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Thread: Use of force

  1. #1
    Regular Member ICBM's Avatar
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    Exclamation Use of force

    Since we talk about carrying styles and OC'ing in general a lot in Indiana, I've noticed a lack in threads about the legalities of use of force.

    First, here is the current (08/29/15) "Use of force" statute for Indiana, along with a definition that I'd want to talk about in this thread.
    I suggest you all read up and stay knowledgeable...

    IC 35-41-3-2
    Use of force to protect person or property
    Sec. 2. (a) In enacting this section, the general assembly finds and
    declares that it is the policy of this state to recognize the unique
    character of a citizen's home and to ensure that a citizen feels secure
    in his or her own home against unlawful intrusion by another
    individual or a public servant. By reaffirming the long standing right
    of a citizen to protect his or her home against unlawful intrusion,
    however, the general assembly does not intend to diminish in any
    way the other robust self defense rights that citizens of this state have
    always enjoyed. Accordingly, the general assembly also finds and
    declares that it is the policy of this state that people have a right to
    defend themselves and third parties from physical harm and crime.
    The purpose of this section is to provide the citizens of this state with
    a lawful means of carrying out this policy.

    (b) As used in this section, "public servant" means a person
    described in IC 35-31.5-2-129 or IC 35-31.5-2-185.
    (c) A person is justified in using reasonable force against any other
    person to protect the person or a third person from what the person
    reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force.
    However, a person:
    (1) is justified in using deadly force; and
    (2) does not have a duty to retreat;
    if the person reasonably believes that that force is necessary to
    prevent serious bodily injury to the person or a third person or the
    commission of a forcible felony. No person in this state shall be
    placed in legal jeopardy of any kind whatsoever for protecting the
    person or a third person by reasonable means necessary.

    (d) A person:
    (1) is justified in using reasonable force, including deadly force,
    against any other person; and
    (2) does not have a duty to retreat;
    if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent
    or terminate the other person's unlawful entry of or attack on the
    person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle.
    (e) With respect to property other than a dwelling, curtilage, or an
    occupied motor vehicle, a person is justified in using reasonable force
    against any other person if the person reasonably believes that the
    force is necessary to immediately prevent or terminate the other person's
    trespass on or criminal interference with property lawfully in the person's
    possession, lawfully in possession of a member of the person's immediate
    family, or belonging to a person whose property the person has authority to protect. However, a person:
    (1) is justified in using deadly force; and
    (2) does not have a duty to retreat;
    only if that force is justified under subsection (c).

    (f) A person is justified in using reasonable force, including
    deadly force, against any other person and does not have a duty to
    retreat if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to
    prevent or stop the other person from hijacking, attempting to hijack,
    or otherwise seizing or attempting to seize unlawful control of an
    aircraft in flight. For purposes of this subsection, an aircraft is
    considered to be in flight while the aircraft is:
    (1) on the ground in Indiana:
    (A) after the doors of the aircraft are closed for takeoff; and
    (B) until the aircraft takes off;
    (2) in the airspace above Indiana; or
    (3) on the ground in Indiana:
    (A) after the aircraft lands; and
    (B) before the doors of the aircraft are opened after landing.
    (g) Notwithstanding subsections (c) through (e), a person is not
    justified in using force if:
    (1) the person is committing or is escaping after the commission
    of a crime;
    (2) the person provokes unlawful action by another person with
    intent to cause bodily injury to the other person; or
    (3) the person has entered into combat with another person or is
    the initial aggressor unless the person withdraws from the
    encounter and communicates to the other person the intent to do
    so and the other person nevertheless continues or threatens to
    continue unlawful action.

