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Thread: Duty to Retreat

  1. #1
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    In my Concealed Carry course it was explained to me that we as a citizen must retreat before using deadly force if retreat is possible except.

    Exception A.
    there is no duty to retreat before using deadly force if the assault threatens imminent death or great bodily harm- a murderous or felonious assault or sexual assault.

    So my interpretation is that if someone comes at me out at say a party that is not my legal place of residence with a knife and is within say 2-5ft and pulls the knife on me gesturing as if to put it in to my stomach I have no duty to retreat because it would be reasonable to assume that i could be killed or sustain serious bodily harm and because I was not the Aggressor or Instigator and I am not under the influence of any mind altering substances.

    Am I correct based on NC law in accordance to the exceptions to the duty to retreat law?

    Exception B. No duty to retreat if you are in your lawful residence I get that.

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    If someone comes at me with a knife I'm not going to wait for them to get within 2-5 ft I'm going to assume long before then they intened to do me serious bodily harm.

    At 2 to 5 feet you will never clear leather in time before he stabs you probably multiple times.

    Even if you already have it drawn and fire right at 2-5 feet he will probably still be able to cover that tiny distance.

    Look at 7 yards. That's 21 feet and the average man could rush you and stab you before you ever got your weapon to bear on him.

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    reread the question I understand your point but please read again.

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    Seems like a reasonable person would assume he was about to cause severe bodily harm or death. But you have to convince a grand jury of that.

    If I was on that jury panel there would be no question in my mind that he intended to cause you harm.

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    I actually had this happen to me 1 reason why I wanted to carry a weapon. I was outside a bar picking a couple of my fraternity brothers up when a rival fraternity member and a person that I did not have a good relationship walked up to me. He approached me with that im your friend cause im drunk ect. It made me loosen my guard just a bit and all the sudden i knew there was a 6in bladed knife facing my stomach and he communicated that he could stab me right there and i couldn't do @#$%.

    It just made me wonder if I had my gun would I by law have to retreat or could I have shot him at that time.

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    IMO no. At that point he has pulled a deadly weapon and in my mind threatened to use it. Him saying "I'm could stab you and you couldn't do anything about it" is to me communicating a threat to my life.

    Granted if you did pull your firearm it would probably be a loose loose as he would most definatly be able to stab you before you were able to fire but you could probably live though it he probalby wouldn't live though multiple slugs center mass area.

    IMO a person that has a weapon and is coming at me saying "IM GOING TO KILL YOU I"M GOING TO ILL YOU" is a threat to my life at that point and that threat is going to stop.

    But then again IANAL.

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    Yeh and then if I was stabbed the jury would have no question in agreeing with me I would assume but my real question is do i have the duty to retreat.

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    burninsteeda04 wrote:
    Yeh and then if I was stabbed the jury would have no question in agreeing with me I would assume but my real question is do i have the duty to retreat.
    From this interpertation......no in my opinion.

    The only way to know 100 percent for sure is to go ask the same question to your lawyer.

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    Can anybody cite a statute or court opinion for this reported duty to retreat?
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  10. #10
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    does anyone eles want to put some of there 2 cents in.

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    burninsteeda04 wrote:
    does anyone eles want to put some of there 2 cents in.

    Here is what a quick search of the NC legislature's website turned up:


    (Hmmm. For some reason copied-and-pasted text won't stay pasted when the "send" button is clicked.)



    Statute text here:

    http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/enactedl...s_14-51.1.html

    Legislature statute search here:

    http://www.ncga.state.nc.us/gascript...s/Statutes.asp



    The first and second paragraph of the OP are contradictory. First there isa duty to retreat if possible before using deadly force. Yet, second, there is no duty to retreat under the only circumstances that would generally authorize deadly force.

    Can anyone cite a legal source for aduty to retreat in NC?




    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  12. #12
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    Citizen wrote:
    burninsteeda04 wrote:
    does anyone eles want to put some of there 2 cents in.

    Can anyone cite a legal source for aduty to retreat in NC?




    I can. Having practiced law in North Carolina for over 25 years now, most of which have been spent in the district, superior, and appellate courts of this state, here is what the law is in North Carolina.

