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Thread: Shooting Stats

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    Regular Member JohnM15A's Avatar
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    Shooting Stats

    Newbie here. I'm trying to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of carrying. After reading several posts it appears that the law in VA is fairly loose and one will most likely be charged for defending oneself. If the authorities don't charge you then the BG or his family will most likely sue you. It is obvious that one has to be VERY sure and VERY careful to weigh the tradeoffs to use the weapon. Yes, I know that it is better to be alive and sued then 6' under, I get that!

    Is there any statistics that give self defense events, the charges brought, and any suits?

    I would hate to be in a situation like Zimmerman is in...

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    Reason for Carry

    Remember most firearms defensive encounters involve the mere displaying of a gun and the criminal attempting a robbery simply goes away. The odds of you ever having to actually shoot someone are pretty small. There are a lot of websites documenting that guns are used over 1 million times per year for self defense purposes, usually without a shot having to be fired. Additionally, it is hard to estimate how many more crimes would occur if criminals didn’t know that 50% of households have a firearm; if a gun ban was ever implemented effectively home invasion style robberies would go through the roof.

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    Regular Member wrearick's Avatar
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    I am a newbie too but have been reading alot including books written on Carrying by some famous authors (Assoyd?). Anyway, I don't believe Virginia is unique. I have the impression that (for any incident outside of your home) if you discharge your weapon, you WILL be detained, lose your weapon for a period of time, and should plan on appearing before a jury of your peers who will decide if your actions were justified. The DA can always choose not to press charges but as you note the perp or his family can still sue. Incidents which occur in your home are normally easier on the good guy as far as justified shooting and make it harder for the BG and his family to sue for their pain and loss since the BG's intentions are clearer and less likely to be mis-interpreted or mis construed by you.

    (My poor boy was just minding his own buisness, rifiling through your desk drawers and was surprised by you charging in the room telling him to put his hands up. It was just his instincts that he turned and lunged with that knife. It wasn't even his- I have no idea where it came from.....maybe he found it in your desk drawer....and if you hadn't had such a dangerous weapons just laying around for anyone to pick up, my boy might not be dead. It's your fault because you gave hime the knife. He wouldn't have really used it.....you didn't have to shoot him....when he realized he wasn't in his friends house all he wanted to do was leave.....and YOU shot him!) doesn't really play out well in a civil case.

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    Regular Member WalkingWolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnM15A View Post
    Newbie here. I'm trying to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of carrying. After reading several posts it appears that the law in VA is fairly loose and one will most likely be charged for defending oneself. If the authorities don't charge you then the BG or his family will most likely sue you. It is obvious that one has to be VERY sure and VERY careful to weigh the tradeoffs to use the weapon. Yes, I know that it is better to be alive and sued then 6' under, I get that!

    Is there any statistics that give self defense events, the charges brought, and any suits?

    I would hate to be in a situation like Zimmerman is in...
    Zimmerman is alive, the other option was dead or a vegetable for the rest of his life. If this bothers you maybe you should not carry, or look at other options of self defense, such as pepper spray. Or you could always threaten the perp with dialing 911.

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnM15A View Post
    Newbie here. I'm trying to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of carrying. After reading several posts it appears that the law in VA is fairly loose and one will most likely be charged for defending oneself. If the authorities don't charge you then the BG or his family will most likely sue you. It is obvious that one has to be VERY sure and VERY careful to weigh the tradeoffs to use the weapon. Yes, I know that it is better to be alive and sued then 6' under, I get that!

    Is there any statistics that give self defense events, the charges brought, and any suits?

    I would hate to be in a situation like Zimmerman is in...
    I am not aware that any bran bean counter has ever been excited enough to catalog the items you list. (Damn you, auto-correct!)

    I am not sure what you mean by the law in Virginia being "fairly loose" - with a few exceptions everybody seems to know what the boundaries are and what is or is not a violation of the law. Most BGs/BG's famiies are looking for deep pockets to sue. If you do not have very much, and may end up selling it all off to cover your criminal defense, there is little incentive for the BG/the BG's family to even think about suing you.

    It sure is obvious that one has to be VERY sure and VERY careful to weigh the tradeoffs to use the weapon. That's why we stress over and over the issue of "imminent danger" and how that even differs from "immediate danger".

    To address your concern about the advantages and disadvantages of carrying - the old refrain is based on truth: It is better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it. It applies to carrying a handgun on a daily basis just as it does to having a working spare tire in your trunk, working seat belts and air bags, a fire extinguisher, or home/auto/life insurance. All of those are there because you are betting you will not need them. (If not, then please let me know where you are so I can stay away from you and thus avoid needing theose things even though I do have them)

    As much discomfort as Mr. Zimmerman is going through, his claim is that what he did was necessary so that he could still be alive to experience that discomfort. Eventually we will find out if a judge and jury agree with him or not.

    stay safe.
    Last edited by skidmark; 03-13-2013 at 12:57 PM.
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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    I was told by a legislator that Virginia's contributory negligence laws prevent someone from winning a suit against you if you were legitimately defending yourself from an attack.

