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CCWFacts
11-11-2007, 9:08 PM
Someone in the CCW flyer thread took issue with the statement in my CCW flyer that a CCW doesn't give powers to arrest, and pointed out that everyone has the power to make an arrest.

I would like to point out that, the power to arrest is there, but should not be used by non-LEOs except in the most extraordinary circumstances, or to make misdemeanor arrests with the assistance of a LEO.

The reason is this: citizens are strictly liable while making a citizens' arrest. From wiki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strictly_liable):

n tort law, strict liability is the imposition of liability on a party without a finding of fault (such as negligence or tortious intent). The plaintiff needs to prove only that the tort happened and that the defendant was responsible. Strict liability is imposed for legal infractions that are malum prohibitum rather than malum in se, therefore, neither good faith nor the fact that the defendant took all possible precautions are valid defenses.

Let's say you see some horrible person walk in to your Starbucks and start shooting people. Wow, a really bad person. You yell at him, "stop!" He stops shooting, throws his gun away, and says, "I'm no longer attacking" and starts walking out of the Starbucks. The threat is over and self-defense is not justified. You walk over and decide to arrest this person who has just murdered three soccer moms in your presence. As you are restraining him, you pin him to the ground, breaking his back in the process. The arrest was perfectly valid, and force was justified because he's obviously a very dangerous and violent felon. You get a an award from the mayor.

The criminal, who is now sitting peacefully on death row, can file a huge lawsuit, and win, because the guy making the arrest was strictly liable for harm that happened during the arrest! The mental state (lack of culpability) of the guy making the arrest is irrelevant. The correctness and reasonableness of his actions are irrelevant. All that matters is that the party was injured, and the guy making the arrest was responsible for the injury. That's all! The hero, who arrested this mass-murderer, could suddenly be in financial ruin, for taking actions where were perfectly correct.

In this case, it would be worth it. Arresting a murderer, when it's a situation that was witnessed in person and is totally unambiguous, is a duty we all share, regardless of the potential consequences.

But for anything that's grayer than that... it's not worth it.

FreedomIsNotFree
11-11-2007, 9:15 PM
I wouldn't hesitate to place someone under citizens arrest if the situation called for it. In CA, one of the exceptions to having a loaded gun in public is when a person is placing someone under citizens arrrest.

In regards to the scenario you described, I'm not so sure a jury would award a murderer damages for an injured back. I understand your point regarding liability, but I dont think it is likely. Nobody likes scumbags...

CCWFacts
11-11-2007, 9:23 PM
Right, I picked a scenario which is one of those situations where it's a moral duty to take action, whatever the consequences may be. As for what a jury might do... I don't know, civil cases only require a preponderance of evidence, do allow partial liability, and do not require a unanimous jury. I wouldn't want even 10% of the guilt in a million dollar tort. In this obvious and extreme situation, it doesn't matter, it's a moral duty to act, but in any situation where it isn't a compelling moral duty, don't do it.

tombinghamthegreat
11-11-2007, 9:28 PM
I wouldn't hesitate to place someone under citizens arrest if the situation called for it. In CA, one of the exceptions to having a loaded gun in public is when a person is placing someone under citizens arrrest.

In regards to the scenario you described, I'm not so sure a jury would award a murderer damages for an injured back. I understand your point regarding liability, but I dont think it is likely. Nobody likes scumbags...

You will be suprised. There are many cases where the attacker won civil suits even in the worst of crimes.

FreedomIsNotFree
11-11-2007, 9:28 PM
Not sure if many here know, but up until a few years ago, if a person placed another under citizens arrest, an officer responding to the scene, by law, was mandated to "arrest" the person that was placed under citizens arrest. If the officer refused he could be charged with a felony.

The legislature changed the law to give the officers "discretion" when dealing with citizens arrest. They no longer are obligated to "arrest".

FreedomIsNotFree
11-11-2007, 9:28 PM
You will be suprised. There are many cases where the attacker won civil suits even in the worst of crimes.