    (h) Notwithstanding subsection (f), a person is not justified in
    using force if the person:
    (1) is committing, or is escaping after the commission of, a
    crime;
    (2) provokes unlawful action by another person, with intent to
    cause bodily injury to the other person; or
    (3) continues to combat another person after the other person
    withdraws from the encounter and communicates the other
    person's intent to stop hijacking, attempting to hijack, or
    otherwise seizing or attempting to seize unlawful control of an
    aircraft in flight.
    (i) A person is justified in using reasonable force against a public
    servant if the person reasonably believes the force is necessary to:
    (1) protect the person or a third person from what the person
    reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force;
    (2) prevent or terminate the public servant's unlawful entry of or
    attack on the person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle; or
    (3) prevent or terminate the public servant's unlawful trespass
    on or criminal interference with property lawfully in the
    person's possession, lawfully in possession of a member of the
    person's immediate family, or belonging to a person whose
    property the person has authority to protect.

    (j) Notwithstanding subsection (i), a person is not justified in
    using force against a public servant if:
    (1) the person is committing or is escaping after the commission
    of a crime;
    (2) the person provokes action by the public servant with intent
    to cause bodily injury to the public servant;
    (3) the person has entered into combat with the public servant
    or is the initial aggressor, unless the person withdraws from the
    encounter and communicates to the public servant the intent to
    do so and the public servant nevertheless continues or threatens
    to continue unlawful action; or
    (4) the person reasonably believes the public servant is:
    (A) acting lawfully; or
    (B) engaged in the lawful execution of the public servant's
    official duties.
    (k) A person is not justified in using deadly force against a public
    servant whom the person knows or reasonably should know is a
    public servant unless:
    (1) the person reasonably believes that the public servant is:
    (A) acting unlawfully; or
    (B) not engaged in the execution of the public servant's
    official duties; and
    (2) the force is reasonably necessary to prevent serious bodily
    injury to the person or a third person.

    As added by Acts 1976, P.L.148, SEC.1. Amended by Acts 1977,
    P.L.340, SEC.8; Acts 1979, P.L.297, SEC.1; P.L.59-2002, SEC.1;
    P.L.189-2006, SEC.1; P.L.161-2012, SEC.1; P.L.13-2013, SEC.139.

    IC 35-31.5-2-138
    "Forcible felony"
    Sec. 138. "Forcible felony" means a felony that involves the use
    or threat of force against a human being, or in which there is
    imminent danger of bodily injury to a human being.
    As added by P.L.114-2012, SEC.67.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Now, what I'm curious about is that using deadly force to stop a felony is unlawful, UNLESS it is a "Forcible felony" (See above)...

    (c) A person is justified in using reasonable force against any other
    person to protect the person or a third person from what the person
    reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force.
    However, a person:
    (1) is justified in using deadly force; and
    (2) does not have a duty to retreat;
    if the person reasonably believes that that force is necessary to
    prevent... the commission of a forcible felony.


    That subsection means that if someone merely threatens you with any type of force in any way during a felony, it becomes a "Forcible felony" and you can use deadly force if you reasonably believe that the force is necessary to prevent a felony.
    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Second...
    (d) A person:
    (1) is justified in using reasonable force, including deadly force,
    against any other person; and
    (2) does not have a duty to retreat;
    if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent
    or terminate the other person's unlawful entry of or attack on the
    person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle.


    The law states that you can use deadly force "to prevent
    or terminate the other person's unlawful entry of or attack on the
    person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle."

    IC 35-31.5-2-292
    "Serious bodily injury"
    Sec. 292. "Serious bodily injury" means bodily injury that creates
    a substantial risk of death or that causes:
    (1) serious permanent disfigurement;
    (2) unconsciousness;
    (3) extreme pain;
    (4) permanent or protracted loss or impairment of the function
    of a bodily member or organ; or
    (5) loss of a fetus.


    Note that "Serious bodily injury" includes unconsciousness and extreme pain, which are kinda vague.

    _-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-_-

    Okay, so what other types of crimes are felonies?

    IC 35-42-2-1 Battery

    (b) Except as provided in subsections (c) through (j), a person who knowingly or intentionally:
    (1) touches another person in a rude, insolent, or angry manner;
    or
    (2) in a rude, insolent, or angry manner places any bodily fluid
    or waste on another person;
    commits battery, a Class B misdemeanor.

