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Deadly Force

Snippets from Florida's "Justifiable Use of Force" laws:

776.06 Deadly force.--
(1) The term "deadly force" means force that is likely to cause death or great bodily harm and includes, but is not limited to:
(a) The firing of a firearm in the direction of the person to be arrested, even though no intent exists to kill or inflict great bodily harm; and
(b) The firing of a firearm at a vehicle in which the person to be arrested is riding.

For whatever it's worth, we now know what "deadly force" is. Another subsection deals with LEOs (law-enforcement officers) and wouldn't apply to civilians. Next we move into the two main ways in which a civilian may use deadly force: to protect themselves or others (emphasis is mine):

776.012 Use of force in defense of person.--A person is justified in the use of force, except deadly force, against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to defend himself or herself or another against such other's imminent use of unlawful force. However, the person is justified in the use of deadly force only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself or herself or another or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony.

776.031 Use of force in defense of others.--A person is justified in the use of force, except deadly force, against another when and to the extent that the person reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to prevent or terminate such other's trespass on, or other tortious or criminal interference with, either real property other than a dwelling or personal property, lawfully in his or her possession or in the possession of another who is a member of his or her immediate family or household or of a person whose property he or she has a legal duty to protect. However, the person is justified in the use of deadly force only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony.

What, then, is a "forcible felony?"

776.08 Forcible felony.--"Forcible felony" means treason; murder; manslaughter; sexual battery; carjacking; home-invasion robbery; robbery; burglary; arson; kidnapping; aggravated assault; aggravated battery; aggravated stalking; aircraft piracy; unlawful throwing, placing, or discharging of a destructive device or bomb; and any other felony which involves the use or threat of physical force or violence against any individual.

In other words, it seems perfectly legal to shoot someone simply for attempting to burglarize my apartment or home. His dead body in my house would prove adequate proof to meet this section:

776.085 Defense to civil action for damages; party convicted of forcible or attempted forcible felony.--
(1) It shall be a defense to any action for damages for personal injury or wrongful death, or for injury to property, that such action arose from injury sustained by a participant during the commission or attempted commission of a forcible felony. The defense authorized by this section shall be established by evidence that the participant has been convicted of such forcible felony or attempted forcible felony, or by proof of the commission of such crime or attempted crime by a preponderance of the evidence.

I could be reading this incorrectly, but if I have not then it's a fairly interesting point. We're entitled to the rights to live and to maintain property, and violations against even your property (carjacking, burglarizing) seem to be treated rather highly.

10 Responses to "Deadly Force"

  1. Seems perfectly reasonable to me. I once had my car stolen, when I used to live in Florida no less, and I would have been happy to shoot dead the individual(s) responsible if I'd had the opportunity. Although my case wasn't a car-jacking, just a straight out theft from a parking lot. Even looking back on it years later, I don't think I'd feel any regret or remorse over it.

    Rob

  2. Even looking back on it years later, I don't think I'd feel any regret or remorse over it.

    I'm not sure that you could know this without having actually done it. Regardless, I don't think the use of deadly force to prevent any type of larceny should be justifiable and I'm not sure it is morally supportable. There is no physical injury occurring or being threatened in the commission of a GLA, why should you have the right and why do you see it as justifiable to shoot the person(s) responsible? For a burglary I can understand it simply because if you're in the house and someone's burglarizing it, you can reasonably assume that your life might be in danger. But larceny?

    Also, if you had had the opportunity to shoot the individual(s) during the commission of the crime it would mean you would have been there, which would change the entire scenario depending on what their reaction would be to your presence.

    1. If my only means of transportation were to be stolen then I would not be cabable of feeding my family. This holds true with my money as well. I will kill anyone who's actions would jeopardize the welfare of my family. And I see reason we should waist tax money housing one of these "people" when this money could be spend on helping the needy, better education opportunities, better health care, or perhaps the 1.64 trillion dollar deficit. By the way I happened to know first hand to know how good it feels to use deadly force against a would be mugger.

      Bottom line, loss of property can be devastating to a family. And if you think allowing the innocent to suffer is worth saving the life of someone who preys on the weak then I think you should consider flushing your head down the toilet.

  3. The sense of "violation" was palpable. Please don't get me wrong, I would never compare it to something like rape or another crime resulting in direct injury. However, I was truly surprised at how angry I was. And then, after the initial shock wore off, the inconvience was fairly significant since my insurance company would not declare the car officially stolen for 30 days and my rental car insurance ran out after a week. And, at the time, I was essentially broke, just living paycheck to paycheck.

    But, putting that aside, it all boils down to my feeling that one of the basic things wrong in our society is a lack of consideration for other people. If someone feels justified in stealing another person's car (generally considered a significant item in our society), then they obviously have little or no regard whatsoever for the person. If that's how you feel about people you don't know, then you're part of the problem. I would prefer to see you removed from society.

    Interestingly, I am opposed to the death penalty. Not because I think it's cruel, but because it is implemented unfairly, with a bias towards executing poor/minority individuals, and it is most definitely not foolproof, as Project Innocence has shown.

