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Old 12-27-2014, 16:03   #1
Irish26
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Would you shoot a man in the back?

Here's a scenario:

You are robbed at gunpoint. The crook has a gun to your face and you didn't have time to pull yours out. You hand him your wallet with $300 and various other items that you would have. You also hand over your watch worth $500. After this the crook turns and runs from you.

My question is, would you quickly draw your weapon and shoot him in the back?

Can you legally justify shooting him in the back? How about morally?

P.S. The money and watch are what I normally have on me. I don't want to be lectured on carrying cash and wearing an expensive watch. I have my reasons. For the sake of argument, lets assume you have the same belongings in this situation.
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:11   #2
barth
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This scenario? NO

Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish26 View Post
Here's a scenario:

You are robbed at gunpoint. The crook has a gun to your face and you didn't have time to pull yours out. You hand him your wallet with $300 and various other items that you would have. You also hand over your watch worth $500. After this the crook turns and runs from you.

My question is, would you quickly draw your weapon and shoot him in the back?

Can you legally justify shooting him in the back? How about morally?

P.S. The money and watch are what I normally have on me. I don't want to be lectured on carrying cash and wearing an expensive watch. I have my reasons. For the sake of argument, lets assume you have the same belongings in this situation.
Once the perp has successfully robbed you.
And is running away with his back turned.
1) How is your life in immanent danger requiring deadly force?
2) $800 for a life?
3) How much will Lawyer fees cost you after a back shooting?

In the old days back shooters were hung until dead.

Last edited by barth; 12-27-2014 at 17:13..
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:13   #3
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If he is armed, he could turn and shoot you, so he is a threat.

If you shoot and fail to stop him, he probably will shoot at you.

If you draw, get behind cover, and let him go with the "stuff", all you will have to do to finish up the event is to call the police and talk to them to make a report. VEry little emotional trauma will follow.

If you shoot him in the back, even if finally justified, you will have a whole lot of trouble and misery to go through. Being a good man, you will feel awful for a long time. It is unlikely you will feel like a hero.

I will venture that, if the shot is fired in anger, and not to protect life, it is morally wrong.
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:14   #4
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Legally, not really sure, guess it depends on the State. Morally, heck, I think you should shoot him on principal so he won't go rob(and maybe kill) the next person he holds up. Of course I guess you could maybe yell at him to get him to turn around, that way you could shoot him in the front and not have as much of a legal issue to deal with but either way you're going to end up in Court and you'll have to defend your actions even if you were justified in shooting him. It's a sad state of affairs that in our U.S.of A. a criminal can get away with just about anything but a upright Citizen has to fight for his Right to defend him/her self.
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:35   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish26 View Post
Here's a scenario:

You are robbed at gunpoint. The crook has a gun to your face and you didn't have time to pull yours out. You hand him your wallet with $300 and various other items that you would have. You also hand over your watch worth $500. After this the crook turns and runs from you.

My question is, would you quickly draw your weapon and shoot him in the back?
1. While it sucks to have $300 cash and a watch stolen, they are just material things that can be replaced.

2. Your scenario says that the criminal turns and runs away.

Unless that criminal turns around and points the gun at me again, the immediate threat to my life has passed. I can replace money through hard work. I can replace material items through hard work.

The criminal is running away. I'm running for cover then dialing 911.

My duty is to provide the police an accurate description of the criminal, and their last direction of travel. It is not my duty to go shoot a fleeing criminal in the back "on principal" or because that criminal might go rob and kill someone else.


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P.S. The money and watch are what I normally have on me. I don't want to be lectured on carrying cash and wearing an expensive watch. I have my reasons. For the sake of argument, lets assume you have the same belongings in this situation.
$300 in cash is not a huge amount of cash. I'm fortunate enough to have more than that amount in my wallet right now. A $500 watch is far from being truly expensive.

In what environment and situation are you putting yourself into where you would even consider shooting a fleeing criminal in the back over the sum total of $800?
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Last edited by JaPes; 12-27-2014 at 16:44..
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:43   #6
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:46   #7
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While sometimes it could be justified to shoot someone in the back, I don't think this would be one of them. Now it could vary a bit by state. Maybe in Texas this could be legal.

