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California 2nd Amend. Political Discussion & Activism Discuss gun rights activism and 2A related political topics here. All advice given is NOT legal counsel.

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  #1  
Old 12-07-2012, 4:49 AM
robster11 robster11 is offline
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Default What happens when a homeowner shoots

When a homeowner shoots an armed intruder. What level of investigation do police have for situations like this. Lets say its clear the homeowner legally owned the gun, and the intruder was armed.

Do the execute a search warrant and treat the homeowner like they may have committed a crime?
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Old 12-07-2012, 5:01 AM
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It depends on the state. In California they will usually take the firearm as evidence (sometimes all of them, I read), and do an investigation as to if it was a justifiable homicide, homicide(, or manslaughter?).

If you put more than 3-4 rounds in them, you had better have a trail of blood (in the act, not after) showing that they were still coming after you with a weapon after you fired shots... OR you are going to jail for homicide. Make sure that you don't empty magazine(s) in them if the threat has stopped, or you WILL stay in jail for a long time. DO NOT SHOOT THEM IF THEY ARE NOT A THREAT.

(This is just how I understand it, and they had better be in your house, or inside a locked gate to your property with No Trespassing signs every 1/2 mile, I think it is.)

Do not delay 24 hours in calling the police like one guy did that executed an intruder after said intruder was laying on the ground bleeding. HE is going to go to jail for a LONG time...

Quote:
Originally Posted by robster11 View Post
...Do the execute a search warrant and treat the homeowner like they may have committed a crime?
I believe that it depends on circumstantial evidence, blood splatter patterns, and facts (they can tell if your story doesn't add up based on evidence at the scene).
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Last edited by the86d; 12-07-2012 at 5:06 AM..
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Old 12-07-2012, 5:54 AM
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What happens really depends on the county it happened in and who the Chief law enforcement officer is of your jurisdiction. In one county you could be called a hero and did a great service for the citizens of your community. The other you will lose your Second Amendment rights for life, thousands of dollars of legal bills and be branded a racist, mentally ill vigilante.
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Old 12-07-2012, 5:57 AM
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screwed in this state.
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Old 12-07-2012, 6:14 AM
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In CA, you can expect those with authority to crawl up your backside with a microscope to the point of "does-he-use-matching-socks." Most likely, you will held to a different standard than a poor criminal trying to have some xmas.
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Old 12-07-2012, 6:15 AM
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Thanks for the reply. That is a good point about it being different for each county. Would it make a difference if you did not kill the armed intruder, but just shot them once and waited for police.

I assume they would still take your weapon, but would they ransack your house? It seems that a family already dealing with a scary situation could have to deal with a lot of other possible legal issues along with it. Those sort of unknowns can be very scary.
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Old 12-07-2012, 8:36 AM
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Of course shoot-and-wound could result in more "action." Depends on the specific circumstances and the LE agency and DA overseeing the investigation. In CA, there is no immunity from civil prosecution so you can almost expect a lawsuit from the poor aggrieved criminal (or his survivors).
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Old 12-07-2012, 8:53 AM
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My friend's brother in law did a couple of years for killing an armed intruder at his house. The only reason he did any time at all is because he's a felon and wasn't supposed to have a gun. No civil suit from the family. Bottom line is this - if it's a good shoot, nothing will happen.
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Old 12-07-2012, 10:43 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vantec08 View Post
In CA, you can expect those with authority to crawl up your backside with a microscope to the point of "does-he-use-matching-socks." Most likely, you will held to a different standard than a poor criminal trying to have some xmas.
Quote:
Originally Posted by chris View Post
screwed in this state.
Yeah, not necessarily to both of these.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jaymz View Post
My friend's brother in law did a couple of years for killing an armed intruder at his house. The only reason he did any time at all is because he's a felon and wasn't supposed to have a gun. No civil suit from the family. Bottom line is this - if it's a good shoot, nothing will happen.
(emphasis mine)

This is absolutely correct. If you keep a firearm for self-defense, you had better damn well know the law before hand. That guy that waited 24 hours? Yeah he's going to jail for a very long time.
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  #10  
Old 12-07-2012, 10:48 AM
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The idea that the state is "out to get you" is strong on any gun message board but the facts do not bear that out.

A simple search of "intruder shot + california" brings up lots of news stories and very very few of them ever end up with the shooter going to jail let alone being arrested.