    Rob

  4. But, putting that aside, it all boils down to my feeling that one of the basic things wrong in our society is a lack of consideration for other people. If someone feels justified in stealing another person's car (generally considered a significant item in our society), then they obviously have little or no regard whatsoever for the person. If that's how you feel about people you don't know, then you're part of the problem. I would prefer to see you removed from society.

    Aren't you just proving your point here? Lack of consideration for other people? Isn't killing someone the ultimate lack of consideration? And for stealing your car? Jeez! Learn to forgive, and get over it. I'm not saying they shouldn't be punished, but you're pretty much advocating vigilante justice.

    And again, this wasn't a carjacking, where your life could (possibly) be in danger. You're saying that if you were across the street, and saw someone jimmying your lock, you'd be justified in shooting them dead? Wow, talk about being part of the problem.

    I agree that one of the biggest problems in our society is lack of consideration (and respect). But shooting someone dead earns you no respect (or shouldn't). Quite the contrary.…

    Anyway, when you value your car more than a person's life (any person's life), then yes, you are part of the problem. Or more specifically, you are the problem.

  5. Aren't you just proving your point here? Lack of consideration for other people? Isn't killing someone the ultimate lack of consideration? And for stealing your car?

    The moment they started their attempt to steal my property they forfeited their right to receive my consideration or respect.

    You're saying that if you were across the street, and saw someone jimmying your lock, you'd be justified in shooting them dead?

    Personally, I think that particular scenario is a bit of gray area. From across the street, it might only look like they're attempting to steal my car. So, no, I don't believe I would be justified in shooting them. If, however, I witnessed them smash my window to gain entry or saw them in the act of hot-wiring my car or about to drive away in it, then yes, I would like it if I was legally allowed to shoot them assuming I was properly licensed to carry a gun, was proficient in its use as determined by the state (I am neither), and had zero chance of putting anyone else in danger, i.e. there was no one else in the area where I was firing the gun and that includes potential people in buildings who I cannot see, etc.

    Anyway, when you value your car more than a person's life (any person's life), then yes, you are part of the problem. Or more specifically, you are the problem.

    It's not the car itself, but the woeful disregard for the owner of the car. A person who hasn't learned to respect another person and their property by the time they're old enough to go around stealing cars probably isn't going to learn. And if they prefer to take their chances stealing cars knowing that someone might shoot them dead, then so be it. Under the right circumstances, and I admit those circumstances wouldn't be all that common, they forfeit their lives. Oh well. No great loss as far as I'm concerned. And quite likely better for society overall.

  6. Here in the people's republic of California, you may only shoot another person if your life is in imminent danger, so someone trying to steal your car does not justify shooting him. However, if he was trying to run you over…

    What some of arguments above says to me is that someone's property is more valuable than someone else's life, and that is wrong. I have a California CCW, and whenever I'm carrying, I often have remind myself of that.

  7. Rodney, it seems that you're wrong (emphasis again mine):

    197. Homicide is also justifiable when committed by any person in any of the following cases:1. When resisting any attempt to murder any person, or to commit a felony, or to do some great bodily injury upon any person; or, 2. When committed in defense of habitation, property, or person, against one who manifestly intends or endeavors, by violence or surprise, to commit a felony, or against one who manifestly intends and endeavors, in a violent, riotous or tumultuous manner, to enter the habitation of another for the purpose of offering violence to any person therein; or, 3. When committed in the lawful defense of such person, or of a wife or husband, parent, child, master, mistress, or servant of such person, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design to commit a felony or to do some great bodily injury, and imminent danger of such design being accomplished; but such person, or the person in whose behalf the defense was made, if he was the assailant or engaged in mutual combat, must really and in good faith have endeavored to decline any further struggle before the homicide was committed; or, 4. When necessarily committed in attempting, by lawful ways and means, to apprehend any person for any felony committed, or in lawfully suppressing any riot, or in lawfully keeping and preserving the peace.

    That's California law.

  8. > That's California law.

    Never confuse the law with actual application of that law.

    The commission of felony clause in Section 197 is understood to apply to a felony against a person (i.e. the felony must be life-threatening), not property. There was a recent incident where a person woke up, went outside, and saw two guys trying to steal his car. He ended up shooting and killing one of the guys and now faces a murder charge.

    In CA, the right to self-defense ceases where there is no further danger from an assailant. Thus, if the guy is driving away from you in *your* car, you cannot shoot him.

  9. >> "Never confuse the law with actual application of that law. The commission of felony clause in Section 197 is understood to apply to a felony against a person (i.e. the felony must be life-threatening), not property."

    "...2. When committed in defense of habitation, property, or person, against one who manifestly intends or endeavors, by violence or surprise, to commit a felony..." (from Califonia Penal Code, Section 197).

    Rodney, comparing your statements to the exact text of California Penal Code, Section 197(2) yields the fact that the "application of that law" has been pushed to the point to where that law has been usurped. I am not surprised. It is a provable fact that all of the courts in the United States are fraud and treason and that one of the things that those fraudulent courts do is engage in selective prosecution in favor of physically violent parasitic degenerates. You can take a look at the legal evidence against the courts at http://home.absolute.net/xode/nwofraud/Bankruptcy_Fraud/Bankfraud1.htm


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