact that on a gun centric forum there is a controversy over whether shooting the guy under these circumstances is justifiable should raise a HUGE RED FLAG as to whether a jury of 12 "normal" non-gun centric folks will think it is reasonable.

They set the reasonable standard, not us. And if we can't even agree... good luck with the jury.

Randy
That is a good point. However, I sometimes like to think that most of those offering advice/suggestions/feedback/thought process are doing so under the knowledge that 12 "peers" will be the judge so that is already taken into account
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Old 08-27-2011, 15:17   #139
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That is a good point. However, I sometimes like to think that most of those offering advice/suggestions/feedback/thought process are doing so under the knowledge that 12 "peers" will be the judge so that is already taken into account
I agree, I have no doubt they are factoring in the 12 peers that will be the arbiters of "reasonableness" when giving their advice, but I also think that groupthink tends to set in and groups such as this start believing they are a lot more mainstream than they really are.

Every group tends to think their positions are eminently reasonable, since it seems so reasonable to them. From birthers to Obamatrons, they all think they're reasonable.

I come at this thinking you can justify it, and thought I laid out a pretty good case for it. I'm throwing this out there even though it really contradicts that, essentially tends to prove me wrong...

Randy

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Old 08-27-2011, 15:41   #140
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So it really boils down to our understanding of what the laws of your state are, and how thoses laws will be interpreted by the jury. You must be able to present your actions as being within those legal limit as judged by the cultural standards of the jury. What works in Arizona or Colorado may be harder to sell to a jury in New Jersey or Illinois.

As a partially disabled 57 yr old vet living in Colorado my response to the original post is very simple. I believe the attacker to have the intent and physical ability to inflict lethal bodily harm to myself and or others at this moment in time. I am in fear of losing my life if I do not utilize possibly lethal force to protect myself and others.

BANG!! BANG!! BANG!!!

That said, I've had three instances where the use of lethal force would have been justified but the attackers fled when they realized they had brought knives or baseball bats to a gunfight. I'd like to thank them for fleeing so I didn't have to present my justification for the use of lethal force.
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Old 08-27-2011, 16:22   #141
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Why? In Kentucky, for example, if you explain to the police why you shot and it appears to be self-defense, they are legally prohibited from arresting you or starting any prosecution. If you save that for an attorney, they HAVE TO arrest you, indict you, etc., and if you hold out long enough, you can go to prison.
First of all, the police don't start "prosecution", the prosecutor does. If you are really an attorney, you should know that.


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It is seriously foolish to give someone the advice to not talk to the police in a self-defense shooting, since the sole difference between going home and a murder charge can be your own statement as to your subjective reasonm from shooting. If you don't think an arrest can snowball all the way to a conviction, once you are a murder defendant in the county jail, you don't know much about the legal system.
You're wrong, and biased. It is foolish to give the advice that you have to convince the police at the scene that you are innocent as DeafSmith stated. Again, if you are really an attorney, you should know better. The police merely arrest people for crimes. It is the responsibility of the prosecution to convince a jury that you committed it. It is up to your attorney, to convince the jury that you didn't. The jury decideds guilt. NOT the police. The scene of the crime is not a court room. Maybe in your brand of LE the cops are judge, jury and executioner.

More people have been sent to prison or wrongly convicted because of the idiotic advice of convincing the police at the scene that you are innocent. It's because of idiotic advice like that that most arrests turn into convictions. Most people are not attorneys and not in a position to adequately represent themselves. Furthermore, again, Cops are not a jury, judge, or attorneys, they have neither the education nor the credentials to decide on legal matters. The best advice is to let counsel who has spent years in law school, passed the bar exam, and has decades of experience under their belt to represent you in such a case. But go ahead, keep telling Joe Bob Farmer to represent himself in front of your fantasy court held by the police at the scene. I'm really starting to doubt that you are really an attorney....or is it that you are also a Cop and enjoy baiting people?

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Old 08-27-2011, 16:39   #142
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Good post except for the part about convincing the cops why you felt you had to shoot. That conversation is to be had with an ATTORNEY.
It is best to give the cops the dynamics of the situation. That is, 'Sir, I am the one attacked, and these are the ones that attacked me." Then point out any evidence, such as weapons, cuts, bruises, witnesses, etc..., BEFORE they get lost or just walk away. Then tell the cops you will give them 100 percent cooperation but... you need to speak to an attorney first and give yourself time to collect your thoughts.

To not do that and clam up is to spend several days in jail before you even get a chance to talk to a lawyer, and to maybe see some of that evidence walk off.

