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Thread: Did you hear about the Richmond Denny's? Use of force question.

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    Campaign Veteran T Dubya's Avatar
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    Did you hear about the Richmond Denny's? Use of force question.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RjViFm1h0V8

    What kind of force do you think the victim could use?

    What kind of force could a good samaritan use?

  2. #2
    Regular Member Dreamer's Avatar
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    This is what Bear-strength pepper spray is for...
    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."
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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    We don't know how the conflict started, so it is hard to say.

    My first response as a bystander would have been to hit one of the attackers with a chair, hard. Then I would stand so they could see I was packing.

    First rule of stopping a fight(or keeping one from getting started) is to let everyone know you are willing to take it really far really quick. You don't have to be a badass fighter against most opponents.

    My experience to stop a fight from occurring (obviously when not OCing) is to make them think you are willing to go way too far over way too little. Also give them an 'out' so they can save face. Saying "hey **** we're sorry already, we'll leave you be, alright? My bad." If you don't think that is going to work on it's own, then go ahead and say it while flicking out your blade.

    Of course there are severe legal implications with all this, and if you misread your opponent(s) it may escalate the situation. This is all moot now that I OC, because people don't seem to wanna **** with me. It's much easier.

    Not that I go looking for fights. The whole point of this is to avoid fights.
    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-19-2010 at 11:37 PM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
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    Regular Member MSC 45ACP's Avatar
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    I believe the victim and a Good Sam. could use deadly force. The victim is clearly in fear of great physical injury or death by at LEAST 2 attackers AND the fact someone is taping the video "as a hobby", making the videographer (by his own monologue) an accessory to the attack. This would also be an IDEAL use of an LTL (less-than-lethal) weapon like an ASP or OC spray. Taking a shot into this fight could easily result in the victim getting shot, too. Either from over-penetration or from the dynamics of the attack itself.

    I'd have to watch it again, but did the "victim" start the fight or say something to antagonize the attackers or was it completely unprovoked? That would also have some impact on the "righteousness" of someone using deadly force. Much less of a problem is OC (Pepper Spray) were used to just hose down the attackers, even though the "victim" would also get a dose. The use of OC does bring another problem to the situation: When an LEO uses it, he immediately 'cuffs the BG and THEN provides First Aid to the BG. Dunno if a citizen can go around handcuffing someone he just sprayed with OC. That brings us into uncharted/unknown territory for a citizen victim or Good Samaritan.

    I look forward to seeing everyone else's "take" on this one. Very good subject for a "What would you do..." conversation. Guranteed to provide hours of entertainment / education...
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    Looks to me like there may be escalation on both sides, bad news in a Virginia court for both parties. If I am a witness to this I am certainly not going to get involved, unless one party becomes incapacitated such as unconcious, and the others continue to beat on him such that I fear for his life or serious harm, then maybe become involved. The little guy gets shoved, and then he throws the first punch. Is the shove sufficient to respond with deadly force? Maybe. But the little guy throwing the first punch to the head is very likely deadly force. Without knowing the words said, hard to say if the little guy escalated, but the bigger guys certainly seemed to escalate.
    Last edited by Jonesy; 08-19-2010 at 11:38 PM.

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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreamer View Post
    This is what Bear-strength pepper spray is for...
    Probably a much better option than mine! My only concern with integrating it into my daily carry is that, If I ever have to use lethal force, I don't want to be questioned about why I didn't try my pepper spray first.

    Something I've been meaning to ask people about.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
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    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    Looks to me like there may be escalation on both sides, bad news in a Virginia court for both parties. If I am a witness to this I am certainly not going to get involved, unless one party becomes incapacitated such as unconcious, and the others continue to beat on him such that I fear for his life or serious harm, then maybe become involved. The little guy gets shoved, and then he throws the first punch. Is the shove sufficient to respond with deadly force? Maybe. But the little guy throwing the first punch to the head is very likely deadly force. Without knowing the words said, hard to say if the little guy escalated, but the bigger guys certainly seemed to escalate.
    ahh, I disagree this was lethal, OR escalation. IT IS AN ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE TO BEING SHOVED DOWN INTO A CORNER.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
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    Quote Originally Posted by simmonsjoe View Post
    ahh, I disagree this was lethal, OR escalation. IT IS AN ACCEPTABLE RESPONSE TO BEING SHOVED DOWN INTO A CORNER.
    The first punch thrown by the little guy may be excused as self defense, but I believe in Virginia a punch to the head is lethal force. Now if the little guy escalated, such as verbal escalation or other acts before throwing the punch, then his use of deadly force may not be excused, as the judge will deny use of the defense due to escalation. But it is hard to tell from the video if the little guy escalated. My point being the little guy may have escalted before the punch was thrown, in which case he is in deep legally. The cases I have read on deadly force with fights show Virginia is very tough on being without fault before you can use self defense.
    Last edited by Jonesy; 08-20-2010 at 12:10 AM.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    The first punch thrown by the little guy may be excused as self defense, but I believe in Virginia a punch to the head is lethal force.
    Flag.....
    Cite?