    (d) The offense described in subsection (b)(1) or (b)(2) is a Level 6 felony if one (1) or more of the following apply:
    (1) The offense results in moderate bodily injury to any other
    person.
    (2) The offense is committed against a public safety official
    while the official is engaged in the official's official duty.
    (3) The offense is committed against a person less than fourteen
    years of age and is committed by a person at least eighteen
    years of age.
    (4) The offense is committed against a person of any age who
    has a mental or physical disability and is committed by a person
    having the care of the person with the mental or physical
    disability, whether the care is assumed voluntarily or because of
    a legal obligation.
    (5) The offense is committed against an endangered adult (as
    Indiana Code 2015
    defined in IC 12-10-3-2).
    (6) The offense is committed against a family or household
    member (as defined in IC 35-31.5-2-128) if the person who
    committed the offense:
    (A) is at least eighteen (18) years of age; and
    (B) committed the offense in the physical presence of a child
    less than sixteen (16) years of age, knowing that the child
    was present and might be able to see or hear the offense

    (f) The offense described in subsection (b)(1) or (b)(2) is a Level 5 felony if one (1) or more of the following apply:
    (1) The offense results in serious bodily injury to another
    person.
    (2) The offense is committed with a deadly weapon.
    (3) The offense results in bodily injury to a pregnant woman if
    the person knew of the pregnancy.
    (4) The person has a previous conviction for battery against the
    same victim.
    (5) The offense results in bodily injury to one (1) or more of the
    following:
    (A) A public safety official while the official is engaged in
    the official's official duties.
    (B) A person less than fourteen (14) years of age if the
    offense is committed by a person at least eighteen (18) years
    of age.
    (C) A person who has a mental or physical disability if the
    offense is committed by an individual having care of the
    person with the disability, regardless of whether the care is
    assumed voluntarily or because of a legal obligation.
    (D) An endangered adult (as defined in IC 12-10-3-2).


    This is only some of the code on Battery. I chose the more common scenarios.

    First, lets look at the first section on when Battery becomes a felony;

    (1) The offense results in moderate bodily injury to any other
    person.


    But, what is "moderate bodily injury"?

    IC 35-31.5-2-204.5
    "Moderate bodily injury"
    Sec. 204.5. "Moderate bodily injury" means any impairment of
    physical condition that includes substantial pain.

    ...and by impairment of a physical condition" they mean;

    "impairment of physical condition occurs when the body part is unable to function as it should for a period of time. For example, a half-inch gash to the head disrupts the skin’s function of protecting the inner body from infection, but slight scrapes and scratches do not impair that function and are therefore not impairment of physical condition."

    ...and "substantial pain" they mean;

    "The State also failed to prove that the victim suffered 'substantial pain' as a result of having hair pulled out of her head. The Court of Appeals notes that substantial pain must be 'ample' or 'considerable' and not merely 'fleeting or inconsequential.' In past cases, evidence of substantial pain includes pain that lasts for an hour and even up to 24 hours. Additionally, saying 'Owie' or similar iterations is not an indication of substantial pain."

    So as it is written, you may use deadly force prevent "Moderate bodily injury," which is actually a lower standard than what they first state, as "serious bodily injury" because it is a "forcible felony."

    The next sections are about minors generally;

    (3) The offense is committed against a person less than fourteen
    years of age and is committed by a person at least eighteen
    years of age.
    (6) The offense is committed against a family or household
    member (as defined in IC 35-31.5-2-128) if the person who
    committed the offense:
    (A) is at least eighteen (18) years of age; and
    (B) committed the offense in the physical presence of a child
    less than sixteen (16) years of age, knowing that the child
    was present and might be able to see or hear the offense


    So basically, An adult hitting someone 13 or younger or an adult hitting a "family or household member" in the presence of a child under 16.
    Remember, this is also forcible felony. Deadly force could apply, if necessary.

