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Thread: defending other people beside your love ones.

  1. #1
    Regular Member onestar's Avatar
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    defending other people beside your love ones.

    Does anyone know if the law has changes about defending other. It used to be that in Michigan only you could defend you love ones and no one else.

  2. #2
    Regular Member Ezerharden's Avatar
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    Here's the law I could find:

    780.972 Use of deadly force by individual not engaged in commission of crime; conditions.
    Sec. 2.

    (1) An individual who has not or is not engaged in the commission of a crime at the time he or she uses deadly force may use deadly force against another individual anywhere he or she has the legal right to be with no duty to retreat if either of the following applies:

    (a) The individual honestly and reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the imminent death of or imminent great bodily harm to himself or herself or to another individual.

    (b) The individual honestly and reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the imminent sexual assault of himself or herself or of another individual.

    (2) An individual who has not or is not engaged in the commission of a crime at the time he or she uses force other than deadly force may use force other than deadly force against another individual anywhere he or she has the legal right to be with no duty to retreat if he or she honestly and reasonably believes that the use of that force is necessary to defend himself or herself or another individual from the imminent unlawful use of force by another individual.
    As you can see, it says nothing about loved ones, only the individual themselves or "others".
    Last edited by Ezerharden; 08-02-2013 at 02:16 AM.
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    Regular Member FreeInAZ's Avatar
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    Re: defending other people beside your love ones.

    ^^^ THIS! +1 Ezerharden.
    Last edited by FreeInAZ; 08-02-2013 at 01:57 AM.
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    I've changed my thinking about that very thing. I used to think, if I can help someone I should. But after all the negativity I've gotten around here from the people of Holland, I'd probably not step in it. I figure if they hate my gun that much, then I don't have to protect them with it either. After all the police don't even have an obligation to protect them. I mean look at the Zimmerman case. A clear case of self defense and look what happened. I really don't want that on my plate if at all possible. It really would depend on the situation, I'd like to think if it came down to it, I would help someone that really was in imminent danger. I would want someone to help me or my loved ones. But remember also that even if your intentions are good, even the victims may cause trouble for you. I figure if they want protection, they better get their own gun.

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    Regular Member Raggs's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by casper View Post
    I've changed my thinking about that very thing. I used to think, if I can help someone I should. But after all the negativity I've gotten around here from the people of Holland, I'd probably not step in it. I figure if they hate my gun that much, then I don't have to protect them with it either. After all the police don't even have an obligation to protect them. I mean look at the Zimmerman case. A clear case of self defense and look what happened. I really don't want that on my plate if at all possible. It really would depend on the situation, I'd like to think if it came down to it, I would help someone that really was in imminent danger. I would want someone to help me or my loved ones. But remember also that even if your intentions are good, even the victims may cause trouble for you. I figure if they want protection, they better get their own gun.
    To the first underlined part, It is hard to tell by looking at someone if they are an anti gun person or to what level they are anti gun. To the second there might be a good reason for them not having a gun, I would have no way to know. As to the legal issues that could come up helping someone that way, if we worry to much about that then we need to second guess open carry. see here. I think that this issue is really hard to say what we would do in a situation, but at least we know what the law says about it thanks to Ezerharden
    My reasons to OC
    1. to raise awareness of the legality of open carry in Michigan
    2. To raise awareness that good people carry guns
    3. A deterrent to people so that I won't be targeted
    4. Because it's more comfortable than CC in most situations
    5. Because I can and want to
    6. Because it's perfectly legal
    7. Self defense

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    Yup, you are right. I was generalizing based on past altercations. It's just my discouraged rant. But you have to admit, the way the media goes after people with guns, you have to be very careful. It's sad to think a person even has to consider " what's going to happen to me if I do the right thing and help someone ?" Everyone wants to charge someone with something. I know not all people hate gun, and most welcome them, but like you said how can you tell. It's a big gamble. (People should get their own guns), that was also part of my discouraged rant, sorry. We do know what the law says, but that didn't stop the h$!! GZ went through did it ?
    Last edited by casper; 08-02-2013 at 10:11 AM.