    TFred

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    I was told by a legislator that Virginia's contributory negligence laws prevent someone from winning a suit against you if you were legitimately defending yourself from an attack.

    TFred
    Did the legislator provide a cite and volunteer to contribute to the defense of such a civil suit?
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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    Did the legislator provide a cite and volunteer to contribute to the defense of such a civil suit?
    It's common law, which also means case law.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contributory_negligence

    Contributory negligence in common-law jurisdictions is defense to a claim based on negligence, an action in tort. It applies to cases where plaintiffs/claimants have, through their own negligence, contributed to the harm they suffered. For example, a pedestrian crosses a road negligently and is hit by a driver who was driving negligently. Since the pedestrian has contributed to the accident, they cannot sue the driver for damages because the accident would not have occurred if it weren't for the pedestrian's own negligence. Another example of contributory negligence is where a plaintiff voluntarily disregards warnings and assumes a certain level of risk, although accepting reasonable risk while attempting to rescue another person is not considered contributory negligence.
    Contributory negligence is sometimes regarded as unfair because under the doctrine a victim who is at fault to any degree, including only 1% at fault, may be denied compensation entirely, which is known as pure contributory negligence.[1]:85 In the United States, the pure contributory negligence only applies in Alabama, the District of Columbia, Maryland, North Carolina, and Virginia. Indiana applies pure contributory negligence to malpractice cases.
    There is an infamous case, for which I have long ago lost the citation, of a woman who jaywalked across Broad Street near VCU in richmond, getting hit by a car. The upshot of the decision finally rendered by the VASC was that if you do not cross at the crosswalk/intersection you are the cause of the accident and in fact may be sued for any damages to their vehicle by the driver that strikes you. This would also apply to anybody (yes, you, teenagers) walking in the middle of the street who does not get out of the way of an approaching automobile. (Va law says to walk to the left facing traffic if there is no sidewalk. If the sidewalk is on the side of the street you do not want to walk on, use it anyway.)

    stay safe.
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    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JohnM15A View Post
    Newbie here. I'm trying to weigh the advantages and disadvantages of carrying. After reading several posts it appears that the law in VA is fairly loose and one will most likely be charged for defending oneself. If the authorities don't charge you then the BG or his family will most likely sue you. It is obvious that one has to be VERY sure and VERY careful to weigh the tradeoffs to use the weapon. Yes, I know that it is better to be alive and sued then 6' under, I get that!

    Is there any statistics that give self defense events, the charges brought, and any suits?

    I would hate to be in a situation like Zimmerman is in...
    I'm not sure where you got the impression that Virginia laws are "...fairly loose and one will most likely be charged for defending oneself". I would like you to expand upon that one because it seems to go contrary to what I have heard.

    As for, "the BG or his family will most likely sue you", this is also one that appears to be rather rare. Several years ago, I attended my third iteration of user's seminar on Virginia laws and the use of deadly force and after it was over, I approached the commonwealth's attorney in Loudoun County and a man running for sheriff in that county and asked how common was it for a BG (if he survived) and/or his family to sue a victim who used deadly force in his defense and it was determined that said use of deadly force was excusable. They both answered that it was extremely rare in the commonwealth and the attorney commented that he couldn't recall any such cases.

    Now granted this was in Loudoun County and who's to say what occurs in Chesterfield or Henrico or any of the 95 counties in the state. But the fact that neither of these men could come up with any such cases told me something.

    We do have a pretty darned good system here and it is getting better as VCDL works their collective butts of in Richmond to see to what's right.
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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    It's common law, which also means case law.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Contributory_negligence



    There is an infamous case, for which I have long ago lost the citation, of a woman who jaywalked across Broad Street near VCU in richmond, getting hit by a car. The upshot of the decision finally rendered by the VASC was that if you do not cross at the crosswalk/intersection you are the cause of the accident and in fact may be sued for any damages to their vehicle by the driver that strikes you. This would also apply to anybody (yes, you, teenagers) walking in the middle of the street who does not get out of the way of an approaching automobile. (Va law says to walk to the left facing traffic if there is no sidewalk. If the sidewalk is on the side of the street you do not want to walk on, use it anyway.)

    stay safe.
    Thanks for posting this. I have heard of a number of cases of pedestrians being hit when walking outside of marked crosswalks and the driver not being charged and this is the way it should be.... not like California. The pedestrian can easily put drivers in serious jeopardy by their actions and I have seen examples of this, also a number of times.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    I was told by a legislator that Virginia's contributory negligence laws prevent someone from winning a suit against you if you were legitimately defending yourself from an attack.

    TFred
    I'm going to bet that a plaintiff's attorney who is attempting to sue a victim who used deadly force in their defense and was found to have acted properly in doing so, is going to have a pretty hard time winning such a suit for his client BG and/or the BG's family. Not impossible, but I would think difficult and not likely to win.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SouthernBoy View Post
    I'm going to bet that a plaintiff's attorney who is attempting to sue a victim who used deadly force in their defense and was found to have acted properly in doing so, is going to have a pretty hard time winning such a suit for his client BG and/or the BG's family. Not impossible, but I would think difficult and not likely to win.
    At the risk of repeating myself, see post #8 above.