    If that was true every country bar west of the Blue Ridge would get emptied by midnight on Saturday nights.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by MSC 45ACP View Post
    I believe the victim and a Good Sam. could use deadly force. The victim is clearly in fear of great physical injury or death by at LEAST 2 attackers AND the fact someone is taping the video "as a hobby", making the videographer (by his own monologue) an accessory to the attack. This would also be an IDEAL use of an LTL (less-than-lethal) weapon like an ASP or OC spray. Taking a shot into this fight could easily result in the victim getting shot, too. Either from over-penetration or from the dynamics of the attack itself.

    I'd have to watch it again, but did the "victim" start the fight or say something to antagonize the attackers or was it completely unprovoked? That would also have some impact on the "righteousness" of someone using deadly force. Much less of a problem is OC (Pepper Spray) were used to just hose down the attackers, even though the "victim" would also get a dose. The use of OC does bring another problem to the situation: When an LEO uses it, he immediately 'cuffs the BG and THEN provides First Aid to the BG. Dunno if a citizen can go around handcuffing someone he just sprayed with OC. That brings us into uncharted/unknown territory for a citizen victim or Good Samaritan.

    I look forward to seeing everyone else's "take" on this one. Very good subject for a "What would you do..." conversation. Guranteed to provide hours of entertainment / education...
    A citizen can make an arrest and handcuff on a Misdemeanor Mike. It has to be a breech of the peace and this obviousely is.

    My question is and I guess the red in my neck is showing....why?
    It's a simple fight. Not deadly force or anything close. Just a couple of people settling an argument and wouldn't be any of my business.

    Granted this was set up for a video, but still none of my concern. Let them fight it out.

  11. #11
    Regular Member simmonsjoe's Avatar
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    Because the victims were clearly cornered, and then when the little guy tried to leave he was shoved to the ground.

    that is NOT a fight, as they were not mutual combatants. Whether they had any guilt in starting the conflict I don't know, but at least one attempted to retreat.
    Last edited by simmonsjoe; 08-20-2010 at 01:39 AM.
    illegal ≠ immoral legal ≠ moral
    [SIZE=1]"I never submitted the whole system of my opinions to the creed of any party of men whatever in religion, in philosophy, in politics, or in anything else where I was capable of thinking for myself. "Such an addiction is the last degradation of a free and moral agent." - Thomas Jefferson
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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    A citizen can make an arrest and handcuff on a Misdemeanor Mike. It has to be a breech of the peace and this obviousely is.

    My question is and I guess the red in my neck is showing....why?
    It's a simple fight. Not deadly force or anything close. Just a couple of people settling an argument and wouldn't be any of my business.

    Granted this was set up for a video, but still none of my concern. Let them fight it out.
    Yeah, pretty much. Mutual idiocy it would seem, so why get yourself in a potential boatload of trouble for intervening, depending on degree, when you don't know who said she said he said what in the first place and who is more right about who's mom doing what.

    It didn't look like he tried to leave to me and then was shoved. It looked like he said something then got shoved for what he said.
    Last edited by Curtis; 08-20-2010 at 01:42 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by T Dubya View Post
    SNIP What kind of force do you think the victim could use?
    Reasonable force to repel the assault, I should think.

    However, its was too heated before the first punch was thrown. Once the voices got well raised and the animated gestures got started, he needed to start backing away or doing something else to de-escalate. He could probably use a short class in pre-assault behavior cues, too.

    A few moments before the first punch, he actually seemed to take a defiant posture. That wasn't too bright with two guys that combined weighed three times him.

    He was almost asking for it, even if he didn't say something to push the first-puncher over the edge. It is almost too predictable that this could escalate into a fight. Or, rather one never knows enough about a stranger to know that he won't escalate into a fight.

    I probably would have stayed out of it. Made myself a good witness.

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Oh the memories....