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    Regular Member xmanhockey7's Avatar
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    When did the law, or case law before the SYG and Castle passed in MI, made it illegal to protect a third party that is not a loved one?
    "No state shall convert a liberty to a privilege, license it, and charge a fee therefor.- Murdock vs Pennsylvania 319 US 105

    ...If the state converts a right into a privelege, the citizen can ignore the license and fee and engage in the right... with impunity.
    - Shuttleworth vs City of Birmingham, Alabama 317 US 262

    Where rights secured by the Constitution are involved, there can be no legislation which would abrogate them.
    - Miranda vs Arizona 384 US 436

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    Jesus said we should love all folks...

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    There are few things more noble than defending somebody else's life, especially if it puts your own at risk. One of the reasons I strongly support shall issue and/or constitutional carry, is if I am fighting with somebody for my life, I was lawful gun owners there to help me out. Happened to an officer in my agency who was wrestling with a guy over control of her gun when an armed store clerk center punched that guy in the head with a well timed shot.

    sadly we had another case where an officer was executed (shot in the head repeatedly while lying on the ground). A CCW'er managed to get his gun out and site on target but at that point the suspect's slide had locked back and he didn't feel comfortable shooting the man.

    Under deadly force case law, and especially if he issued a warning first, it would have definitely been legal to have shot that fleeing armed violent felon. Fortunately, he got arrested before he had a chance to shoot anybody else.

    I would assume most CCW'ers care enough about life such that they would defend others with their gun if placed in that situation. And I'm not aware of any jurisdiction that wouldn't consider it lawful deadly force to defend another (vs one's self) with deadly force.

  10. #10
    Regular Member Ezerharden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    There are few things more noble than defending somebody else's life, especially if it puts your own at risk. One of the reasons I strongly support shall issue and/or constitutional carry, is if I am fighting with somebody for my life, I was lawful gun owners there to help me out. Happened to an officer in my agency who was wrestling with a guy over control of her gun when an armed store clerk center punched that guy in the head with a well timed shot.

    sadly we had another case where an officer was executed (shot in the head repeatedly while lying on the ground). A CCW'er managed to get his gun out and site on target but at that point the suspect's slide had locked back and he didn't feel comfortable shooting the man.

    Under deadly force case law, and especially if he issued a warning first, it would have definitely been legal to have shot that fleeing armed violent felon. Fortunately, he got arrested before he had a chance to shoot anybody else.

    I would assume most CCW'ers care enough about life such that they would defend others with their gun if placed in that situation. And I'm not aware of any jurisdiction that wouldn't consider it lawful deadly force to defend another (vs one's self) with deadly force.
    Could you please cite the case law on this? To the best of my knowledge it is NEVER legal to shoot a fleeing felon, unless they are running to another target that may be in danger. But just fleeing, as in running away, not so much.
    Last edited by Ezerharden; 08-03-2013 at 01:32 AM.
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  11. #11
    Regular Member Ezerharden's Avatar
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    I need a campfire to go with all these crickets
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  12. #12
    Michigan Moderator DrTodd's Avatar
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    Ezerharden,

    My guess is that PALO is a LEO...

    Edit to add: strike that, he is a LEO trainer: http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...=1#post1969110

    He may be correct as the law pertains to a LEO. Google "Fleeing felon"

    But, since this is an OC website that most likely has very few LEOs as members, I think you are correct in questioning the statement. In Michigan, if a non-LEO, CPL holder did that, I would hate to see the consequences.