    Sure, plaintiff's attorney can bring the law suit if they are willing to risk sanctions for failing to exercise due diligence in complying with the canons of law http://home.comcast.net/~styx.cml-ls...urIssues07.htm - especially #s 1, 5, 7, and 9. The common law (and case law) in Virginia precluding a plaintiff from recovering if they are in any way at all contributory to the cause of damages The defendent could turn around and counter-sue both plaintiff and his attorney for frivilous litigation. Even better, the defendent could go to a Magistrate and swear out a warrant against the attorney for committing the crime of barratry - which I will let you Goole on your own. (I'll give you a hint, just so nobody comes in screaming for a citation: § 18.2-45x through § 18.2-45y.)
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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    Don't forget champerty, and don't forget maintenance when barratry mentioned

    Support EFF.org.
    Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), a digital free speech group based in San Francisco, hit Righthaven and Stephens Media with allegations of barratry (the alleged improper incitement of litigation); and champerty (an allegedly improper relationship between one funding and one pursuing a lawsuit). http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2010...t-lawsuit-cam/

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    At the risk of repeating myself, see post #8 above.

    Sure, plaintiff's attorney can bring the law suit if they are willing to risk sanctions for failing to exercise due diligence in complying with the canons of law http://home.comcast.net/~styx.cml-ls...urIssues07.htm - especially #s 1, 5, 7, and 9. The common law (and case law) in Virginia precluding a plaintiff from recovering if they are in any way at all contributory to the cause of damages The defendent could turn around and counter-sue both plaintiff and his attorney for frivilous litigation. Even better, the defendent could go to a Magistrate and swear out a warrant against the attorney for committing the crime of barratry - which I will let you Goole on your own. (I'll give you a hint, just so nobody comes in screaming for a citation: § 18.2-45x through § 18.2-45y.)
    Yes I read post #8 and found it quite informative and commented as such. This has been a valuable thread in my opinion as it has helped to dispel some questions and disparities.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

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    Regular Member JohnM15A's Avatar
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    Wrong House


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    The law in this area should be clear and easily understood ... the Napoleonic code does this very nicely: on someone's land .. he can shoot you anytime ... clear and easily understood , even for a guy with a BAC of 0.30

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    Regular Member SouthernBoy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    The law in this area should be clear and easily understood ... the Napoleonic code does this very nicely: on someone's land .. he can shoot you anytime ... clear and easily understood , even for a guy with a BAC of 0.30
    The problem with this is it makes a distinction between being on one's own property and being out in the public environment. I'd rather not have this distinction if faced with an extreme encounter. I would rather be comfortable in the knowledge that if I perceive that my well being, or that of someone else, is in imminent danger of serious bodily harm or worse, I can use whatever force is necessary to repel my attacker(s), up to and including deadly force. The chance that I may be in my home when something like this goes down, to me means that I am trapped and therefore already at a possible disadvantage. Yes it's my home and yes, different rules do apply as well they should. But the first order of business, at home or otherwise, is your well being (and that of others if present) regardless of where you may happen to be.
    Last edited by SouthernBoy; 03-19-2013 at 07:46 AM.
    In the final seconds of your life, just before your killer is about to dispatch you to that great eternal darkness, what would you rather have in your hand? A cell phone or a gun?

    Si vis pacem, para bellum.

    America First!

  18. #18
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    The law in this area should be clear and easily understood ... the Napoleonic code does this very nicely: on someone's land .. he can shoot you anytime ... clear and easily understood , even for a guy with a BAC of 0.30
    The Napoleonic Code in Virginia? Come, come now - Old English law is the standard here.....more or less
    Last edited by Grapeshot; 03-19-2013 at 11:11 AM.
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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    The Napoleonic Code in Virginia? Come, come now - Old English law is the standard here.....more or less
    Well, actually English Common Law, but why pick nits.

    And it's the same in davidmcbeth's beloved Connecticutt, whether or not he wants to admit it. http://www.lonang.com/exlibris/misc/1798-olc.htm

    Strange that davidmcbeth believes in guilty until proved innocent (the heart of the Napolianic Code) yet rails on so about freedom and the Constitution. I'd be willing to chip in a few bucks so he could move to Louisiana where the Napolionic Code still lives. (No, wait! I've got friends who live there.)

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    Strange that davidmcbeth believes in guilty until proved innocent (the heart of the Napolianic Code) .
    The Napoleanic Code is a civil code. In US states' civil court one may be required to maintain innocence by a preponderance of evidence, a standard of proof much below beyond reasonalble doubt of criminal court.

    The Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen, Déclaration des droits de l'homme et du citoyen of 1789 predated the civil code of 1804 and formalized the natural rights embodied in our Declaration of Independence, Constitution and Bill of Rights.

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