Such as...

dondo
11-11-2007, 9:31 PM
In regards to the scenario you described, I'm not so sure a jury would award a murderer damages for an injured back. I understand your point regarding liability, but I dont think it is likely. Nobody likes scumbags...

Umm...your in California. I'm pretty sure there is even a County called Scumbag here somewhere. Hollywood maybe?

tombinghamthegreat
11-11-2007, 9:40 PM
Such as...

In my CJ classes there were civil suits where home invaders would get hurt, sue the homeowners and win.(EX.- an armed criminal jumping though a sky light and landing on a bunch of knives or breaking though a window and breaking a leg on a "mispaced chair".) These people would sue the homeowners and win. Flordia and CA are most famous for this.

Paladin
11-11-2007, 9:42 PM
The criminal, who is now sitting peacefully on death row, can file a huge lawsuit, and win, because the guy making the arrest was strictly liable for harm that happened during the arrest!Please provide the basis in CA law for this assertion of strict liability attaching for any harms incurred during a lawful arrest.

blindluck
11-11-2007, 9:51 PM
I was under the impression that judges have discretion as to what information can be presented to the jury. For example, in your scenario, the events that led up to the attack by the defendant (good guy citizen) on the victim (murderer) may or may not be relevant in the eyes of the court and could be withheld from the jury. It's not about what is just as much as what is legal.

I hope that I am wrong and just watch too much TV. Please correct me if that's the case. Still, I'd love to hear a judge's, lawyer's or paralegal's input on this...

Bobula
11-11-2007, 10:03 PM
I deal with citizen arrest on a nightly basis. I work as an in house security officer. In house meaning we are not licensed by BSIS. We also go 'hands on' and physically detain suspects until a LEO arrives. We also deal with minors on a regular basis. We have yet to have a single suit filed in the companys history.

FreedomIsNotFree
11-11-2007, 10:06 PM
In my CJ classes there were civil suits where home invaders would get hurt, sue the homeowners and win.(EX.- an armed criminal jumping though a sky light and landing on a bunch of knives or breaking though a window and breaking a leg on a "mispaced chair".) These people would sue the homeowners and win. Flordia and CA are most famous for this.

I'd like to read these "cases"....can you point me to any of them?

FreedomIsNotFree
11-11-2007, 10:07 PM
I deal with citizen arrest on a nightly basis. I work as an in house security officer. In house meaning we are not licensed by BSIS. We also go 'hands on' and physically detain suspects until a LEO arrives. We also deal with minors on a regular basis. We have yet to have a single suit filed in the companys history.

Obviously, you only go "hands on" when a crime has been committed in your presence or when you know a person has committed a felony.

Could you please provide some scenarios that you have run across? Thanks.

Bobula
11-11-2007, 10:55 PM
Obviously, you only go "hands on" when a crime has been committed in your presence or when you know a person has committed a felony.

Could you please provide some scenarios that you have run across? Thanks.

We've broken up fights and detained both parties. Most commonly are our drunk&disordely in public, (647(f) pc), and trespass/refusal to leave. We justify cuffs as a safety issue, due to the confined space of our detention area

eckerph
11-12-2007, 12:32 AM
In my CJ classes there were civil suits where home invaders would get hurt, sue the homeowners and win.(EX.- an armed criminal jumping though a sky light and landing on a bunch of knives or breaking though a window and breaking a leg on a "mispaced chair".) These people would sue the homeowners and win. Flordia and CA are most famous for this.

I heard those same exact story's 8 years ago in my CJ class :rolleyes: time to update the material.

tombinghamthegreat
11-12-2007, 2:44 AM
I heard those same exact story's 8 years ago in my CJ class :rolleyes: time to update the material.

I wish they would.

larryb
11-12-2007, 4:40 AM
Nothing suprises me anymore in Ca. The jury's decision on this case is mind boggling. Dont count on a Ca jury to be on your side. Use extreme caution when dealing with any situation that might land you in court and be judged a jury of your peers. You may end up with a jury of liberals and be screwed.

http://www.sacbee.com/101/story/483161.html

Folsom inmate wins suit against prison
By Denny Walsh - dwalsh@sacbee.com
Published 10:58 am PST Saturday, November 10, 2007
A federal court jury has awarded an inmate $39,000 in punitive damages after determining that his constitutional right to be free of cruel and unusual punishment was violated when he was deprived of outdoor exercise during four extended lockdowns at a state prison in Folsom.

