Okay, say you're walking along and someone decides to attempt stealing your bag, laptop, bicycle, something of great value. Would it be legal to pull your weapon and load it(but not use), in order to prevent this crime. And, say that the person doesn't have a weapon. 2)
What if a person is verbally assaulting you, approaching you with the intent to physically hurt you, they don't have a weapon. Is it legal to pull your weapon and load it(not use it) to protect yourself? These are the kind of scenario's that I think most people need to know about.
I'm mostly interested in the use of a gun for prevention and protection of or from crime.
I still have more questions...
(Numbered your above scenarios so I can answer below.)
In any real SHTF scenario, you aren't going to have time to think. You are going to act and live with the consequences... which is why mental exercises such as these are an important part of preparing yourself for gun possession. In every training class I've taken on firearm ownership/use, the instructor has said to constantly think about different scenarios and how you would act. This is like muscle memory for your brain. You don't have to think about it when it happens because you've ran a dozen or so similar scenarios ahead of time.
1) If your assailant is unarmed, and all you believe they are trying to do is steal property, then it is likely not legal to use lethal force to prevent the crime. Remember our golden rule: "reasonable" belief of immediate, grave danger of death or great bodily harm.
If your assailant pulls a knife and threatens to kill you if you don't hand over your bag/wallet/laptop/etc, then you would probably be reasonable to fear for your life/health.
2) There's no law against verbal assault. Civilly, you may be held unaccountable for injuring another party if they utter "fighting words", but that's no license to kill.
Even if they make a physical advance toward you, it's probably not legal to kill them, unless you can articulate that you reasonably feared death/great bodily harm. For example, if you're an 80-year-old woman and your attacker was a 250-lb 20-year-old body builder... then you probably have reason to fear death/injury. Remember, in the end the jury will determine what is "reasonable" fear of death/injury.
Further, despite the legal issue, it's probably not in your best interest to introduce a weapon to a fist fight. Introducing a weapon unnecessarily escalates a xxxxxxxx contest
into a life-or-death struggle. While it's possible a fist fight will end in great injury or death, it's much more likely to end in injury/death if you introduce a firearm.
(Disclaimer: I am not an attorney, and none of the above is legal advice. It's all just my opinion, so take it for what it's worth.)