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Thread: After the shooting is over and you are in court

  1. #1
    Regular Member mel5051's Avatar
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    This is taken from a post by MitchellCT on DefensiveCarry.com in Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions, post is titled "Told to CC same ammo as local LE!

    "I think these are very gear centered points unworthy of further discussion.

    I think people will insist their gear have a "individuality" factor which, combined with a skewed and poor understanding of, and the lack of ability to apply correctly, the use of force rules they live under, that their weapon, ammunition and other minutia will untimately be inconsequential to the outcome of the situation.

    People SAY they want to know answers to questions like this, yet when professionals like people in the law enforcement field, legal system and firearm professionals offer answers, everyone gets in a snit because their ideas aren't validated, so they end up doing whatever they want to.

    If you are still hung up on handloading your carry ammo, do it.
    If you want to carry a particular round, go for it.
    If you want to install a competition trigger in your carry weapon, I hope it gives you a smile on your face.

    Want to know a secret?

    It's sort of an open secret...but I'll spell it out for you.

    The less "***" factor your gear has, the better.

    If your shooting is "clean" with no "interesting" factors like the amount of rounds fired, entry wounds in the back of the dead guy, no honest, well meaning witnesses (who saw the whole thing) yet interpreted events wrong...doesn't matter what you used.

    However...If you plan for a shooting and the aftermath to go off without a hitch, you are smoking some stuff that the DEA, FDA, CDC, FBI & the White House would like samples of for research.

    While I know this is a very unpopular thing to say, especially if it's being said by someone who has actual experience in dealing with the representation of real defendants in real court before real judges and prosecutors...

    Keep it simple.
    Keep it realistic.
    Keep it relevant.

    Avoid the temptation to get clever.
    Avoid the temptation to assume you know better "just because".
    Avoid the temptation to think that you have a firm understanding of all the factors which will be in play should you need to shoot someone, and that you can play the factors to your advantage while you are a suspect/defendant.

    Sometimes the best answer is the simplest one.

    Factory ammo.
    The weapon kept stock with the exception of sights of your chosing.
    Relevant, realistic, recent training in tactics and law.

    You want to go off on how the prosecutor is out to get you if you use handloads...fine.

    But I'll tell you this, because 24 hours ago, I was sitting in a judge's chambers with the major felony prosecutors discussing my client's fate...

    Ain't ONE person who thinks prosecutors are just looking to screw the people that defend themselves got a clue.

    If it comes to the point a prosecutor is signing a warrant and submitting it to a judge

    THE PERSON WHO WAS 'DEFENDING' THEMSELVES SCREWED UP TO A DEGREE THAT THEY MADE A GUY WHO SEES EVERY NASTY THING THAT NASTY PEOPLE DO, AND PUTS BAD PEOPLE IN JAIL FOR A LIVING BELIEVE THE SHOOTER IS ONE OF THEM"



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    Yeah, you don't have to tell me, I keep things simple, keep things within parameters.

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    McX
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    mel5051 speaketh the truth.

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    duuuuh, simple is all I can handle. :?Ev'r thang else goes right over my little head.

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    mel5051 wrote:
    THE PERSON WHO WAS 'DEFENDING' THEMSELVES SCREWED UP TO A DEGREE THAT THEY MADE A GUY WHO SEES EVERY NASTY THING THAT NASTY PEOPLE DO, AND PUTS BAD PEOPLE IN JAIL FOR A LIVING BELIEVE THE SHOOTER IS ONE OF THEM"


    Well if that were true than we could dispense with the whole trial and just throw people in the klink. After all, they got arrested because they were asking for it.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Tomahawk wrote:
    mel5051 wrote:
    THE PERSON WHO WAS 'DEFENDING' THEMSELVES SCREWED UP TO A DEGREE THAT THEY MADE A GUY WHO SEES EVERY NASTY THING THAT NASTY PEOPLE DO, AND PUTS BAD PEOPLE IN JAIL FOR A LIVING BELIEVE THE SHOOTER IS ONE OF THEM"
    Well if that were true than we could dispense with the whole trial and just throw people in the klink. After all, they got arrested because they were asking for it.
    Just a teeny, tiny bit of sarcasm?

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    I am so sorry for hijacking the thread but figured I'd get some perspective on in court explanations. I have ran through several scenarios in my head and in the "worst case scenario" have placed myself in court in front of a judge and jury of my peers and ran through how I would use certain descriptive words. I plan on taking every self defense class I can get time off for so when my lawyer is defending me he can say "My client has xxx hours of formal instructional firearm training" and "My client positioned himself so that there was the least amount of chance any bystanders would be involved". Just a snippet about what I might do.