But no I would not shoot unless threatened again. I would draw and look for cover. Then call the police as soon as I'm out of danger.


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Old 12-27-2014, 16:47   #8
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From a legal stand point, you would probably be I deep stuffing if you did. From a moral stand point, I have no issue with it. In some circumstances, the loss of the things the op enumerates could mean you or your family starving to death. The reason that it was once legal to shoot and/ or kill in defense of one's property is that one's property could be what was keeping one send one's family alive. Some might argue that no one is going of starved to death in today's society, but "don't worry, the government will save you" are not reassuring words. My two cents.
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Old 12-27-2014, 16:52   #9
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I can't think of any state where I know that shooting fleeing felon by a civilian would be legal, I know lots where it isn't.

Like it or not, once he turns and runs, the incident is over. If he come back it's another story (and another incident.)
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Old 12-27-2014, 17:59   #10
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I would "Shoot them all in the hand."
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Old 12-27-2014, 18:03   #11
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I would "Shoot them all in the hand."
End of thread.
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Old 12-27-2014, 18:09   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish26 View Post
Here's a scenario:

You are robbed at gunpoint. The crook has a gun to your face and you didn't have time to pull yours out. You hand him your wallet with $300 and various other items that you would have. You also hand over your watch worth $500. After this the crook turns and runs from you.

My question is, would you quickly draw your weapon and shoot him in the back?

Can you legally justify shooting him in the back? How about morally?

P.S. The money and watch are what I normally have on me. I don't want to be lectured on carrying cash and wearing an expensive watch. I have my reasons. For the sake of argument, lets assume you have the same belongings in this situation.
Morally, I think it's fine to shoot him in the back - no moral issue at all, IMO. I don't even understand people who say things like:

Quote:
Originally Posted by barth View Post
2) $800 for a life?
The robber's life has no value to me. I wouldn't feel bad about it, if he was unarmed and all he did was insult me. My only concern would be whether I could be in trouble for it.

Legally, it's a different story and no, you probably can't legally justify shooting him in the back in most states.

In Kentucky, maybe. Here is my reasoning:
1. Our supreme court says that the flight from a robbery scene is a necessary part of completing the crime and is, therefore, part of the robbery (where they are considering actions that determine the degree of robbery committed).
2. In Kentucky, in 2006, our self-defense law was amended to allow deadly force to prevent any "felony involving the use of force";
3. Both degrees of robbery are felonies involving the use of force, as a statutory element.
4. However, the argument that flight was part of completing the robbery and deadly force was authorized, therefore, to prevent the robber from escaping, has never been used in court here.

In Texas, almost certainly justified:

Quote:
A person is justified in using deadly force against another to protect land or tangible, movable property:
(1) if he would be justified in using force against the other under Section 9.41; and
(2) when and to the degree he reasonably believes the deadly force is immediately necessary:
. . .
(B) to prevent the other who is fleeing immediately after committing burglary, robbery, aggravated robbery, or theft during the nighttime from escaping with the property; and
(3) he reasonably believes that:(A) the land or property cannot be protected or recovered by any other means; or
(B) the use of force other than deadly force to protect or recover the land or property would expose the actor or another to a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury. -

See more at: http://codes.lp.findlaw.com/txstatut....W3HjYkOV.dpuf
In the other 48 states, I'd feel bad about my future prospects if I shot the robber in the back, but there may be some that would allow it.
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Old 12-27-2014, 18:19   #13
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Pretty sure it's not legal here in FL. and nope.

Here is the FL Statutes on Justifiable Use of Force.

http://www.leg.state.fl.us/statutes/...0776/0776.html
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Old 12-27-2014, 18:38   #14
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If I recall, isn't it LEGAL for police to shoot a 'fleeing felon'?

If the police have technically the same self-defense standards as an ordinary citizen, wouldn't it also be legal for an ordinary citizen to shoot a fleeing felon?