    Also, the definition is rather broad...

    IC 35-31.5-2-128
    "Family or household member"
    Sec. 128. (a) An individual is a "family or household member" of
    another person if the individual:
    (1) is a current or former spouse of the other person;
    (2) is dating or has dated the other person;
    (3) is or was engaged in a sexual relationship with the other
    person;
    (4) is related by blood or adoption to the other person;
    (5) is or was related by marriage to the other person;
    (6) has or previously had an established legal relationship:
    (A) as a guardian of the other person;
    Indiana Code 2015
    (B) as a ward of the other person;
    (C) as a custodian of the other person;
    (D) as a foster parent of the other person; or
    (E) in a capacity with respect to the other person similar to
    those listed in clauses (A) through (D); or
    (7) has a child in common with the other person.
    (b) An individual is a "family or household member" of both
    persons to whom subsection (a)(1), (a)(2), (a)(3), (a)(4), (a)(5), (a)(6),
    or (a)(7) applies if the individual is a minor child of one (1) of the
    persons.

    Almost hilariously broad. Pretty much anyone who you've dated, married, banged, or related to by blood, marriage or adoption applies to the statute. No matter how long ago, or your current relationship.

    The last major felony battery section is pretty obvious stuff; use of deadly weapons, pregnant women, strangulation, previous battery victims, and flinging infected bodily fluids.
    Remember Forcible Felonies.

    Criminal confinement is also a felony, defined as ""knowingly or intentionally: (1) confining another person without the other person's consent; or (2) removing another person, by fraud, enticement, force, or threat of force, from one (1) place to another."

    IC 35-42-5-1
    Robbery

    Sec. 1. A person who knowingly or intentionally takes property
    from another person or from the presence of another person:
    (1) by using or threatening the use of force on any person; or
    (2) by putting any person in fear;
    commits robbery, a Level 5 felony.


    Other felonies that are not always "forcible felonies" but often can be.

    IC 35-43-2-1
    Burglary

    Sec. 1. A person who breaks and enters the building or structure
    of another person, with intent to commit a felony or theft in it,
    commits burglary, a Level 5 felony.


    IC 35-43-4-2
    Theft
    Sec. 2. (a) A person who knowingly or intentionally exerts
    unauthorized control over property of another person, with intent to
    deprive the other person of any part of its value or use, commits a level 6 felony if;
    (A) the value of the property is at least seven hundred fifty
    dollars ($750), or;
    (B) the property is a firearm.


    IC 35-45-2-1
    Intimidation
    Sec. 1. (a) A person who communicates a threat to another person,
    with the intent:
    (1) that the other person engage in conduct against the other
    person's will;
    (2) that the other person be placed in fear of retaliation for a
    prior lawful act;
    commits intimidation, a level 6 felony if:
    (A) the threat is to commit a forcible felony;
    (B) the person to whom the threat is communicated:
    (iii) is an employee of a school or school corporation;
    (viii) is an employee of a hospital, church, or religious organization; or
    (ix) is a person that owns a building or structure that is open to the public or is an employee of the person;
    and, except as provided in item (ii), the threat is communicated to the person because of the occupation,
    profession, employment status, or ownership status of the
    person as described in items (i) through (ix) or based on an
    act taken by the person within the scope of the occupation.
    (3) Level 5 felony if: (A) while committing it, the person draws or uses a deadly
    weapon;


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Just remember not to do stupid stuff like this!

    IC 35-47.5-2-2 "Booby trap"
    Sec. 2. "Booby trap" means a device meant to cause death or
    bodily injury by:
    (1) hiding the device; or
    (2) activating the device by trip wires, switches, antidisturbance,
    or other remote means.

    IC 35-47.5-5-10 Deploying a booby trap
    Sec. 10. A person who knowingly or intentionally deploys a
    booby trap commits a Level 6 felony.

    Stay informed!
    Last edited by ICBM; 03-22-2017 at 02:49 AM.

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