    Mick

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    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    Mick,

    Oh, if it were that simple...

    If a self-defense shooting should be so dodgy (or your local DA is such a frothing anti-2A wingnut) that it goes before a court, the "training" issue is just another "damned if you do--damned if you don't" situation...

    If you have minimal training, an aggressive prosecutor will try and pain you as a yahoo, with rudimentary knowledge of the law, and that you are barely capable of handling a butter knife without killing someone.

    If you have 200 hours of formal training, an aggressive prosecutor will try and paint you as a gun-obsessed mall-ninja, and someone who's whole life revolves around the use of firearms, who was just WAITING for the opportunity to pop someone.

    As said in a previous post, if a shooting is questionable enough to get ot a trial, OR if your local LEA and DA are so frothingly anti-2A that they are just LOOKING to make an example of someone for defending themselves lawfully, there is very little you can do in preparation before the fact that is going to absolve your actions, and EVERYTHING you say (or have said or done) CAN AND WILL be used AGAINST you...

    The best thing to do is get a good attorney, and not focus on your life--focus on the BG, and how THEIR actions were so egregious and hostile that you were honestly in fear of an imminent threat against your life, and the safety of your family. If you can establish that you simply had NO OTHER alternative than to use deadly force to protect yourself (or someone else), then you're on the road to a win.

    Very few successful defenses in this sort of case are EVER about how nice, or well trained, or law-abiding the "accused" is. Successful defenses of this type are almost ALWAYS about getting the jury to identify with the "accused", and to convince them that, put in the same situation, they would ALL do the exact same thing--AND to get that jury to KNOW in their heart of hearts that such an action would be undeniably RIGHT, lawful, and righteous. When it comes down to it, a successful defense is a subtle form of mass mind-control--a delightfully sophisticated exercise in counter-propaganda--and THAT is one of the deep, dark secrets of how the "law" really works.

    Anything else you try to bring into the discussion can and will be twisted by a well-versed prosecutor to make you look as bad as they can.

    And remember that "jury of your peers"? Well, the majority of those folks are probably NOT going to be your peers--they will be from all walks of life, all sorts of religious, economic, and political backgrounds. The only thing most of them will have in common with you is that they couldn't avoid being dragged into a jury trial situation...

    Personally, I think it is CRIMINAL that being a lawyer or LEO is an automatic disqualification for jury duty. I think it is CRIMINAL that previous experiences analogous to the defendant is an automatic disqualification. I think that our judicial system is often nothing more than a dick-waving contest for judges and prosecutors, where they already know the outcome and are just using the system to "make an example" of someone they don't like, or to let someone off they feel is entitled to a "pass" because of their social status.

    The concept of a "jury of one's peers" is one of those interesting bits of vestigial legal mumbo jumbo left over from British Common Law that should be SERIOUSLY reconsidered in the US Justice System. It was instated in the British Courts to ensure that "Peers" could only be judged by their "equals", and NEVER by "commoners". It has NOTHING to do with the "common citizens"--it is a fraudulent bit of verbiage left in place to ensure that people who are truly qualified to sit on a jury would be excluded in all cases against "common people", and to guarantee that when "Proper People" are on trial, they could be assured of having a jury loaded in their favor against a "common" complaintant...

    Words have MEANING folks. There is a REASON you need a Doctorate-level education to practice law in the US. The law is so arcane, convoluted, and full of pseudo-mystical classist mumbo-jumbo that the only way you can practice it competently is to gain your education at their deeply-protected "mystery schools". The Judiciary is a modern priesthood, no different that the Druids or the High Priests of Ra in Egypt, and they have their own secret system of understanding, interpretation, and language usage. This is why the "law" very often makes absolutely no sense to non-lawyers.

    The "law" is not a "legal system" in any sense of dispensing real justice, or in the rational, logical, and moral interpretation of right and wrong. It is a religion, and if you want to understand it, you need to approach it like a seminary student, NOT an engineer. There is very little logic, science, or rationale to the "practice" of the "law".

    It is a system entirely outside those concepts, and is fundamentally--like ALL systems of organized religion--a codified system of CONTROL.

    Once you understand THAT lofty principle, the "law" starts to make a LOT more sense...