The jury directed six high-ranking current and former corrections officials to pay Gregory Lynn Norwood $39,000 in punitive damages, which are meant to punish and make an example of defendants and to deter others from similar conduct.

The jury of seven women and one man deliberated nine hours and returned its verdict Thursday.

At the heart of Norwood's civil rights lawsuit were the four lockdowns at the facility where he was housed at California State Prison, Sacramento - also known as New Folsom - in 2002 and 2003. The lockdowns stemmed from separate prisoner attacks on staff.

Norwood, 46, who is doing life without parole on first degree murder and second degree robbery convictions, claimed the lockdowns deprived him of outdoor exercise, resulting in stress, anxiety, depression, headaches and muscle cramps.

He contended the lockdowns were needlessly prolonged, ostensibly for security reasons, but actually as punishment and retaliation

RRALAR15
11-12-2007, 4:57 AM
I deal with citizen arrest on a nightly basis. I work as an in house security officer. In house meaning we are not licensed by BSIS. We also go 'hands on' and physically detain suspects until a LEO arrives. We also deal with minors on a regular basis. We have yet to have a single suit filed in the companys history.

I thought the law changed a few years back and now even "in house" security is required to be licensed through BSIS.

socalguns
11-12-2007, 6:28 AM
Where I remember the skylight/knife thing is
from the movie Liar Liar, where Jim Carey
(lying lawyer) has to tell (and write) the
truth for an entire day, his son's birthday wish.

Greta: A couple years ago my friend had a burglar on her roof, a burglar. He fell through the kitchen skylight, landed on a butcher's knife cutting his leg. The burglar sued my friend, he sued my friend. And because of guys like you HE WON. My friend had to pay the burglar $6,000. Is that justice?
Fletcher: No. I'd'a' got him ten.

Some light googling reveals this

http://www.overlawyered.com/2006/09/the_burglar_and_the_skylight_a_1.html
http://www.tortdeform.com/archives/2006/09/book_review_a_tort_protectors.html

Liberty1
11-12-2007, 7:21 AM
Not sure if many here know, but up until a few years ago, if a person placed another under citizens arrest, an officer responding to the scene, by law, was mandated to "arrest" the person that was placed under citizens arrest. If the officer refused he could be charged with a felony.

The legislature changed the law to give the officers "discretion" when dealing with citizens arrest. They no longer are obligated to "arrest".

However, many departments still have it as policy that an officer "shall" accept a private persons arrest. I'd fear department discipline being imposed far more than a state law saying "shall" arrest as a violation of the former is much more likely to be acted by a department then the latter by a DA.

I encourage private persons arrests. I've received dozons over the years at least, and never heard of one going to civil trial.

Bobula
11-12-2007, 9:37 AM
I thought the law changed a few years back and now even "in house" security is required to be licensed through BSIS.

Security Guards yes, my company thinks it's a loophole to call us officers.

Grakken
11-12-2007, 9:45 AM
In regards to the scenario you described, I'm not so sure a jury would award a murderer damages for an injured back. I understand your point regarding liability, but I dont think it is likely. Nobody likes scumbags...

You do realize this is kalifornistan right?;)

Lots of people like scumbags, how do you think our politicians get into office? (deleted)r immediately come to mind.

TTT
11-12-2007, 1:57 PM
When California stripped me of my right to self-defense, they relieved me of any responsibility for defending my community IMO. In the scenario you described I’d wave a cheery good-bye to the shooter and head on home…too bad for the soccer moms, but that’s what they get for voting in gun-haters.