If you own a gun for personal defense and use that gun for personal defense in your home under fear for your life or the life of others then you have nothing to fear from the state.
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  #11  
Old 12-07-2012, 12:21 PM
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Arrow In a system of "Prosecutorial Discretion".

The decision to ruin a person's life for a good shoot does not necessarily rest with the CLEO (Chief of Police/Sheriff) or the investigating Police/Detectives assigned to a case, although they could recommend the charges be filed and cause you to have an arrest record that causes you to be fired and keeps you from getting hired.

There is a thing called "Prosecutorial Discretion".

IN Wisconsin, it used to be that if the Prosecutor (who had sole authority to file a complaint in the beginning) decided not to file a complaint, the court could override that decision in an ex parte hearing.

In that statutory measure:

Quote:
"[O]nly the district attorney could issue a criminal complaint, rather than permitting the district attorney or judge to issue a complaint. If the district attorney was unwilling or unable to issue a complaint, a judge could do so upon a finding of probable cause." (Becker, 1988, pp. 749-768).
So if a prosecutor can now make the decision solely, and not be questioned, now people might think that he or she has too much power, but hasn't this always been the case? He better watch out if it's abusive, even in San Francisco (but that's just my opinion).

Quote:
"Traditionally, discussions of prosecutorial discretion focus on charging and plea bargaining decisions. (Citing footnote 30). But on occasions when new evidence casts doubt on a convicted defendant’s guilt, questions of prosecutorial discretion take on comparatively greater importance. When there is an inadequate factual basis for criminal charges, a criminal trial will often (though not invariably) act as a corrective. (Citing footnote 31). In contrast, the legal process holds out little hope for wrongfully convicted defendants, especially in the absence of help from prosecutors." (Green & Yaroshefsky, 2009, p. 472).
We have 58 county DAs, and none are the same, and I don't know how often they communicate with one another, but (even with my "in San Francisco" comment above) I feel like there could be "location location location" factors in each of their decisions to file a complaint in a scenario involving a good shoot where there is a blood and shell trail and the deceased is in possession of a weapon, but I would be confident in a system where we could have the kind of defense that is recommended. If it were a good shoot in SF, I believe strongly there would be some kind of charge filed against a homeowner.

Getting out of a messy situation involving a good shoot (to me) depends on the kind of Counsel representing you. This sums it up in that respect:

Quote:
Originally Posted by bwiese View Post
[This post was in no way inspired by any recent public posts from any party or litigation matter publicized here, and was instead based on some prior private communications, so please do not infer anything about other CG posts from this message.]

Unfortunately some folks seem to call "a" or "their" lawyer first when they have a pressing firearms legal matter in CA, and then retain him/her - and only later call CGF.

At that point, CGF can only try to cooperate and assist with the retained lawyer and perhaps subsequently offer assistance on the case (which may indeed be quite helpful to shortening the process).

CGF usually does not help with the fees of a lawyer outside the "CA gunrights coalition" ones we refer you to, unless for some special reason it were to become necessary. And for a variety of reasons, we cannot "take the case" away from a defendant's lawyer nor prompt a defendant to drop the lawyer.

This can be a costly mistake: what CA gun lawyers can do with their eyes half-closed [on top of their reputations for winning gun cases which plays into faster resolution] may take much longer for a non-gun lawyer, especially one that doesn't have knowledge of the history of rulemaking, prior case law, etc. Even the best non-gun lawyer takes time to get up to speed on matters like these - and on your nickel.

If you have a CA firearms legal matter that's gonna require some lawyering, and have general confidence you've not violated the law (charges are bogus, DA or LEO doesn't know the laws, etc.) PLEASE CALL CGF FIRST. Even if you're suddenly uncertain about some issue, CGF team would still like to hear about it and run it thru the screening process.

CGF is here to defend your gun rights when you've generally walked the straight & narrow; throguh this work we're likely to encounter numerous situations that may not just benefit the client but gunrights here in general.

There may also be 'interesting' matters arising from cases that "aren't quite so perfect". CGF has informally helped in matters where the case was not quite so clean due to inadvertent situations, but we didn't wanna see a poor guy screwed over big time (i.e., popped for felony AW charges but helping get them reduced to nuisance/seizure via AB2728).

Also, if & when you contact CGF, please ONLY state to the CGF contact the overall nature of the case and the information that's already known to the opposition. (At most: "I was busted for a rifle with a BulletButton and I followed the flowcart", "I was busted for a loaded gun - they said separate loaded magazine was still a loaded gun", etc.) Rock-bottom minute details that could affect your case should only be imparted to the actual CGF lawyer with whom you've been put in contact, to avoid any possible self-incrimination exposure.

