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Thread: justified use of self defense ?

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    justified use of self defense ?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zX-ZuIOJKk

    Man with a gun threatens great bodily harm or death.

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    Activist Member JamesCanby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onus View Post
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zX-ZuIOJKk

    Man with a gun threatens great bodily harm or death.
    Are you seriously suggesting that the LEO's statements give you the right to draw a firearm and shoot him in "self defense?"

    While the officer's comments may be actionable in a civil case or complaint -- and you SHOULD pursue a complaint against him -- the idea that you could shoot him -- or ANYone -- for making that statement is just wrong.

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    Regular Member stealthyeliminator's Avatar
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    Legally, probably not.

    Morally, I'd say, probably the same, because it would seem that he's just blowing smoke.

    Which are you asking about? If you're asking about the legality of using lethal force in a situation such as that one, I'd say that almost certainly lethal force would not be justified based on what can be seen and heard in the video, but if you knew where this video was taken the law could be gandered at anyway.

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    Regular Member Samopal's Avatar
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    No, a person threatening to "break your ******* face" does not just justify the use of force. As JamesCanby said, it's grounds for a complaint, but that's it. Only if the officer continued to escalate the situation and put you in fear of real harm would you be justified in defending yourself.
    Last edited by Samopal; 09-26-2013 at 07:59 PM. Reason: typo
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    I would, as a jurist, make a finding of self defense. Based on the video.

    Just shows the variety of answers one can expect.
    Last edited by davidmcbeth; 09-26-2013 at 09:51 PM.

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    When a man with a gun approaches you and threatens great bodily harm or death it defies common sense to wait until he starts to beat or kill you to defend yourself.

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    Regular Member sudden valley gunner's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    I would, as a jurist, make a finding of self defense. Based on the video.

    Just shows the variety of answers one can expect.
    Me too. Are folks supposed to wait for a guy to actually punch us in the face to defend ourselves? Or are people balking because a costumed state agent made the threat?
    I am not anti Cop I am just pro Citizen.

    U.S. v. Minker, 350 US 179, at page 187
    "Because of what appears to be a lawful command on the surface, many citizens, because
    of their respect for what only appears to be a law, are cunningly coerced into waiving their
    rights, due to ignorance." (Paraphrased)

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    Last edited by Maverick9; 09-27-2013 at 04:10 PM.

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    Activist Member JamesCanby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by onus View Post
    When a man with a gun approaches you and threatens great bodily harm or death it defies common sense to wait until he starts to beat or kill you to defend yourself.
    First, you were dishonest in your original characterization. It wasn't just "a man carrying a gun." It was an on-duty police officer in uniform -- of course he had a gun. The officer's conduct was wrong on several counts and a complaint should be filed, but other than using "fighting words," the officer did not touch you. From the video it is evident that there were several other officers around and had you drawn your firearm "in self defense" I suspect the last thing your camera would have recorded was your death. Admit it -- you were there to bait the officer into this reaction, and he fell for it. Now you come here and present a false scenario, aided and abetted by "the usual cop-bashing suspects," one of which even posted that if he were a juror at your trial he would vote to acquit. Unfortunately, he would never get the chance to acquit because you would have become deceased moments after drawing your firearm.

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    I neither agree, nor disagree with anyone's comments up to this point. Everyone has, and is entitled to, their own opinion. However, I have to ask myself, if the aggressive gentleman had NOT been a uniformed police officer, and simply been a larger, aggressive man, with an openly carried firearm, would any of your opinions change?

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    Activist Member JamesCanby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustJack View Post
    I neither agree, nor disagree with anyone's comments up to this point. Everyone has, and is entitled to, their own opinion. However, I have to ask myself, if the aggressive gentleman had NOT been a uniformed police officer, and simply been a larger, aggressive man, with an openly carried firearm, would any of your opinions change?
    "Fighting words" are just that -- words. Until and unless there was a physical attack or a drawn firearm, and I was completely blameless in instigating that attack (which I posit Onus was NOT), and depending on your location where one may have the duty to retreat ... deadly force is not justified.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCanby View Post
    "Fighting words" are just that -- words. Until and unless there was a physical attack or a drawn firearm, and I was completely blameless in instigating that attack (which I posit Onus was NOT), and depending on your location where one may have the duty to retreat ... deadly force is not justified.
    So when would the person be OK, legally?

    1) When he makes a threat (and its not "fighting words" in this case ... its a threat - they guy has a gun, its a real threat).
    2) When he then touches his gun?
    3) When he begins to draw?
    4) When he fully draws?
    5) When he cocks the gun, if single action
    6) When he points it at him
    7) When he shoots him
    8) After he shoots him
    9) When he is are en-route to a hospital
    10) After he is buried

    Wait until #2 and you may as well be dead ... right?

    If a cop says he is going to kill him and he has the immediate means to do so; I would take him at his word that this is exactly what will occur w/o any intervention. Because I'm a trusting individual.

    This is the thought processes I would bring to bear as a jurist in such a case.
    Last edited by davidmcbeth; 09-27-2013 at 04:30 PM. Reason: engrish

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    Quote Originally Posted by JustJack View Post
    I neither agree, nor disagree with anyone's comments up to this point. Everyone has, and is entitled to, their own opinion. However, I have to ask myself, if the aggressive gentleman had NOT been a uniformed police officer, and simply been a larger, aggressive man, with an openly carried firearm, would any of your opinions change?
    Exactly. +1

    I would give no deference to the fact he was a LEO in a jury room.