Or are LEO rights expanded in that situation, the thinking being that someone dangerous enough to shoot at a cop (or whatever) is such a danger to the general public that deadly force is justified?
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Old 12-27-2014, 19:03   #15
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IF you shoot him in the back after he has robbed you and is running away and your life is not in danger ..... don't hang around to explain it to the police afterwards.
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Old 12-27-2014, 19:05   #16
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Would you shoot a man in the back?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cdog533 View Post
If I recall, isn't it LEGAL for police to shoot a 'fleeing felon'?

If the police have technically the same self-defense standards as an ordinary citizen, wouldn't it also be legal for an ordinary citizen to shoot a fleeing felon?

Or are LEO rights expanded in that situation, the thinking being that someone dangerous enough to shoot at a cop (or whatever) is such a danger to the general public that deadly force is justified?

You kinda nailed it. Kinda. You are talking about two separate things. Police can shoot a fleeing felon in some cases to prevent that felons escape. LEO also have the authority to shoot a fleeing person who poses a great risk to the public.

LEO do have the right to shoot a fleeing felon who poses a dangerous threat to the public and or other officers. That is specific to LEO though. And it is not really a situation that would be considered self defense. At that point they are protecting the public. Which most people aren't tasked with doing.

That said a good attorney might be able make that argument under the right circumstances. I would not want to be the person trying to make that case though.




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Old 12-27-2014, 19:26   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cdog533 View Post
If I recall, isn't it LEGAL for police to shoot a 'fleeing felon'?
No. The police can only shoot certain fleeing felons in certain circumstances, under constitutional law, and even fewer circumstances under most states' laws. If you worked 20 years for the NYPD, you'd like never hear of a case where an officer used deadly force under that justification.

Quote:
If the police have technically the same self-defense standards as an ordinary citizen, wouldn't it also be legal for an ordinary citizen to shoot a fleeing felon?
Shooting a fleeing felon and self defense are entirely different areas of the law. The police do have the same self-defense rights as you. However, only Texas expressly allows non-police to shoot some fleeing felons. Most states only allow police to shoot a fleeing felon, in the rare circumstance that all other legal requirements are met.

Quote:
Or are LEO rights expanded in that situation, the thinking being that someone dangerous enough to shoot at a cop (or whatever) is such a danger to the general public that deadly force is justified?
Depends on state law. Here in Kentucky, there has never been a reported case in which a police officer relied on our "fleeing felon" justification for a shooting, so it is unclear what would be required to prove our element that "the defendant believes that the person to be arrested is likely to endanger human life unless apprehended without delay".

Here is an example - Kentucky's "shoot fleeing felons law"
Quote:
(2) The use of deadly physical force by a defendant upon another person is justifiable under subsection (1) only when:
(a) The defendant, in effecting the arrest, is authorized to act as a peace officer; and
(b) The arrest is for a felony involving the use or threatened use of physical force likely to cause death or serious physical injury; and
(c) The defendant believes that the person to be arrested is likely to endanger human life unless apprehended without delay.
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Old 12-27-2014, 19:48   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Irish26 View Post
Here's a scenario:

You are robbed at gunpoint. The crook has a gun to your face and you didn't have time to pull yours out. You hand him your wallet with $300 and various other items that you would have. You also hand over your watch worth $500. After this the crook turns and runs from you.

My question is, would you quickly draw your weapon and shoot him in the back?

Can you legally justify shooting him in the back? How about morally?
Based on some posters on GNG, the robber is "retreating." So if you're happy the robber is retreating, don't shoot him in the back. But if want to stop the robber from making good on his escape, you gotta do something more physical than draw and shoot. You have to do something like initiating a chase.
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Last edited by Patchman; 12-27-2014 at 19:51..
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Old 12-27-2014, 20:41   #19
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How much would it cost you in time lost and legal fees? More than $800?
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Old 12-27-2014, 21:15   #20
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Morally? Depends on your beliefs, I guess. I would hope I wouldn't kill anyone over $800 unless my life was in peril. If you doubt me, find someone who has shot and killed another human. See if they want to talk about it. Doubt most of them talk about it.

Legally? No. He's fleeing.

Financially? For $800.00 you're not getting two and a half hours with a good criminal defense lawyer.

Plus your going is going into evidence and you wouldn't want that to happen, would you?
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