    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    There are few things more noble than defending somebody else's life, especially if it puts your own at risk. One of the reasons I strongly support shall issue and/or constitutional carry, is if I am fighting with somebody for my life, I was lawful gun owners there to help me out. Happened to an officer in my agency who was wrestling with a guy over control of her gun when an armed store clerk center punched that guy in the head with a well timed shot.

    sadly we had another case where an officer was executed (shot in the head repeatedly while lying on the ground). A CCW'er managed to get his gun out and site on target but at that point the suspect's slide had locked back and he didn't feel comfortable shooting the man.

    Under deadly force case law, and especially if he issued a warning first, it would have definitely been legal to have shot that fleeing armed violent felon. Fortunately, he got arrested before he had a chance to shoot anybody else.

    I would assume most CCW'ers care enough about life such that they would defend others with their gun if placed in that situation. And I'm not aware of any jurisdiction that wouldn't consider it lawful deadly force to defend another (vs one's self) with deadly force.
    Last edited by DrTodd; 08-04-2013 at 11:01 PM.
    Giving up our liberties for safety is the one sure way to let the violent among us win.

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    I am referring to the law in WA state which inarguably protects "citizens" as cited

    Quote Originally Posted by DrTodd View Post
    Ezerharden,

    My guess is that PALO is a LEO...

    Edit to add: strike that, he is a LEO trainer: http://forum.opencarry.org/forums/sh...=1#post1969110

    He may be correct as the law pertains to a LEO. Google "Fleeing felon"

    But, since this is an OC website that most likely has very few LEOs as members, I think you are correct in questioning the statement. In Michigan, if a non-LEO, CPL holder did that, I would hate to see the consequences.
    I can't speak for Michigan. I can speak for WA and (also federal guidelines) and it is inarguable (just try it!!! ) that an individual (cop or non-cop) has the right to defend himself OR another person from perceived imminent death or serious bodily injury.

    WA state actually respects GREATER rights for non-cops than cops vis a vis garden variety deadly force. I quote

    "The legislature recognizes that RCW 9A.16.040 establishes a dual standard with respect to the use of deadly force by peace officers and private citizens, and further recognizes that private citizens' permissible use of deadly force under the authority of RCW 9.01.200, 9A.16.020, or 9A.16.050 is not restricted and remains broader than the limitations imposed on peace officers." [1986 c 209 § 3.]"

    "Homicide is also justifiable when committed either:

    (1) In the lawful defense of the slayer, or his or her husband, wife, parent, child, brother, or sister, or of any other person in his or her presence or company, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design on the part of the person slain to commit a felony or to do some great personal injury to the slayer or to any such person, and there is imminent danger of such design being accomplished; or"


    ---9a.16.050

    Note : in lawful defense of the slayer... OR OF ANY OTHER PERSON

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezerharden View Post
    Could you please cite the case law on this? To the best of my knowledge it is NEVER legal to shoot a fleeing felon, unless they are running to another target that may be in danger. But just fleeing, as in running away, not so much.
    Trust PALO to dodge questions.

    I'll help you out.

    A SCOTUS opinion called Tennessee vs Garner from back in the 1970's or 80's is the case usually cited.

    The case arose from the lawsuit by the deceased boy's father. A cop investigated a reported burglary. The teen bolted from the house, started to jump a fence, and the cop shot him in the back, to prevent his escape according to the cop, and killing him.

    SCOTUS pointed out that the punishment for burglary did not include the death penalty. And, restricted shooting fleeing felons to those that are dangerous to the community. See the case for the exacting wording.

    According to my understanding, the common law up until that point authorized shooting all fleeing felons, but that originated in the distant past at a time when there were fewer felonies, and the penalty for most felonies was death. So, the common law is actually the source of the authority in states that have a common law tradition.

    When it comes to fleeing felons, the SCOTUS case restricts lethal force to a certain category of fleeing felon. Some states may have statutes restricting it further. I don't know.
    Last edited by Citizen; 08-04-2013 at 11:28 PM.
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    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

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  15. #15
    Michigan Moderator DrTodd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    I can't speak for Michigan. I can speak for WA and (also federal guidelines) and it is inarguable (just try it!!! ) that an individual (cop or non-cop) has the right to defend himself OR another person from perceived imminent death or serious bodily injury.