    (NOTE: With this post, I've probably blow any hopes I ever had of being admitted to a Law School in the future. They HATE it when someone "shows what's behind the curtain"...)
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

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    Well put Dreamer thanks for the input. I can only hope that the more training I get the more character witnesses I can produce that I have had the proper training and can decipher when or when not to use deadly force. I guess it all boils down to when you are about to draw down is it without a doubt in your mind that it would get thrown out of court. Good stuff though thanks again.

    Mick

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    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    It is our cause to dispel the foggy thinking which avoids hard decisions in the delusion that a world of conflict will somehow mysteriously resolve itself into a world of harmony, if we just don't rock the boat or irritate the forces of aggression—and this is hogwash."
    --Barry Goldwater, 1964

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    I have never understood where the "Jury of your peers" comes from. The Constitution only says by an impartial jury of the State and district wherein the crime shall have been committed. Anyone that thinks that most juries are impartial is crazy. Both sides do their best to find people that have already decided on how to vote.

    Or justice system is totally screwed up but I still think that it is the best in the world.

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    At a class taught here in WA(firearms Academy of Seattle) They told us to respond as such:"Officer, I was scared for my/families life, this is a very serious situation and would like my lawyer present before I say anything else."

    Sounded pretty good to me:celebrate

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    Know the wording in thy State's self-defense laws verbatim and do not depart from it if asked!

    Mine says: "...in order to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person..."

    It also says, "...has reasonable grounds to believe, and does believe, that he or another person is in imminent danger of being killed or of receiving great bodily injury..."

    Thus, it's, "Officer, he was about to/did (circle one) use unlawful physical force and we were in imminent danger of being killed/receiving great bodily injury! (circle one)"
    The First protects the Second, and the Second protects the First. Together, they protect the rest of our Bill of Rights and our United States Constitution, and help We the People protect ourselves in the spirit of our Declaration of Independence.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    since9 wrote:
    Know the wording in thy State's self-defense laws verbatim and do not depart from it if asked!

    Mine says: "...in order to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person..."

    It also says, "...has reasonable grounds to believe, and does believe, that he or another person is in imminent danger of being killed or of receiving great bodily injury..."

    Thus, it's, "Officer, he was about to/did (circle one) use unlawful physical force and we were in imminent danger of being killed/receiving great bodily injury! (circle one)"
    Perfect!

    Then say nothing else except, "I wish to speak to my lawyer before saying anything else."

    Anything you say can and will be used against you.............

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    Great advice.

    I'd add this:
    Make friends with your local PD. If you see officers in line at a restaurant introduce yourself and ask some questions. Go on some ride alongs. Some departments even have citizen education classes, attend one. Trust me it is time well spent. If PD is ever called to an incident in which you are involved you want them to say to themselves, "Oh yeah, I know him. Nice guy."
    (just my opinion. I realize it's not practical in every city or situation)

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    valid points, where would one find such high quality training in the richmond area?

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    unicron0827 wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    valid points, where would one find such high quality training in the richmond area?
    Try ProShooter at http://proactiveshooters.com/

    Jim is a VCDL member, former LEO and active on this forum.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

  19. #19
    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Grapeshot wrote:
    unicron0827 wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    valid points, where would one find such high quality training in the richmond area?
    Try ProShooter at http://proactiveshooters.com/

    Jim is a VCDL member, former LEO and active on this forum.

    Yata hey

    Thanks for the plug, Grape!

    We'll be happy to help in any way that we can.

    Jim

    James Reynolds

    NRA Certified Firearms Instructor - Pistol, Shotgun, Home Firearms Safety, Refuse To Be A Victim
    Concealed Firearms Instructor for Virginia, Florida & Utah permits.
    NRA Certified Chief Range Safety Officer
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    Instructor Bio - http://proactiveshooters.com/about-us/

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    ProShooter wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    unicron0827 wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    Dreamer wrote:
    As far as dealing with a legal situation, one of the biggest advantages to extensive training is that it will most likely increase your exposure to, and camaraderie with, 2A-friendly LEO's.

    And having a stable of LEO's to testify for you as character witnesses is usually a VERY good thing in Court...
    In such times, you will find out who your real fiends are. :?

    Yata hey
    valid points, where would one find such high quality training in the richmond area?
    Try ProShooter at http://proactiveshooters.com/

    Jim is a VCDL member, former LEO and active on this forum.

    Yata hey

    Thanks for the plug, Grape!

    We'll be happy to help in any way that we can.

    Jim
    excellent, i recently purchased a new handgun and i know myself and a few friends and roommates are interested in Concealed carry permits as well as some good training and networking in the very near future

  21. #21
    Opt-Out Members BigDave's Avatar
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    Good thread on these issues concerning the aftermath of possibly being charged with a crime, even though you acted appropriately.