    In State v. Stevenson, 81 N.C. App. 409, a 1986 case out of Guilford County, the Court applies the ruleas follows: The duty to retreat requires a victim of an assault to retreat to the wall before using deadly force in self-defense. North Carolina recognizes the so-called castle doctrine as an exception to the retreat rule. A person is not obliged to retreat when assaulted while in his or her dwelling house or within the curtilage thereof, whether the assailant be an intruder or another lawful occupant of the premises.

    Neither permanency of residence nor a leasehold interest in a premises is required before a person is legally justified in standing her ground, rather than retreating before using deadly force in self-defense. One must show only that she is a member of a household, however temporarily, and that she possesses an intent to reside in that particular place at the time of the attack.

    Although this case is about 20 years old now, it still remains good law. Actually, in 2004 the appellate court overturned a manslaughter verdict in State v. Everett, and remandedthe case because theJudge failed to give an instruction on the duty to retreat in one's home, thus emphasizing the fact that you just don't have to.

    So, that being said, if you are out in public, you must retreat prior to using deadly force. If the force being used against you is, say a bottle or a brick, you'd better retreat, or be ready to face a Jury that may consider neither of those objects "deadly" when used against you. In other words, if you escalate the force to deadly force, you can be held in the wrong. But, to stay on topic, if you are in your own home, or where you reside, permanently or temporarily, you can use deadly force to protect yourself.


    I also should give this as a caveat: if someone breaks into your home, for example at night, they are downstairs and you are upstairs, you don't know if they have a gun or not, and you've not been threatened "yet", can you get your gun, go downstairs and shoot them? If you do that, how were you "assaulted" in your home? That is what the law requires. If the guy was downstairs, you're upstairs, you don't even know if he's armed. I will tell you in the last 20 years or soI've seen more times than I can count on both hands and fingers people being charged with manslaughter on these exact facts.

    Morale of the story, do not take the fact there is no duty to retreat in your own home to mean you can just shoot anyone who comes in without ramifications. Remember, you must be assaulted in some way first. Imminent apprehension of bodily harm or death. That is what an assault is.

  13. #13
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    rangerdavid wrote:
    Citizen wrote:
    Can anyone cite a legal source for aduty to retreat in NC?
    I can. Having practiced law in North Carolina for over 25 years now, most of which have been spent in the district, superior, and appellate courts of this state, here is what the law is in North Carolina.

    In State v. Stevenson, 81 N.C. App. 409, a 1986 case out of Guilford County, the Court applies the ruleas follows: The duty to retreat requires a victim of an assault to retreat to the wall before using deadly force in self-defense. North Carolina recognizes the so-called castle doctrine as an exception to the retreat rule. A person is not obliged to retreat when assaulted while in his or her dwelling house or within the curtilage thereof, whether the assailant be an intruder or another lawful occupant of the premises.

    Neither permanency of residence nor a leasehold interest in a premises is required before a person is legally justified in standing her ground, rather than retreating before using deadly force in self-defense. One must show only that she is a member of a household, however temporarily, and that she possesses an intent to reside in that particular place at the time of the attack.

    Although this case is about 20 years old now, it still remains good law. Actually, in 2004 the appellate court overturned a manslaughter verdict in State v. Everett, and remandedthe case because theJudge failed to give an instruction on the duty to retreat in one's home, thus emphasizing the fact that you just don't have to.

    So, that being said, if you are out in public, you must retreat prior to using deadly force. If the force being used against you is, say a bottle or a brick, you'd better retreat, or be ready to face a Jury that may consider neither of those objects "deadly" when used against you. In other words, if you escalate the force to deadly force, you can be held in the wrong. But, to stay on topic, if you are in your own home, or where you reside, permanently or temporarily, you can use deadly force to protect yourself.
    THANK YOU!!!!
    I'll make you an offer: I will argue and fight for all of your rights, if you will do the same for me. That is the only way freedom can work. We have to respect all rights, all the time--and strive to win the rights of the other guy as much as for ourselves.

    If I am equal to another, how can I legitimately govern him without his express individual consent?

    There is no human being on earth I hate so much I would actually vote to inflict government upon him.

  14. #14
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    all I have to say is thank you for the info your a great asset to this group

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