For those not familiar with the operation, the CGF lawyer will question you and screen the matter. In the past, we've had folks that tell a good story about their situation - and later it's found there's a bunch of troubling color (say, legit OLL but another loaded gun in the car, felon with the group, etc.) If things are misrepresented and this is discovered after worflow begins, the client may well have to pay the legal fees himself per agreement. (And some of these folks we've *still* managed to help in spite of all this - and in spite of some catty backtalk when confronted with the issue.)

Nevertheless, we can't fix problems if we don't know they exist - and knowing about new cases is the first step.

We'd prefer to err on the safe side and even if you think your matter isn't 'pure enough' there's some chance CGF may be able assist or defend certain aspects of the matter so all is not lost.

Calguns Foundation helpline: (800) 556-2109 - although using email hotline@calgunsfoundation.org is usually best.

Knowing is the first part. And if you KNOW of someone with an gun legal issue that's in the general realm of CGF support (i.e, not a bank robber etc.) please let that party know about CGF and/or PM a CGFer here as much info about the matter as you know.
With all of this researched and stated, I am thankful that we live in a system of prosecutorial discretion, but when a DA decides not to use "spirit of the law" in a case where he or she has no business using "letter of the law", the system has become one with tragic consequences for everyone of the people, all of the time.

(And I am not a lawyer, just a dumb Trucker ).

References:
Becker, S. (1988). Judicial Scrutiny of Prosecutorial Discretion in the Decision Not to File a Complaint. Marquette Law Review, 71(4), 751. Retrieved from http://scholarship.law.marquette.edu/mulr/vol71/iss4/3

Green, B. A., & Yaroshefsky, E. (2009). Prosecutorial Discretion and Post-Conviction Evidence of Innocence. Ohio State Journal of Criminal Law, 6(467), 467-517. Retrieved from http://moritzlaw.osu.edu/students/gr...y-FinalPDF.pdf

Erik.

Last edited by Window_Seat; 12-07-2012 at 12:26 PM..
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  #12  
Old 12-07-2012, 12:54 PM
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Take a MAG 40 class with Massad Ayoob and learn all about how to defend yourself legally.
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Old 12-07-2012, 1:37 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the86d View Post
It depends on the state. In California they will usually take the firearm as evidence (sometimes all of them, I read), and do an investigation as to if it was a justifiable homicide, homicide(, or manslaughter?).

If you put more than 3-4 rounds in them, you had better have a trail of blood (in the act, not after) showing that they were still coming after you with a weapon after you fired shots... OR you are going to jail for homicide. Make sure that you don't empty magazine(s) in them if the threat has stopped, or you WILL stay in jail for a long time. DO NOT SHOOT THEM IF THEY ARE NOT A THREAT.

(This is just how I understand it, and they had better be in your house, or inside a locked gate to your property with No Trespassing signs every 1/2 mile, I think it is.)

Do not delay 24 hours in calling the police like one guy did that executed an intruder after said intruder was laying on the ground bleeding. HE is going to go to jail for a LONG time...



I believe that it depends on circumstantial evidence, blood splatter patterns, and facts (they can tell if your story doesn't add up based on evidence at the scene).

Where in the PC does it say you are limited to 3-4 rounds? I dont see it.



Quote:
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.



198.5. Any person using force intended or likely to cause death or
great bodily injury within his or her residence shall be presumed to
have held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great
bodily injury to self, family, or a member of the household when that
force is used against another person, not a member of the family or
household, who unlawfully and forcibly enters or has unlawfully and
forcibly entered the residence and the person using the force knew or
had reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry occurred.
As used in this section, great bodily injury means a significant
or substantial physical injury.
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  #14  
Old 12-08-2012, 6:34 AM
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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,

That's pretty self explanatory

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,

That almost seems ambiguous.

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,

Again, that's not totally clear.

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.

This could be a problem. I'm thinking that, like open carry, the law says you can do it, but law enforcement and legislators don't want you to do it, and if you do, do it, you will be labeled a vigilante. But that's just my opinion.

198.5. Any person using force intended or likely to cause death or
great bodily injury within his or her residence shall be presumed to
have held a reasonable fear of imminent peril of death or great
bodily injury to self, family, or a member of the household when that
force is used against another person, not a member of the family or
household, who unlawfully and forcibly enters or has unlawfully and
forcibly entered the residence and the person using the force knew or
had reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry occurred.
As used in this section, great bodily injury means a significant
or substantial physical injury.