    WA state actually respects GREATER rights for non-cops than cops vis a vis garden variety deadly force. I quote

    "The legislature recognizes that RCW 9A.16.040 establishes a dual standard with respect to the use of deadly force by peace officers and private citizens, and further recognizes that private citizens' permissible use of deadly force under the authority of RCW 9.01.200, 9A.16.020, or 9A.16.050 is not restricted and remains broader than the limitations imposed on peace officers." [1986 c 209 § 3.]"

    "Homicide is also justifiable when committed either:

    (1) In the lawful defense of the slayer, or his or her husband, wife, parent, child, brother, or sister, or of any other person in his or her presence or company, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design on the part of the person slain to commit a felony or to do some great personal injury to the slayer or to any such person, and there is imminent danger of such design being accomplished; or"


    ---9a.16.050

    Note : in lawful defense of the slayer... OR OF ANY OTHER PERSON
    Well...since this is the Michigan subforum, WA law doesn't help me much, even though I think they are the only 2 states that term their "license to conceal" a CPL. The similarity stops there.

    Michigan's law can be found here:

    Act 328 of 1931 Chapter XXXIII
    750.200i Unlawful acts; penalties.
    750.200j Additional unlawful acts; penalties.
    750.200k Applicability of § 750.200h to 750.200j; exceptions.
    600.2922b Use of deadly force or other than deadly force by individual in self-defense;
    immunity from civil liability.
    600.2922c Individual sued for using deadly force or force other than deadly force; award of
    attorney fees and costs; conditions
    768.21c Use of deadly force by individual in own dwelling; "dwelling" defined.
    780.971 Short title.
    780.972 Use of deadly force by individual not engaged in commission of crime; conditions.
    780.973 Duty to retreat; effect of act on common law.
    780.974 Right to use deadly force; effect of act on common law.
    780.951 Individual using deadly force or force other than deadly force; presumption; definition


    The most pertinent part for this discussion is whether Michigan law(s) provide for the use of deadly force in the defense of others. The answer to that is YES. However, that defense of others utilizing deadly force is limited to certain beliefs based upon SPECIFIC acts committed by a person against another. Those acts are:

    1)Imminent death of or imminent great bodily harm;
    2)Imminent sexual assault

    As you may notice, no "fleeing felon" provision. In fact, by "fleeing", I would say the threat no longer seems "imminent"

    http://legislature.mi.gov/doc.aspx?mcl-780-972

    780.972 Use of deadly force by individual not engaged in commission of crime; conditions.
    Sec. 2.


    (1) An individual who has not or is not engaged in the commission of a crime at the time he or she uses deadly force may use deadly force against another individual anywhere he or she has the legal right to be with no duty to retreat if either of the following applies:


    (a) The individual honestly and reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the imminent death of or imminent great bodily harm to himself or herself or to another individual.


    (b) The individual honestly and reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the imminent sexual assault of himself or herself or of another individual.


    (2) An individual who has not or is not engaged in the commission of a crime at the time he or she uses force other than deadly force may use force other than deadly force against another individual anywhere he or she has the legal right to be with no duty to retreat if he or she honestly and reasonably believes that the use of that force is necessary to defend himself or herself or another individual from the imminent unlawful use of force by another individual.




    History: 2006, Act 309, Eff. Oct. 1, 2006
    Last edited by DrTodd; 08-04-2013 at 11:42 PM.
    Giving up our liberties for safety is the one sure way to let the violent among us win.

    "Though defensive violence will always be a 'sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." -Saint Augustine

    Disclaimer – I am not a lawyer! Please do not consider anything you read from me to be legal advice.

  16. #16
    Regular Member Ezerharden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    I can't speak for Michigan. I can speak for WA and (also federal guidelines) and it is inarguable (just try it!!! ) that an individual (cop or non-cop) has the right to defend himself OR another person from perceived imminent death or serious bodily injury.