JALLEN
11-12-2007, 3:27 PM
The case in the Tort law school texts is that of a farmer who owned a farm with a house on it, unoccupied. The farmer lived elsewhere. He had a problem with break-ins, people stealing stuff, so he rigged a shotgun pointed at the door and a triggering mechanism so that when the door was opened, the shotgun fired. Pretty soon, Ronnie Robber came through the door, the shotgun fired, taking off Ronnie Robber's legs at the knee. Ronnie Robber went to jail for burglary and ended up owning the farm in satisfaction of the civil judgment he got against the farmer. Or so I recall from 35 years ago.

The problem was rigging the shotgun to shoot whoever happened to open the door. If Farmer had been in there and shot the robber, no problem, but having it shoot mechanically was unjustified use of deadly force.

-aK-
11-12-2007, 4:48 PM
So.... what you are really saying is break the scumbags neck and not his back, that way he can't sue?....
:)

grammaton76
11-12-2007, 5:02 PM
The problem was rigging the shotgun to shoot whoever happened to open the door. If Farmer had been in there and shot the robber, no problem, but having it shoot mechanically was unjustified use of deadly force.

I'd also heard that part of the justification on that specific case was that firefighters responding to a structure fire could have been shot by that. Remember, that's one specific reason you can never count on being the only one to enter any given area of a house.

Max-the-Silent
11-12-2007, 5:08 PM
Someone in the CCW flyer thread took issue with the statement in my CCW flyer that a CCW doesn't give powers to arrest, and pointed out that everyone has the power to make an arrest.

I would like to point out that, the power to arrest is there, but should not be used by non-LEOs except in the most extraordinary circumstances, or to make misdemeanor arrests with the assistance of a LEO.

The reason is this: citizens are strictly liable while making a citizens' arrest. From wiki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Strictly_liable):



Let's say you see some horrible person walk in to your Starbucks and start shooting people. Wow, a really bad person. You yell at him, "stop!" He stops shooting, throws his gun away, and says, "I'm no longer attacking" and starts walking out of the Starbucks. The threat is over and self-defense is not justified. You walk over and decide to arrest this person who has just murdered three soccer moms in your presence. As you are restraining him, you pin him to the ground, breaking his back in the process. The arrest was perfectly valid, and force was justified because he's obviously a very dangerous and violent felon. You get a an award from the mayor.

The criminal, who is now sitting peacefully on death row, can file a huge lawsuit, and win, because the guy making the arrest was strictly liable for harm that happened during the arrest! The mental state (lack of culpability) of the guy making the arrest is irrelevant. The correctness and reasonableness of his actions are irrelevant. All that matters is that the party was injured, and the guy making the arrest was responsible for the injury. That's all! The hero, who arrested this mass-murderer, could suddenly be in financial ruin, for taking actions where were perfectly correct.

In this case, it would be worth it. Arresting a murderer, when it's a situation that was witnessed in person and is totally unambiguous, is a duty we all share, regardless of the potential consequences.

But for anything that's grayer than that... it's not worth it.

Lest anyone believe that the scenario posted above is fantasy, there is a very successful personal injury attorney that practices on the S.F. peninsula that I will not name. His position is that no individual has the right to use lethal force in protection of themselves or others. He has run two individuals through the civil wringer (that I know of) in the last twenty years. In both cases, he did not act on behalf of patently innocent individuals. In one case, he filed suit on behalf of an individual who was wounded in an armed robbery attempt (rendered paraplegic by wounds, he pled nolo and was sentenced to probation) and the other case was on behalf of the surviving family members of an individual who was shot and killed during a felony burglary attempt.

If you as a civilian use any level of force, even under the most clear cut of justifiable circumstances, you can find yourself in dire legal jeopardy - and not just from a grand jury.

Please note: in reading some of the posts I see that many posters make reference to "winning" or "losing" in a civil case. That's not the point - in order for you to defend yourself, you're looking at 10K $ in attorney's fees right up front. The case goes for a year or two, you're going to be in the neighborhood of 50K to 100K depending on the complexity of the circumstances of the use of force, and the end result for the plantiff in the case.

RRangel
11-12-2007, 5:16 PM
If it were that bad private security would have a real hard time. I guess it would depend on the circumstances. The judgment call is up to you.