On its face, it seems crystal clear. However, law enforcement has a tendency to muddy the waters and "err" on the side of making an arrest and confiscating "evidence" in matters such as this.

Just a thought, if a sworn peace officer (aka LEO) were to be in the same situation as a citizen, would said peace officer's weapon be confiscated ? Or is it "professional courtesy" not to do that ?
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Old 12-08-2012, 8:29 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thayne View Post
Where in the PC does it say you are limited to 3-4 rounds? I dont see it.
You are allowed to defend yourself only to the point where there is no longer a threat to you life or another. Once the threat is stopped, you must stop.

If you unload 3 30 round magazines and the perp has 90 holes in him, expect to be prosecuted for murder. If the perp has 3 or 4 bullets in him (enough to stop most people) and you expended 90 rounds, you better have a very good explanation and evidence to back it up. Otherwise a good attorney will come up with a better explanation then you while he sues you for every thing you own. Or the local DA prosecutes you for any number of other reasons.

(yes 90 rounds and 3 mag changes is extreme, but i'm using it to show the more rounds you expend the more questions will come up to your motive for shooting more than necessary to stop the threat)

JMHO
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Old 12-08-2012, 8:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by robster11 View Post
When a homeowner shoots an armed intruder. What level of investigation do police have for situations like this. Lets say its clear the homeowner legally owned the gun, and the intruder was armed.

Do the execute a search warrant and treat the homeowner like they may have committed a crime?
As others have mention, it depends on the initial investigation and on the circumstances. A clear cut case of self defense wouldn't cause the cops/DA to go further and investigate (haul you in for more intense questioning or get a search warrant).

A close buddy of mine used lethal self defense on 2 separate occasions (3 killed between the 2 occasions). Both times justified. They only took the weapons involved (returned later after the investigations were complete) and left him with his other weapons (in plain sight) that were at the scene but not used.
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Old 12-08-2012, 9:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SWalt View Post
You are allowed to defend yourself only to the point where there is no longer a threat to you life or another. Once the threat is stopped, you must stop.

If you unload 3 30 round magazines and the perp has 90 holes in him, expect to be prosecuted for murder. If the perp has 3 or 4 bullets in him (enough to stop most people) and you expended 90 rounds, you better have a very good explanation and evidence to back it up. Otherwise a good attorney will come up with a better explanation then you while he sues you for every thing you own. Or the local DA prosecutes you for any number of other reasons.

(yes 90 rounds and 3 mag changes is extreme, but i'm using it to show the more rounds you expend the more questions will come up to your motive for shooting more than necessary to stop the threat)

JMHO

A magazine change, followed by more rounds fired when it can be demonstrated that the threat was stopped before the magazine change (harder to prove than you might think) would indeed be a problem. However, emptying the magazine or cylinder is a frequent complaint about police shootings, and I've seen all manner of political posturing in response to citizen outrage, but that has never been that important of a consideration.

Why? Because you can empty a ten round magazine in about two seconds and a standard capacity magazine in under four. Unless you score a CNS shot, it can take more than two seconds for someone to react to even a fatal wound, it's not all that unusual for someone to survive up to five bullet wounds and the record is over twenty.

Finally, your accuracy when shooting that quickly under stress at anything further than point blank range usually means a lot of misses.

Ryan
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:20 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by the86d View Post
If you put more than 3-4 rounds in them, you had better have a trail of blood (in the act, not after) showing that they were still coming after you with a weapon after you fired shots... .
And you know this how? That's a rather extreme generalization. You're justified in shooting or you're not; a trail of blood is not required to demonstrate that you were righteously in fear for your life from an intruder in your home and that as far as you knew in the heat of the moment, he still posed a threat. Yeah, I know about the reputations and anecdotal characterizations of the prosecutorial histories of certain jurisdictions in CA, but a generalization like that isn't supported by the data as far as I know. If you have some data, please post it.

Or maybe it was just hyperbole to illustrate a point?
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Last edited by Old_Bald_Guy; 12-08-2012 at 10:23 AM.. Reason: Clarity
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by socal2310 View Post
A magazine change, followed by more rounds fired when it can be demonstrated that the threat was stopped before the magazine change (harder to prove than you might think) would indeed be a problem. However, emptying the magazine or cylinder is a frequent complaint about police shootings, and I've seen all manner of political posturing in response to citizen outrage, but that has never been that important of a consideration.