  14. #14
    Activist Member JamesCanby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    Exactly. +1

    I would give no deference to the fact he was a LEO in a jury room.
    You're ignoring the fact that there would be no trial. Shoot a cop and the only call would be to the coroner to pick up your remains. Get real, keyboard commando.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCanby View Post
    You're ignoring the fact that there would be no trial. Shoot a cop and the only call would be to the coroner to pick up your remains. Get real, keyboard commando.
    Ha, good post.

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    Quote Originally Posted by onus View Post
    When a man with a gun approaches you and threatens great bodily harm or death it defies common sense to wait until he starts to beat or kill you to defend yourself.
    I would find you not-guilty by way of self-defense if I was a juror, but I'll never be called again I am pretty sure of that.
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sudden valley gunner View Post
    Me too. Are folks supposed to wait for a guy to actually punch us in the face to defend ourselves? Or are people balking because a costumed state agent made the threat?
    Yes, that is what, I believe, is happening.

    If you had done that to me or visa versa, I believe that more people would have said yes, that self-defense was warranted.
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCanby View Post
    "Fighting words" are just that -- words. Until and unless there was a physical attack or a drawn firearm, and I was completely blameless in instigating that attack (which I posit Onus was NOT), and depending on your location where one may have the duty to retreat ... deadly force is not justified.
    It's not 'just words' there was the closing of distance to instigate an attack on the holder of the camera. It was a directly threatening move.

    It is 'just words' IYO if the camera had be snatched, slapped, destroyed, etc? The camera holder was not visibly breaking any laws. Making threats on someone's life, especially whiled armed, is illegal.
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member Medic1210's Avatar
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    So if you beat or shoot the guy, and get arrested for assaulting or killing an officer, just claim you beat him as a person, not as a police officer...


    Joking aside, just a quick personal example of how the officer's threat would be looked at in court. A buddy of mine took his ex wife's new husband to court for several things, one of which was issuing threats. Basically the guy said to my friend, "If you talk to my wife again, I will kill you."

    The judge ruled that the fact he said "If" it couldn't be treated as a valid threat, because it indicated a separate event needed to occur before he would act. Sounds utterly ridiculous, but that is what was ruled.

    Reason I mention all this is, the officer said, "If you take my picture..." It could be ruled it wasn't an actual threat because it indicated something that might happen only if another photo was taken.

    The law can be stupid sometimes.
    Last edited by Medic1210; 09-27-2013 at 05:09 PM.

  20. #20
    Regular Member Freedom1Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by davidmcbeth View Post
    SNIP

    If a cop says he is going to kill him and he has the immediate means to do so; I would take him at his word that this is exactly what will occur w/o any intervention. Because I'm a trusting individual.

    SNIP
    Well, we ARE supposed to trust cops to tell the truth.

    So, as a juror I am supposed to believe that the cops cannot be trusted?
    Provision for free medical attendance and nursing, for clothing, for food, for housing, for the education of children, and a hundred other matters, might with equal propriety be proposed as tending to relieve the employee of mental strain and worry. --- These matters obviously lie outside the orbit of congressional power. (Railroad Retirement Board v Alton Railroad)

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    Regular Member stealthyeliminator's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JustJack View Post
    I neither agree, nor disagree with anyone's comments up to this point. Everyone has, and is entitled to, their own opinion. However, I have to ask myself, if the aggressive gentleman had NOT been a uniformed police officer, and simply been a larger, aggressive man, with an openly carried firearm, would any of your opinions change?
    I think that my opinion has changed, after reading some of the comments here and thinking about it some more.

    I still might think that I might be in the wrong to use lethal force in that situation because I personally probably wouldn't believe that the cop would actually try to break my face. I would likely think he's just blowing smoke and being a jerk. At the most, I'd imagine he might try to cite or arrest me, and in either of those cases I'd have a hard time defending any use of force, even if it was proven to be a false cite or arrest.

    However, I can't say that a perfectly reasonable person wouldn't feel as though their life was legitimately in danger in that situation, and so if I were on a jury voting on a murder charge against the camera bearer and this video were the only evidence, I too would have to find not guilty.

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    I didn't bother to figure out where this took place. Doesn't really matter though--this officer needs to start getting filmed a bunch more, whenever he's out in public places on duty. One complaint on such an incident likely won't get him more than an oral reprimand. He continues to do this, on tape, different story.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCanby View Post
    First, you were dishonest in your original characterization. It wasn't just "a man carrying a gun." It was an on-duty police officer in uniform -- of course he had a gun. The officer's conduct was wrong on several counts and a complaint should be filed, but other than using "fighting words," the officer did not touch you. From the video it is evident that there were several other officers around and had you drawn your firearm "in self defense" I suspect the last thing your camera would have recorded was your death. Admit it -- you were there to bait the officer into this reaction, and he fell for it. Now you come here and present a false scenario, aided and abetted by "the usual cop-bashing suspects," one of which even posted that if he were a juror at your trial he would vote to acquit. Unfortunately, he would never get the chance to acquit because you would have become deceased moments after drawing your firearm.
    Excellent analysis.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JamesCanby View Post
    You're ignoring the fact that there would be no trial. Shoot a cop and the only call would be to the coroner to pick up your remains. Get real, keyboard commando.
    Emphasis mine.

    Astute observation.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Brian D. View Post
    I didn't bother to figure out where this took place. Doesn't really matter though--this officer needs to start getting filmed a bunch more, whenever he's out in public places on duty. One complaint on such an incident likely won't get him more than an oral reprimand. He continues to do this, on tape, different story.
    Filming him is the way to go.

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