    WA state actually respects GREATER rights for non-cops than cops vis a vis garden variety deadly force. I quote

    "The legislature recognizes that RCW 9A.16.040 establishes a dual standard with respect to the use of deadly force by peace officers and private citizens, and further recognizes that private citizens' permissible use of deadly force under the authority of RCW 9.01.200, 9A.16.020, or 9A.16.050 is not restricted and remains broader than the limitations imposed on peace officers." [1986 c 209 § 3.]"

    "Homicide is also justifiable when committed either:

    (1) In the lawful defense of the slayer, or his or her husband, wife, parent, child, brother, or sister, or of any other person in his or her presence or company, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design on the part of the person slain to commit a felony or to do some great personal injury to the slayer or to any such person, and there is imminent danger of such design being accomplished; or"


    ---9a.16.050

    Note : in lawful defense of the slayer... OR OF ANY OTHER PERSON
    All very interesting if this happened to be a WA forum where WA law was applicable. However WA law has no bearing on MI law and your advice in MI would get someone arrested and likely convicted.

    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Trust PALO to dodge questions.

    I'll help you out.

    A SCOTUS opinion called Tennessee vs Garner from back in the 1970's or 80's is the case usually cited.

    The case arose from the lawsuit by the deceased boy's father. A cop investigated a reported burglary. The teen bolted from the house, started to jump a fence, and the cop shot him in the back, to prevent his escape according to the cop, and killing him.

    SCOTUS pointed out that the punishment for burglary did not include the death penalty. And, restricted shooting fleeing felons to those that are dangerous to the community. See the case for the exacting wording.

    According to my understanding, the common law up until that point authorized shooting all fleeing felons, but that originated in the distant past at a time when there were fewer felonies, and the penalty for most felonies was death. So, the common law is actually the source of the authority in states that have a common law tradition.

    When it comes to fleeing felons, the SCOTUS case restricts lethal force to a certain category of fleeing felon. Some states may have statutes restricting it further. I don't know.
    Thanks for some useful info.
    Last edited by Ezerharden; 08-04-2013 at 11:38 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Trust PALO to dodge questions.

    I'll help you out.

    A SCOTUS opinion called Tennessee vs Garner from back in the 1970's or 80's is the case usually cited.

    The case arose from the lawsuit by the deceased boy's father. A cop investigated a reported burglary. The teen bolted from the house, started to jump a fence, and the cop shot him in the back, to prevent his escape according to the cop, and killing him.

    SCOTUS pointed out that the punishment for burglary did not include the death penalty. And, restricted shooting fleeing felons to those that are dangerous to the community. See the case for the exacting wording.

    According to my understanding, the common law up until that point authorized shooting all fleeing felons, but that originated in the distant past at a time when there were fewer felonies, and the penalty for most felonies was death. So, the common law is actually the source of the authority in states that have a common law tradition.

    When it comes to fleeing felons, the SCOTUS case restricts lethal force to a certain category of fleeing felon. Some states may have statutes restricting it further. I don't know.
    I aint dodging jacksquat. I just got back. I'm on lunch period now, so I'm posting. Your analysis is correct. I have referred to T v. garner before here, several times. It eliminated the garden variety ANY fleeing felon rule.

    Most states, including my own allow officers to shoot a fleeing VIOLENT felon (crime must have involved deadly force or threatened deadly force) as long as they can articulate the person poses further danger. It's especially justifiable if the officer issues a command to stop first and it is ignored. Mercer Island shot a fleeing bank robber in the back as he fleed not too long ago and it was entirely justified by the above doctrine.

    As for civilians shooting fleeing violent felons, most of the law I can find references only allowing officers that right, but there could be some locales where civilians have it too

    Also, generally speaking, civilians must WITNESS the crime of deadly force whereas ofc's can shoot based on probable cause of same.

    cheers

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezerharden View Post
    All very interesting if this happened to be a WA forum where WA law was applicable. However WA law has no bearing on MI law and your advice in MI would get someone arrested and likely convicted.