    I would like to recommend that who ever can afford it to take Massad Ayoob Class on The Judicious Use of Deadly Force as he has very valuable information in these subjects.

    Issue of carry your own reloads is not recommended on a couple of issues one being that factory ammo especially today have very extensive testing to ensure that hollow point opens properly and for those who reload there is an occasion a misfire will occur.
    Second is that if ammunition is need for forensics there is a high likely hood the prosecution will object as to the reloads are coming from someone that has a vested interest in the out come so it will be considered coming from someone with out clean hands. With factory loads one needs to keep record of the lot numbers as major manufactures keep on hand just for this purpose.

    Issue concerning your carry weapon as to competition trigger jobs that are recommended not for carry or even guns that are named Cobra, or with an implication of being even more deadly can harm ones view from the jury, remember it is a dumbed down jury and any negative comments as being more dangerous and deadly even though we know better can be believed.

    When it comes to training, document all of your training courses and outlines, even mail them to yourself to prove that you knew this prior to the incident at hand. Why because it will be admissible in court because this is what you knew prior to and at the time of the incident. If you were to find this information after the fact or it was made to appear that you just found out you may well not be able to present your past knowledge to the jury as to why you acted the way you did and in a justifiable manner.

    Jurors are our peers and during the course of selection those who have backgrounds in firearms, laws on self defense that could be bias will be eliminated as the Defense and Prosecutors are looking for a well for the lack of a better term a dumbed down jury that does not have preconceived notions on the case..
    Having your training documented you will be given the opportunity to present evidence as to what you knew before and during the incident, thus educating the jury.

    When it comes to what to tell the Officers at the scene or upon reporting an incident, I agree we need to use caution, but there are things that we need to tell them so vital evidence is not lost because of shut up and lawyer up attitudes.
    People will have a tendency to seek out others approval from Police Officers and during this time there is a tendancy to change the story a bit in rationalizing why we did what we did until we get that feeling of support, this is why Officers say little so you will keep talking, so on this issue yes shut up.

    What information I do offer is Who, What, Where and When these are the basic elements of the crime and evidence that needs to be collected for your benefit and for the Police to do their job. Anything more then I will make myself available with in 24 hours after talking to my attorney.

    Remember you are the victim in this, your position in this should be Yes I did shoot him because I was in fear for my life and this is why, not taking the position of shut up and prove it as the criminals do.

    Note that in a Self Defense Claim it is an Affirmative Defense that is saying yes I shot him and was legal to do so because I was in fear of my life, now the State must prove it was not Self Defense beyond a reasonable doubt. (this may vary in the State where it occurred.)


    • Being prepared is to prepare, this is our responsibility.
    • I am not your Mommy or Daddy and do not sugar coat it but I will tell you simply as how I see it, it is up to you on how you will or will not use it.
    • IANAL, all information I present is for your review, do your own homework.

  22. #22
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    unicron0827 wrote:
    excellent, i recently purchased a new handgun and i know myself and a few friends and roommates are interested in Concealed carry permits as well as some good training and networking in the very near future
    Have you and your friends joined VCDL yet? Best Grass Roots organization in the country.
    http://www.vcdl.org/

    At the very least sign up for their free email VaAlert and keep up to date on what is happening around Virginia.

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Grapeshot wrote:
    unicron0827 wrote:
    excellent, i recently purchased a new handgun and i know myself and a few friends and roommates are interested in Concealed carry permits as well as some good training and networking in the very near future
    Have you and your friends joined VCDL yet? Best Grass Roots organization in the country.
    http://www.vcdl.org/

    At the very least sign up for their free email VaAlert and keep up to date on what is happening around Virginia.

    Yata hey
    actually i was just looking at that earlier today & planned on cutting a check myself once i get paid

  24. #24
    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    unicron0827 wrote:
    Grapeshot wrote:
    Have you and your friends joined VCDL yet? Best Grass Roots organization in the country.
    http://www.vcdl.org/

    At the very least sign up for their free email VaAlert and keep up to date on what is happening around Virginia.

    Yata hey
    actually i was just looking at that earlier today & planned on cutting a check myself once i get paid
    Almost forgot - check out our monthly OC dinner on Tues 2/9 at Fuddruckers.
    Would be good to meet you in person.
    http://opencarry.mywowbb.com/forum54/37501.html

    Yata hey
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training.” Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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