California Penal Code 837:

A private person may arrest another:
1. For a public offense committed or attempted in his presence.
2. When the person arrested has committed a felony, although not in his presence.
3. When a felony has been in fact committed, and he has reasonable cause for believing the person arrested to have committed it.



Notice that it doesn't read "citizen", so it's not really a citizen arrest.

dondo
11-12-2007, 6:03 PM
When California stripped me of my right to self-defense, they relieved me of any responsibility for defending my community IMO. In the scenario you described I’d wave a cheery good-bye to the shooter and head on home…too bad for the soccer moms, but that’s what they get for voting in gun-haters.

Add some sugar to that bitterness bud. Soccer moms deserve to get whats theirs cause...well..you assume they vote a certian way...or ...well...forget it ...I'm sure you have it all figured out. Genius.

cadurand
11-12-2007, 7:33 PM
I deal with citizen arrest on a nightly basis. I work as an in house security officer. In house meaning we are not licensed by BSIS. We also go 'hands on' and physically detain suspects until a LEO arrives. We also deal with minors on a regular basis. We have yet to have a single suit filed in the companys history.The real risk when trying to perform a citizen's arrest is if you grab someone who is innocent.

Then you're screwed. I worked for several years in a retail store and the "loss prevention" officers were very careful about how they handled shop lifters. I know they grabbed a lady who had stuffed some merchandise in her coat but by the time she got to the door she'd dropped it some place in the store.

tombinghamthegreat
11-12-2007, 8:42 PM
I heard in the local news that someone at home depot stopped a shoplifter from stealing, got the stealer arrested and lost his job. Just another sad example of CA stupidity. But as far as citizens arrest (and CCW),I think that people ahould be proactive in stopping criminals from harming society. Remember to be extra careful and use the best judgement possible.

Bobula
11-12-2007, 8:44 PM
I heard in the local news that someone at home depot stopped a shoplifter from stealing, got the stealer arrested and lost his job. Just another sad example of CA stupidity. But as far as citizens arrest (and CCW),I think that people ahould be proactive in stopping criminals from harming society. Remember to be extra careful and use the best judgement possible.
I worked at a retail store that was like that once. If you confronted or detained you were fired.

5150-417
11-12-2007, 8:53 PM
If your gonna make a citizens arrest, the suspect has to commit a felony, you have to witness it, and you'll have to be willing to spend the night in jail. Why you ask, because the suspect will most likely press charges on you for kidnapping and if he doesn't the cops will. Remember he's innocent till proven guilty in a court of law.

attitudinal
11-12-2007, 10:51 PM
"Killer wades through school children, chopping them in half one-by-one, you upset him by wetting your pants in fear, he takes your home in civil lawsuit. God's truth."
Step away from the keyboard. PLEASE.

ivanimal
11-12-2007, 11:02 PM
"Killer wades through school children, chopping them in half one-by-one, you upset him by wetting your pants in fear, he takes your home in civil lawsuit. God's truth."
Step away from the keyboard. PLEASE.


OK what is the point of this post? Please do not bait the members here into an argument, or mock them with sarcasm or your time here will be short.

ohsmily
11-13-2007, 8:01 AM
If your gonna make a citizens arrest, the suspect has to commit a felony, you have to witness it, and you'll have to be willing to spend the night in jail.

What leads you to make this statement regarding the necessity of a felony to legally permit a citizen's arrest? Please provide support for it.

EDIT: I will save you the trouble and demonstrate that you are posting false information...the post below includes many citations to the penal code . I have excerpted the pertinent section and subdivision below. To make a proper, legal citizen's arrest, the suspect does NOT have to have committed a felony nor must you witness it to arrest him. If he commits a non-felony in your presence, you may arrest; if he commits a felony OUT of your presence, you may arrest.

837. A private person may arrest another:
1. For a public offense committed or attempted in his presence.
2. When the person arrested has committed a felony, although not
in his presence.
3. When a felony has been in fact committed, and he has reasonable
cause for believing the person arrested to have committed it.