    When I was a Deputy, I worked off duty at this Denny's. In fact, I'm the one who worked out the contract for us to be able to work there. We worked Friday and Saturday nights and I only had to make one arrest the whole time that I was there (some college kid who brought Mary Jane to breakfast).

    Was this fight recent? Looks like a big industrial sized can of pepper spray would come in handy here.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Citizen View Post
    Reasonable force to repel the assault, I should think.

    However, its was too heated before the first punch was thrown. Once the voices got well raised and the animated gestures got started, he needed to start backing away or doing something else to de-escalate. He could probably use a short class in pre-assault behavior cues, too.

    A few moments before the first punch, he actually seemed to take a defiant posture. That wasn't too bright with two guys that combined weighed three times him.

    He was almost asking for it, even if he didn't say something to push the first-puncher over the edge. It is almost too predictable that this could escalate into a fight. Or, rather one never knows enough about a stranger to know that he won't escalate into a fight.

    I probably would have stayed out of it. Made myself a good witness.
    Agreed. You better be damn sure the one who you rush to assist was not at fault in bringing about the altercation. See :
    "[A] person asserting a claim of defense of others may do so only where the person to whose aid he or she went would have been legally entitled to defend himself or herself." Foster, 13 Va.App. at 385, 412 S.E.2d at 201 (citing with approval 40 Am. Jur.2d Homicide § 171 (1968)). Thus, one may be justified in using deadly force to defend another person where he or she reasonably believes that the person defended faces an imminent threat of serious bodily harm or death and that such person was not at fault in bringing about the necessity to use the deadly force. See Foster, 13 Va.App. at 385-86, 412 S.E.2d at 201-02;

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    What kind of force do you think the victim could use?
    As we are unaware of whether or not the victim (the guy who was shoved) was in reasonable fear of death or serious bodily injury we cannot say if lethal force could or could not have been legally resorted to.

    But there are sure a lot of folks willing to jump right in and say that this or that or the other is an indicator of lethal force being applied against the victim, without providing any case law citation to support their assertions.


    What kind of force could a good samaritan use?
    color = blue] See above.

    Additionally, there are a lot of folks who seem willing to jump into the middle of an altercation in close and confined quarters without being intimately and absolutely sure of why the three individuals are in mutual combat and what was the actual initial provocation for said combat. This, especially when there is scant evidence, if any, that the victim has reached the point that he is unable to protect himself.

    As one who is wont to make moral lectures, I feel one coming on. It would be about the times when the best assistance one might render is to be a good witness and to assure that the cops have been summonsed. It would be about if one can discretely - meaning not become embroiled in the combat taking place - and safely take pictures/video that might help ID those involved, that would be encouraged. It might include a discussion of not wading into someone else's problem unless you are sure doing so is necessary - not right but necessary.

    But I think I'll skip the lecture and let the good readers sort it out for themselves.

    stay safe.

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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    It would be about the times when the best assistance one might render is to be a good witness and to assure that the cops have been summonsed. It would be about if one can discretely - meaning not become embroiled in the combat taking place - and safely take pictures/video that might help ID those involved, that would be encouraged. It might include a discussion of not wading into someone else's problem unless you are sure doing so is necessary - not right but necessary.
    But that's only IF you were rendering a lecture, which you most-certainly are not... right?

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    Quote Originally Posted by peter nap View Post
    Flag.....
    Cite?

    If that was true every country bar west of the Blue Ridge would get emptied by midnight on Saturday nights.
    Looks like my memory was wrong, I cannot find any case law to support such. Does anyone know if a blow or attempted blow to the head is sufficient to allow use of deadly force in Virginia?

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    Regular Member wylde007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonesy View Post
    Does anyone know if a blow or attempted blow to the head is sufficient to allow use of deadly force in Virginia?
    If you're a cop it does. And they have. And been exonerated.
    The quiet war has begun, with silent weapons
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    Quote Originally Posted by wylde007 View Post
    If you're a cop it does. And they have. And been exonerated.
    Really? You found a way to turn a talk about a fight at Denny's to suit your anti-LEO agenda? Will you provide cites to support your comment? I will say this... LEOs and non LEOs, including anyone oc'ing, would have a case of self defense if being slugged in the face by an attacker while they have a gun on them. It's easy to articulate that if you got knocked out with a gun on you, that you would not be able to defend yourself and your attacker could easily take your gun and use lethal force against you given the right circumstances.