While yes it's prosecutors (and a grand jury) that do the indictment and prosecution, it's the cop that throws you in jail to begin with, AND COLLECT THE EVIDENCE.

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Old 08-27-2011, 18:15   #143
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Originally Posted by poodleshooter1 View Post
First of all, the police don't start "prosecution", the prosecutor does. If you are really an attorney, you should know that.
Actually, in the real world, (a) everything starts with the police and (b) Kentucky law, KRS 503.085, the statute I mentioned that prohibits the police from arresting you for a self-defense shooting - the same one I teach classes on to several different law enforcement agencies - says: "As used in this subsection, the term "criminal prosecution" includes arresting, detaining in custody, and charging or prosecuting the defendant."

So yes, I'm really an attorney and you're really not.

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You're wrong, and biased. It is foolish to give the advice that you have to convince the police at the scene that you are innocent as DeafSmith stated. Again, if you are really an attorney, you should know better. The police merely arrest people for crimes. It is the responsibility of the prosecution to convince a jury that you committed it. It is up to your attorney, to convince the jury that you didn't. The jury decideds guilt. NOT the police. The scene of the crime is not a court room. Maybe in your brand of LE the cops are judge, jury and executioner.

More people have been sent to prison or wrongly convicted because of the idiotic advice of convincing the police at the scene that you are innocent. It's because of idiotic advice like that that most arrests turn into convictions. Most people are not attorneys and not in a position to adequately represent themselves. Furthermore, again, Cops are not a jury, judge, or attorneys, they have neither the education nor the credentials to decide on legal matters. The best advice is to let counsel who has spent years in law school, passed the bar exam, and has decades of experience under their belt to represent you in such a case. But go ahead, keep telling Joe Bob Farmer to represent himself in front of your fantasy court held by the police at the scene. I'm really starting to doubt that you are really an attorney....or is it that you are also a Cop and enjoy baiting people?

You really have no idea what you are talking about. To simplify for anyone who may be mislead by the complete nonsense you wrote here:

A self-defense shooting means you intentionally shot someone and either injured or killed them.

Intentionally shooting someone and either injuring or killing them is also the definition of murder, or a couple of degrees of felony assault here (different titles in different states).

Under Kentucky law, (and some other recent "castle doctrine" adopting states), "A person who uses force as permitted in KRS 503.050, 503.055, 503.070, and 503.080 (self defense, defense of another and defense of property) is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force...." (that includes immunity from arrest - see above)

The difference between using force "as permitted in KRS 503.050, 503.055, 503.070, and 503.080" and illegally using force to commit murder or assault is your own subjective belief that you were in danger of death, serious physical injury, etc. That means, if you don't say it, the police don't know it.

If you don't state your subjective reason for shooting, it is up to the discretion of the police whether to charge you with a crime and put you in jail. No attorneys are involved at that point (no they don't have to wait for yours to show up and no, they don't necessarily care what you have to say after they put you in jail).

If the police arest you, the next step may be the grand jury - the prosecutor can take it there (usually) or if he doesn't, the police or even a private citizen can present the case. You have no right to appear or speak to the grand jury and if you do appear, at your request, it is with no attorney. The prosecutor is the only lawyer they speak to and they decide whether to send you to the circuit court. Normally, only the police appear to indict you and, if you gave them a reason for the shooting, they will tell the grand jury - that's the only way they are going to hear your defense unless the prosecutor decides to allow you to appear.

If you get a preliminary hearing before the grand jury meets, that may be a chance for your lawyer to help you, but it also doesn't necessarily stop the prosecution if the judge at the preliminary hearing dismisses your charge - the prosecutor, cops or others can still go to the grand jury. If the grand jury meets first, you don't get a hearing.

At that point, you have already spent plenty of money and, unless you can make a very high bond, you've been in jail for a few weeks and may be unemployed, etc.

From there you go to circuit court, where you are a criminal defendant and the prosecutor may ffer to let you plead to a lesser felony, if he's busy, but why? It costs him nothing to prosecute you - just gets him more publicity for the next election. That's not the best time to realize maybe you should have told the police why you shot.

How does this work in the real world? Louisville Metro Police officer McKenzie Mattingly shot and killed a criminal who tried to rob him during an undercover operation. The shooting looked questionable, even though the guy was armed, and Mattingly decided not to make a statement until he spoke to his lawyer. Mattingly lost his job, home, retirement, and everything he had before finally being found not guilty, based on self-defense, at trial. Unfortunately, some police tend to believe that crap advice they get about not making a statement until they talk to a lawyer too. In the same city, many more questionable shootings have been cleared by a grand jury - but in each one the officers cooperated at the scene of the shooting.
Here's an article about it, there are many more.