Wildhawk66
11-13-2007, 8:36 AM
I apologize for this being a long post, but it seems to me that the laws associated with self defense and citizens arrest in California are both not well know very misunderstood. I though it might be helpful for the discussion if the applicable penal code sections were posted here, so that everone is on the same page.

That said, we all know it's not uncommon for the law to say one thing and a Police Officer or DA to approach the situation from their own opinion/viewpoint...

692. Lawful resistance to the commission of a public offense may be
made:
1. By the party about to be injured;
2. By other parties.

693. Resistance sufficient to prevent the offense may be made by
the party about to be injured:
1. To prevent an offense against his person, or his family, or
some member thereof.
2. To prevent an illegal attempt by force to take or injure
property in his lawful possession.

694. Any other person, in aid or defense of the person about to be
injured, may make resistance sufficient to prevent the offense.

834. An arrest is taking a person into custody, in a case and in
the manner authorized by law. An arrest may be made by a peace
officer or by a private person.

837. A private person may arrest another:
1. For a public offense committed or attempted in his presence.
2. When the person arrested has committed a felony, although not
in his presence.
3. When a felony has been in fact committed, and he has reasonable
cause for believing the person arrested to have committed it.

841. The person making the arrest must inform the person to be
arrested of the intention to arrest him, of the cause of the arrest,
and the authority to make it, except when the person making the
arrest has reasonable cause to believe that the person to be arrested
is actually engaged in the commission of or an attempt to commit an
offense, or the person to be arrested is pursued immediately after
its commission, or after an escape.
The person making the arrest must, on request of the person he is
arresting, inform the latter of the offense for which he is being
arrested.

844. To make an arrest, a private person, if the offense is a
felony, and in all cases a peace officer, may break open the door or
window of the house in which the person to be arrested is, or in
which they have reasonable grounds for believing the person to be,
after having demanded admittance and explained the purpose for which
admittance is desired.

846. Any person making an arrest may take from the person arrested
all offensive weapons which he may have about his person, and must
deliver them to the magistrate before whom he is taken.

849. (a) When an arrest is made without a warrant by a peace
officer or private person, the person arrested, if not otherwise
released, shall, without unnecessary delay, be taken before the
nearest or most accessible magistrate in the county in which the
offense is triable, and a complaint stating the charge against the
arrested person shall be laid before such magistrate.
(b) Any peace officer may release from custody, instead of taking
such person before a magistrate, any person arrested without a
warrant whenever:
(1) He or she is satisfied that there are insufficient grounds for
making a criminal complaint against the person arrested.
(2) The person arrested was arrested for intoxication only, and no
further proceedings are desirable.
(3) The person was arrested only for being under the influence of
a controlled substance or drug and such person is delivered to a
facility or hospital for treatment and no further proceedings are
desirable.
(c) Any record of arrest of a person released pursuant to
paragraphs (1) and (3) of subdivision (b) shall include a record of
release. Thereafter, such arrest shall not be deemed an arrest, but
a detention only.

TTT
11-13-2007, 9:02 AM
dondo: Add some sugar to that bitterness bud. Soccer moms deserve to get whats theirs cause...well..you assume they vote a certian way...or ...well...forget it ...I'm sure you have it all figured out. Genius.

Yeah, imagine a California gun owner being bitter. Absurd. Really. Nice. Syntax. Dullard.

Bobula
11-13-2007, 9:54 AM
If your gonna make a citizens arrest, the suspect has to commit a felony, you have to witness it, and you'll have to be willing to spend the night in jail. Why you ask, because the suspect will most likely press charges on you for kidnapping and if he doesn't the cops will. Remember he's innocent till proven guilty in a court of law.

Your user name fits very well.

DIG
11-13-2007, 4:11 PM
I'm not so sure a jury would award a murderer damages for an injured back. I understand your point regarding liability, but I dont think it is likely.

Remember, this is CA. Never underestimate the pathetic bleeding hearts that reside here.

Nobody likes scumbags...

Yet they seem to keep getting elected. It's a mystery to me :p