    Thanks for some useful info.
    You are correct. If i didn't qualify that I was referring to WA case law, that's my bad. I am a firearms instructor in WA which also entails teaching deadly force principles and I thus know WA case law very thoroughly. It's actually detrimental to study OTHER states' deadly force statutes because it just muddies the issue in my mind, and the last thing you want is a muddy mind when you are faced with a deadly force situation.

    Maybe you could cite MI law, though. As a comparison.

    Btw, not only does WA protect the citizen right to use deadly force to protect himself OR ANOTHER PERSON (RCW 9a.16.050), but if he is brought to trial and found not guilty, the jury is polled as to whether they thought the shooting was self defense. If the jury rules thusly, the citizen gets BACK PAY for the entire timke of the trial PLUS lawyer fees etc. reimbursed. This is a powerful disincentive to prosecutors not to charge bogus cases for political reasons (a la zimmerman)

    cheers

  19. #19
    Regular Member Ezerharden's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    You are correct. If i didn't qualify that I was referring to WA case law, that's my bad. I am a firearms instructor in WA which also entails teaching deadly force principles and I thus know WA case law very thoroughly. It's actually detrimental to study OTHER states' deadly force statutes because it just muddies the issue in my mind, and the last thing you want is a muddy mind when you are faced with a deadly force situation.

    Maybe you could cite MI law, though. As a comparison.

    Btw, not only does WA protect the citizen right to use deadly force to protect himself OR ANOTHER PERSON (RCW 9a.16.050), but if he is brought to trial and found not guilty, the jury is polled as to whether they thought the shooting was self defense. If the jury rules thusly, the citizen gets BACK PAY for the entire timke of the trial PLUS lawyer fees etc. reimbursed. This is a powerful disincentive to prosecutors not to charge bogus cases for political reasons (a la zimmerman)

    cheers
    DrTodd has already cited the most relevant statutes, and I am unaware of any case law specific to Michigan on this topic, hence my request for a cite. I was unaware you were citing WA law at the time.
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    Fwiw, a good example of a case here in WA where we would have been justified in shooting a fleeing felon.

    The guy had been "informationed" (kind of like an indictment, but WA generally doesn't use grand juries and thus the charge sheet is an information, not a indictment) for murder. Iow there was strong PC reviewed by a judge that this guy had committed murder.

    We also had reliable (aguilar spinelli (sp?) rule on the informant. Very credible) information that he was threatenin to kill the witness who lived in my jurisdiction.

    We saw the guy and got into a pursuit. He crashed his car and we gave chase on foot. We CLEARLY would have been able to shoot that fleeing felon in the back for the above mentioned reasons - crime of deadly force, specifically murder AND articulable reasons to believe he represented a further danger of deadliness.

    He tripped and we caught up to him and took him into custody. No media report of course, since we didn't shoot him, and for the media, if it bleeds it leads, and if it doesn.t... well. meh. who cares ?

    And btw, when we caught him, he was armed. And with TWO firearms. Fwiw, I always teach trainees and recruits that just because you get a GUN froom a person, that is not evidence he;'s disarmed. He may very well have another and you assume that is the case until you have been able to search him. We get to go home at night, so we don't make such assumptions. Nor should anybody else!@

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ezerharden View Post
    DrTodd has already cited the most relevant statutes, and I am unaware of any case law specific to Michigan on this topic, hence my request for a cite. I was unaware you were citing WA law at the time.
    Yes. And I'm not even remembering which post you are referring to , but if it was me opining on deadly force law, I was mostl likely referencing WA unless I stated otherwise

    cheers

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    Quote Originally Posted by casper View Post
    I've changed my thinking about that very thing. I used to think, if I can help someone I should. But after all the negativity I've gotten around here from the people of Holland, I'd probably not step in it. I figure if they hate my gun that much, then I don't have to protect them with it either.
    I can understand that feeling, when living in an area full of anti-gun libtards. But I know my conscience would eat me up were I to not draw my gun to defend others from a clearly active shooter or a perpetrator beating them to a pulp. I can't speak for others, but if I were in such situation I can't honestly say I would be thinking of anything other than stopping the murderous madness.
    "The principle of self-defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi . . ."--Dr. Martin Luther King Jr