He did not get his job or money back when he was found "not guilty."

I know from reading your crazy rant that you won't get it, but this is for others who will. This is what I mean when I say "don't talk to the police" in a justified shooting case is bad advice.

In an unjustified shooting? May as well not talk to the police and good luck.
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Old 08-27-2011, 21:06   #144
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Say, Stop or I'll shoot. Then shoot.



The threat hasn't stopped.
Amen!
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Old 08-27-2011, 22:01   #145
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"Under Kentucky law, (and some other recent "castle doctrine" adopting states), "A person who uses force as permitted in KRS 503.050, 503.055, 503.070, and 503.080 (self defense, defense of another and defense of property) is justified in using such force and is immune from criminal prosecution and civil action for the use of such force...." (that includes immunity from arrest - see above)"

Bren, what does it take to qualify under this statute to be immune from criminal prosecution? Because, the way I read it, all I would have to do is to claim self-defense ("He was going to kill me, I didn't have any choice but to shoot him to save my own life.") and that's it. Do I have to convince the police that it was self defense, so it's up to their judgement as to whether my story qualifies as truly self defense? Does it require me to give a second-by-second account with every detail? That's what I'm afraid of. Actually, if they would allow me to sit down with a computer or even a pen and paper and put together a written account of what happened, I would feel better about that. I wouldn't want to be on video, under duress and nervous, and be seen making a mistake and then have to correct myself. When something like that is presented to a jury, the prosecution will use it to show that I was making up a story, even if I am trying to recount the facts as honestly and accurately as I can. That is certainly not going to help my case.

This is a tough situation. If you decide not to shoot and reholster and square up with the guy, you might end up dead, especially if this guy is an ex-con with 5 or 10 years of prison weightlifting in his recent past. If you shoot him "unarmed", you have an extremely weak case if the SA decides to prosecute you. I'm not a lawyer licensed to practice in 50 states, so I'm sure there are both subtle and wide differences among the states for what the law says about the aftermath of a SD shooting. This Kentucky law sounds good for people defending themselves, but how many people would actually know this? Hopefully anyone who CCW's in Kentucky, but it's not like that here. My CCW class instructor (Missouri) advised me not to say anything to the police until I had an attorney present.

I'm sure LEO's loathe the perp who won't talk until he "lawyers up" after the fact. I'm sure it happens quite often, and their lawyer comes up with some kind of creative defense or gets critical evidence suppressed, and because the perp didn't offer anything that the prosecutor can use against him, he walks. I understand the frustration there. On the other hand, why should someone provide the prosecution with evidence to be used against them? It's a tricky situation there that could work for you or against you, but when my life is at risk, I would rather play it safe.

I still think the right response in the OP's scenario is to carry an OC spray. That way, I hit the "unarmed" guy in the face with that and make a clean getaway with my unfired sidearm. No shots fired, no night in jail, no prosecution and no lawyers. If pepper spraying someone who is unarmed turns out to be an unlawful act for some reason, it's not going to land me in any "serious" trouble. It won't make the front page of the paper and it won't help the SA's political career. I'm researching pepper sprays now and it will always be on my person when I'm carrying just for this reason.

David, you are an honest person with a lot of integrity. I used to be that way, actually, I still am when dealing with people on a personal level. But when it comes to placing my life in the hands of 12 jurors, a judge, and a couple of lawyers, the situation changes. I'm jaded, I admit it. I watched the President of the United States, a licensed lawyer at the time, argue about what the definition of "is" is, how "she was having sex with me but I wasn't having sex with her". He perjured himself before a grand jury, and suborned the perjury of others to the grand jury. He was eventually disbarred and impeached, but he never spent a day in jail or lost one day of his Presidency. Most politicians don't, unless they were former governors of Illinois. Look at the people that President pardoned...lol. Then I watched OJ walk in a ridiculous sham of a trial. There are so many high profile cases like that they're too numerous to list. It's like what Denzel Washington told his young rookie trainee in "Training Day", "It's not about what you know. It's about what you can prove." Like SteveK said, we assume that all jurors will be reasonable, rational, and intelligent. This is rarely true, and sometimes the attorneys purposely try to get jurors who are not so they can work them into a favorable verdict. In that sense, a trial is a game where your life hangs in the balance. Deceive the court? As long as it's legal and it gets me off the hook, you betcha! I served on a jury once and the judge's instructions were so bounded that she did everything but tell us directly that we had to find in favor of the defendant. It was silly to even have the trial. I wish I had those 2 days of my life back.

