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Thread: Self Defense; Defense of another; Defense of Property

  1. #1
    Regular Member Primus's Avatar
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    Self Defense; Defense of another; Defense of Property

    A person is allowed to act in self-defense. If evidence of self-defense
    is present, the Commonwealth must prove beyond a reasonable doubt that
    the defendant did not act in self-defense. In other words, if you have a
    reasonable doubt whether or not the defendant acted in self-defense, your
    verdict must be not guilty.

    http://www.mass.gov/courts/docs/cour...lf-defense.pdf

    This is 2009 version of Jury Instructions. Alot of good material with cites to relevant case law. Covers "castle doctrine", defense of others, even defense against police for excessive force. Didn't see it posted anywhere else on here. Enjoy

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    Is self-defense a standard defense or an affirmative defense or needs to be eliminated as an element that the state must prove.

    An interesting subject matter.

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    Regular Member OC for ME's Avatar
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    Thanks for the link.

    I. SD:

    Number 5: As I read it a MA citizen does not enjoy the protections of "castle doctrine" given the language of the instructions outside of a "dwelling" such as a private business. No SYG provision MA citizens are outta luck outside the home it seems.

    Number 12: When pigs fly! Yes, I did read the case opinions listed. I especially liked this part:
    Page 601...In such a situation, the disposition of the case depends on the application of the rules pertaining to self-defense. Thus, we conclude that where the officer uses excessive or unnecessary force to subdue the arrestee, regardless of whether the arrest is lawful or unlawful, the arrestee may defend himself by employing such force as reasonably appears to be necessary.

    Page 602...Moreover, once the arrestee knows or reasonably should know that if he desists from using force in self-defense, the officer will cease using force, the arrestee must desist. Otherwise, he will forfeit his defense. (Commonwealth v. Moreira)


    II. Defense of Another: Missing "up to deadly force."

    III. Defense of Property: What if the property is a firearm? Do you not have the justification to use deadly force then? Another reason, in a long list, to not visit MA.
    "I would rather be exposed to the inconveniences attending too much liberty than to those attending too small a degree of it." - Thomas Jefferson.

    "Better that ten guilty persons escape, than that one innocent suffer" - English jurist William Blackstone.
    It is AFAIK original to me. Compromise is failure on the installment plan, particularly when dealing with so intractable an opponent as ignorance. - Nightmare

  4. #4
    Regular Member snatale42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by OC for ME View Post
    Thanks for the link.

    I. SD:

    Number 5: As I read it a MA citizen does not enjoy the protections of "castle doctrine" given the language of the instructions outside of a "dwelling" such as a private business. No SYG provision MA citizens are outta luck outside the home it seems.

    Number 12: When pigs fly! Yes, I did read the case opinions listed. I especially liked this part:

    II. Defense of Another: Missing "up to deadly force."

    III. Defense of Property: What if the property is a firearm? Do you not have the justification to use deadly force then? Another reason, in a long list, to not visit MA.
    If it's a legit self defense shooting, it's a legit self defense shooting. How many people in SYG states claim SYG just to wind up in prison anyways? As long as I wasn't in Boston I wouldn't worry about it.

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