    “He who cannot protect himself or his nearest and dearest or their honor by non-violently facing death, may and ought to do so by violently dealing with the oppressor. He who can do neither of the two is a burden.”--M. K. Gandhi

    "First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, then you win." --M. K. Gandhi

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by DanM View Post
    I can understand that feeling, when living in an area full of anti-gun libtards. But I know my conscience would eat me up were I to not draw my gun to defend others from a clearly active shooter or a perpetrator beating them to a pulp. I can't speak for others, but if I were in such situation I can't honestly say I would be thinking of anything other than stopping the murderous madness.
    Good for you. Nothing more noble than saving somebody else from peril, especially death.

  24. #24
    Michigan Moderator DrTodd's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PALO View Post
    You are correct. If i didn't qualify that I was referring to WA case law, that's my bad. I am a firearms instructor in WA which also entails teaching deadly force principles and I thus know WA case law very thoroughly. It's actually detrimental to study OTHER states' deadly force statutes because it just muddies the issue in my mind, and the last thing you want is a muddy mind when you are faced with a deadly force situation.

    Maybe you could cite MI law, though. As a comparison.

    Btw, not only does WA protect the citizen right to use deadly force to protect himself OR ANOTHER PERSON (RCW 9a.16.050), but if he is brought to trial and found not guilty, the jury is polled as to whether they thought the shooting was self defense. If the jury rules thusly, the citizen gets BACK PAY for the entire timke of the trial PLUS lawyer fees etc. reimbursed. This is a powerful disincentive to prosecutors not to charge bogus cases for political reasons (a la zimmerman)

    cheers
    I posted the cites for the applicable law in my post above.

    As I said, Michigan's Self Defense Act provides that a person is allowed to use deadly force, without the duty to retreat from any place he or she has the right to be if he or she honestly and reasonably believes there exists imminent death, great bodily harm, or sexual assault to self or others.

    Additionally, people acting in self-defense also have a Rebuttable Presumption of Self- Defense which provides substantial immunity from both criminal and civil liability under the laws.

    This legal presumption must be overcome by the prosecutor, who is required to present evidence at each stage of the criminal proceedings, to rebut the presumption that the person did not act within provisions of the Self-Defense Act. Only if the prosecutor has presented enough evidence to rebut the presumption of self defense will the individual using deadly, or less than deadly force, be subject to criminal prosecution. There are limited exceptions given where the law does not apply. Please see the cites in my post above. If none of these specific exceptions apply, then the person is immune from criminal prosecution.

    In addition to immunity from criminal penalties, an individual using force in self-defense or defense of another in accordance with the Act would not be civilly liable for damages caused to the person against whom the force was used nor to anyone else claiming civil damages stemming from the incident. Additionally, the court is required to award actual attorney fees and costs to an individual sued for civil damages if that person is deemed immune from civil liability under the Act.

    How far a particular prosecutor tends to pursue charges against a person using force in self-defense or defense of another varies quite a bit. My county prosecutor tends to not pursue charges against a person using force, even if there is some aspect that seems to be questionable in terms of complying with the act. I, however, live in Kent County. I've been made aware of a prosecutor on the east side of the state who will pursue charges and then apparently drop them after a very lengthy investigation. Those in Michigan know to whom I referring.
    Last edited by DrTodd; 08-05-2013 at 12:34 AM.
    Giving up our liberties for safety is the one sure way to let the violent among us win.