Anyway, back on topic. My answer to the OP's scenario is to carry pepper spray that I can quickly deploy with the weak hand. Could save my life and livelihood.
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Old 08-27-2011, 22:32   #146
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[QUOTE=Bren;17836794]
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Originally Posted by Bren View Post
So yes, I'm really an attorney and you're really not.
How does this work in the real world? Louisville Metro Police officer McKenzie Mattingly shot and killed a criminal who tried to rob him during an undercover operation. The shooting looked questionable, even though the guy was armed, and Mattingly decided not to make a statement until he spoke to his lawyer. Mattingly lost his job, home, retirement, and everything he had before finally being found not guilty, based on self-defense, at trial. Unfortunately, some police tend to believe that crap advice they get about not making a statement until they talk to a lawyer too.

He did not get his job or money back when he was found "not guilty."
So, according to you, because Mattingly didn't speak to investigators prior to seeking legal counsel he screwed himself? Had he spoken it investigators, none of this would have happened? Pleeease...



The prevailing attitudes towards us is rarely positive, and we are protected against self-incrimination as anyone else. You do not represent police officers, that is clear. You can have your opinions, but I seriously doubt any police officer would take what you just said as responsible.Your legal advice and a buck won't even buy me a donut.
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Old 08-28-2011, 05:49   #147
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[QUOTE=Tilley;17837958]
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Originally Posted by Bren View Post
So, according to you, because Mattingly didn't speak to investigators prior to seeking legal counsel he screwed himself? Had he spoken it investigators, none of this would have happened? Pleeease...



The prevailing attitudes towards us is rarely positive, and we are protected against self-incrimination as anyone else. You do not represent police officers, that is clear. You can have your opinions, but I seriously doubt any police officer would take what you just said as responsible.Your legal advice and a buck won't even buy me a donut.
It's a case I've followed since it happened. I've even designed and taught a law enforcement in-service class based on this and other Louisville PD shooting cases. Yes, the point where his case took a wrong turn is, very likely, the point where he declined to make a statement, since intentionally killing someone, without a statement of justification, is the defnition of murder under Kentucky law - that's what they indicted him for (and tried him for). It starts with that little decision and snowballs from there. At every step it takes more to turn it around.

And yes, I do represent the police - I represent them in the lawsuits that come from shooting people and, besides being a lawyer, I'm specifically the "use of force" guy for a very large group of law enforcement/corrections officers. To date, I have won 100% of those suits.

Just because you guys saw "never talk to the police" on somebody's web site, doesn't make it good advice that you have to defend to the death. However, as to you and poodleshooter1 - don't talk to the polcie. Doesn't make any difference to me. In fact, I'd probably enjoy a thread more about you shooting somebody and being charged, than just about you shooting somebody.
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Old 08-28-2011, 08:47   #148
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Originally Posted by Bren View Post
Yes, the point where his case took a wrong turn is, very likely, the point where he declined to make a statement, since intentionally killing someone, without a statement of justification, is the defnition of murder under Kentucky law - that's what they indicted him for (and tried him for). It starts with that little decision and snowballs from there. At every step it takes more to turn it around.
So is a statement by the shooter the only thing that police look at when investigating a homicide? You make it sound as if incomplete, incompetent investigation and malicious prosecution is SOP in Kentucky.
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Old 08-28-2011, 11:06   #149
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I think what some are not understanding is that the advice of "don't talk to the police" does not mean "don't say anything at all to the police." Bren is right, at the scene you want to make sure they understand you are the victim. Standing mute tends to make people think you are hiding something.

Deaf and I often disagree on issues, but go back and read his post #142. You don't want to allow the police to interrogate you without having your attorney present, and youdon't want to talk about the details of the shooting for reasons already mentioned. But you are probably ahead of the game if you do tell them that you were attacked, who witnesses are, where evidence is, and so on. If you don't then they pretty much have to assume you are a BG and treat you as such
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Old 08-28-2011, 11:13   #150
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from TDC20:
It's not about what you know. It's about what you can prove.
Exactly. That is why "I was scared of the bad man" isn't much justification. You need to be able to expalin why you were scared, what you were scared of, and why responding with lethal force was the reasonble response to that.
Quote:
Like SteveK said, we assume that all jurors will be reasonable, rational, and intelligent.
I don't. I assume they are emotional and irrational, which is why you need to be able to convence them that shooting an unarmed man who was doing nothing more threatening to you than walking slowly toward you was the right thing to do.
Quote:
Deceive the court? As long as it's legal and it gets me off the hook, you betcha!
Again, if your plan is to decieve the court I would suggest you know yourself that what you are doing really doesn't look that good, otherwise you wouldn't see a need to change the picture.
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