    If I was not a LEO, I would definitely not step in and intervene in this Denny's situation. There's a lack of knowledge about who is an aggressor, if it's mutual, and seems like this is just a fist fight. Stepping in (using a chair as one posted) would open yourself up to possibly having to physically defend yourself (they might claim you were an attacker). I know people can get killed during a fight, but it's much more common to get a few bumps and bruises. Keep your guns and fists ready for a much more serious life threatening situation.

    If I was a LEO and this occurred in my jurisdiction, I would verbally tell them to stop. If they did not stop, I would call for backup and use my oc spray if I had it on me. You better believe I would not jump into a brawl involving multiple people without having some help. Now if I thought someone was getting seriously injured or possible feared they might be killed, then I would intervene alone.

    Like mentioned above, this is a case where you could make a citizen's arrest (breach of peace misdemeanor) if you chose to do so.
    Last edited by NovaCop10; 08-20-2010 at 03:46 PM.

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    Regular Member ProShooter's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NovaCop10 View Post
    Really? You found a way to turn a talk about a fight at Denny's to suit your anti-LEO agenda?
    Let it go, NovaCop...we're all used to it and we kind of just ignore it now. Its either the anti-LEO agenda, or the War of Northern Agression agenda.....
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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NovaCop10 View Post
    Really? You found a way to turn a talk about a fight at Denny's to suit your anti-LEO agenda? Will you provide cites to support your comment? .
    Hanover Deputy Long who shot a fellow named Figg, 5 times for aggressively crawling toward him. Figg was so drunk he fell through a wooden fence then crawled toward Long. Scared the poor boy so he killed him.

    Then the sheriffs Dept. Handcuffed his mother and several members of the family and left them face down in the driveway while they searched the house for guns. This was a DUI by the way, no guns or drugs involved. They pulled him in his driveway.

    When Kirby Porter, whom recently committed suicide and won't be missed, refused to prosecute and was about to be lynched in the press, realized he didn't have a prayer at being reelected if he didn't do something...he appointed the most pro police CA in the state as a special prosecutor. He was Robert Horan,,,one of yours I believe. He won't be missed either.

    Horan decided that if Figg crawled far enough, he could get Longs gun.

    That a good enough cite or would you like a few more. We can always talk about Sheban shooting a misdemeanor suspect in the back.

    There are lots of examples in Va.
    Not all Cops are bad...but there are enough and the ranks are growing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by NovaCop10 View Post
    If I was a LEO and this occurred in my jurisdiction
    The conditional is placed on being a LEO as well as it being in the jurisdiction of a supposed LEO. Since both parts are conditional with the "If I" and "if this" is this your way of saying you aren't really a law enforcement officer? Or is it just poor wording (which it is either way because you would be correct to say "If I were..." not "If I was..." but that's neither here nor there in relation to what I'm asking...)?

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    Regular Member wylde007's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ProShooter View Post
    Its either the anti-LEO agenda, or the War of Northern Aggression agenda.....
    Says the guy whose agenda on an Open Carry forum is to promote and market his own conceal carry courses.

    Right?
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    Quote Originally Posted by NovaCop10 View Post
    Really? You found a way to turn a talk about a fight at Denny's to suit your anti-LEO agenda? Will you provide cites to support your comment? I will say this... LEOs and non LEOs, including anyone oc'ing, would have a case of self defense if being slugged in the face by an attacker while they have a gun on them. It's easy to articulate that if you got knocked out with a gun on you, that you would not be able to defend yourself and your attacker could easily take your gun and use lethal force against you given the right circumstances.

    If I was not a LEO, I would definitely not step in and intervene in this Denny's situation. There's a lack of knowledge about who is an aggressor, if it's mutual, and seems like this is just a fist fight. Stepping in (using a chair as one posted) would open yourself up to possibly having to physically defend yourself (they might claim you were an attacker). I know people can get killed during a fight, but it's much more common to get a few bumps and bruises. Keep your guns and fists ready for a much more serious life threatening situation.

    If I was a LEO and this occurred in my jurisdiction, I would verbally tell them to stop. If they did not stop, I would call for backup and use my oc spray if I had it on me. You better believe I would not jump into a brawl involving multiple people without having some help. Now if I thought someone was getting seriously injured or possible feared they might be killed, then I would intervene alone.

    Like mentioned above, this is a case where you could make a citizen's arrest (breach of peace misdemeanor) if you chose to do so.

    At what point are you going to pull your head out of your ass ? No one is trying to steal your backpack little buddy.
    Last edited by All American Nightmare; 08-21-2010 at 04:10 PM.

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