    "Though defensive violence will always be a 'sad necessity' in the eyes of men of principle, it would be still more unfortunate if wrongdoers should dominate just men." -Saint Augustine

    Disclaimer – I am not a lawyer! Please do not consider anything you read from me to be legal advice.

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    Quote Originally Posted by DrTodd View Post
    I posted the cites for the applicable law in my post above.

    As I said, Michigan's Self Defense Act provides that a person is allowed to use deadly force, without the duty to retreat from any place he or she has the right to be if he or she honestly and reasonably believes there exists imminent death, great bodily harm, or sexual assault to self or others.

    People acting in self-defense have a Rebuttable Presumption of Self- Defense which provides substantial immunity from both criminal and civil liability under the laws. When using defensive force against someone, a person is presumed to have held a reasonable fear of imminent death, great bodily harm, or sexual assault, as long as both the following apply:
    (a) The individual against whom deadly force or force other than deadly force is used is in the process of breaking and entering a dwelling or business premises or committing home invasion or has broken and entered a dwelling or business premises or committed home invasion and is still present in the dwelling or business premises, or is unlawfully attempting to remove another individual from a dwelling, business premises, or occupied vehicle against his or her will.
    (b) The individual using deadly force or force other than deadly force honestly and reasonably believes that the individual is engaging in conduct I described above

    This legal presumption must be overcome by the prosecutor, who is required to present evidence at each stage of the criminal proceedings, to rebut the presumption that the person did not act within provisions of the Self-Defense Act. Only if the prosecutor has presented enough evidence to rebut the presumption of self defense will the individual using deadly, or less than deadly force, be subject to criminal prosecution.

    There are exceptions to the presumption created by the Self Defense Act cited above.

    Specifically:
    The person against whom force is used has a legal right to be present in the dwelling or vehicle (such as an owner, lessee or titleholder);
    the person being removed is a child or grandchild or in lawful custody of the person against whom the defensive force was used;
    the person against whom defensive force is used is a police officer engaged in performing official duties; or
    the person using defensive force was engaged in an unlawful activity or using the dwelling or vehicle to further an unlawful activity.

    If none of these specific exceptions apply, then the person is immune from criminal prosecution.

    In addition to immunity from criminal penalties, an individual using force in self-defense or defense of another in accordance with the Act would not be civilly liable for damages caused to the person against whom the force was used nor to anyone else claiming civil damages stemming from the incident. Additionally, the court is required to award actual attorney fees and costs to an individual sued for civil damages if that person is deemed immune from civil liability under the Act.

    How far a particular prosecutor tends to pursue charges against a person using force in self-defense or defense of another varies quite a bit. My county prosecutor tends to not pursue charges against a person using force, even if there is some aspect that seems to be questionable in terms of complying with the act. I, however, live in Kent County. I've been made aware of a persecutor who will pursue charges and then apparently drop them after a very lengthy investigation. Those in Michigan know to whom I referring.
    Thank you. Very informative post. Cheers.

    I still think WA has the best law regarding self defense... money talks. It's such a great disincentive to prosecute a case for political reasons, because nothing puts egg on the state's face faster than having to pay the defendant's backpay and lawyer costs.

    We, as cops have the extra inquiry of a dept. investigation as well as a death inquest hearing (kind of a mini fact finding hearing with citizen jurors who are presented evidence and testimony and then polled with basic questions). It's rare for a citizen to get an inquest done on their shootings but it's mandatory in my jurisdiction for us to get one.

    Of course the most irksome aspect of law enforcement shooting jurisprudence is when the state gets to take two bites at the apple. It's clearly double jeopardy but since they are independent sovereign, the state doesn't see it that way. Imagine going through a state level trial , being found not guilty, and THEN having a whole other federal civil rights criminal trial.

    All I have to say is that no matter how JUSTIFIED you are to shoot somebody, taking a life is an awful thing that will stay with you forever. Always choose to avoid if possible the kinds of situations that could escalate to deadly force.

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