Why? Because you can empty a ten round magazine in about two seconds and a standard capacity magazine in under four. Unless you score a CNS shot, it can take more than two seconds for someone to react to even a fatal wound, it's not all that unusual for someone to survive up to five bullet wounds and the record is over twenty.

Finally, your accuracy when shooting that quickly under stress at anything further than point blank range usually means a lot of misses.

Ryan
Not disagreeing with you at all, all depends on the circumstance and evidence however. "Hard to prove" might be if there is no witness. Suppose a wife or child was a witness and when pulled aside said " he went back and got another thing to put in the gun and shot him 2 more times to be sure he was dead"? Any manor of scenarios can happen. A person shot 5 times can still advance and pose a threat, but the evidence should show, through a blood trail, of them advancing. And also, he could be shot 5 times and drop dead in the same spot, but a mag change and follow up shots involves time, especially if one is already in panic mode. That would have to be explained. Just all sorts of scenarios.

I think the OP is worried what would happen after a justified shooting in his home. I don't see the cops hauling him off if the shooting is justified. But the advice I was giving is:

1) Shut the hell up and ask them to investigate first and you will give a statement after they investigate.
2) After they investigate and they want to ask you for your statement, first ask if you are gonna be arrested.
3) If they say no, then give them an accurate, brief statement. If they say you will be arrested, shut the hell up.

I think its good advice
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Old 12-08-2012, 10:52 AM
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If the forensic evidence is consistent with the statement of self defense by the owner,then all should be well.For the most part that's how things play out.

Where things go to pot is when the prosecutor or DA decides to press charges on their own initiative.The police may close the case and consider it a clear cut self defense incident,but if political outcry or personal bias comes into play the homeowner will be in a heap o' trouble.Observe Florida Prosecutor Angela Morely's cancellation of Zimmermann's grand jury hearing. Sadl,we can't control this very important variable.Even in 'right to carry' states we have liberal leaning DAs too.
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Old 12-08-2012, 4:26 PM
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What happens really depends on the county it happened in and who the Chief law enforcement officer is of your jurisdiction. In one county you could be called a hero and did a great service for the citizens of your community. The other you will lose your Second Amendment rights for life, thousands of dollars of legal bills and be branded a racist, mentally ill vigilante.
It’s not just the CLEO it is also the DA and general political/social climate of where you live. Our last DA put burglars on notice that if a householder shot them as they were fleeing over the back fence it would not be prosecuted, and actually followed through. The DA that followed that one said there would be no change in policy, I have not heard of any cases one way or the other with the new one. It’s a nice ace in the hole, but I’m not going to push my luck and try it. I don't need that kind of drama if the threat is running away!
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Old 12-08-2012, 4:52 PM
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I would think that if someone does get in trouble it is because they said something out of confisisiom on record. Lets just say I would ALWAYS consult a lawyer before speaking with investigators. It's comes down to how you articulate the situation. "I was in fear for my life".
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Old 12-08-2012, 5:51 PM
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If you shoot somebody, you will be going for a ride to the police dept. so will your gun.

I think the only solid advice I would give a person is: You might say, I shot an intruder.

That's it. And I'm not even sure you should say that. You WILL face a civil suit, anything you say can and will be used against you. Twisted to mean whatever they want it to mean. Let your lawyer do the talking.
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Old 12-08-2012, 7:15 PM
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Originally Posted by MOA1 View Post
If you shoot somebody, you will be going for a ride to the police dept. so will your gun.

I think the only solid advice I would give a person is: You might say, I shot an intruder.

That's it. And I'm not even sure you should say that. You WILL face a civil suit, anything you say can and will be used against you. Twisted to mean whatever they want it to mean. Let your lawyer do the talking.
Ok I was unaware that civil suits were mandatory, and quite frankly refusing to talk to the police at all following a self defense shoot is a garunteed way to earn a trip in a police cruiser.

Following Massad Ayoob's post shoot instructions is your best bet.
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Old 12-08-2012, 7:37 PM
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better to have the lawyer do all the talking
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Old 12-09-2012, 3:45 AM
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Where in the PC does it say you are limited to 3-4 rounds? I dont see it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Old_Bald_Guy View Post
And you know this how? That's a rather extreme generalization. You're justified in shooting or you're not; a trail of blood is not required to demonstrate that you were righteously in fear for your life from an intruder in your home and that as far as you knew in the heat of the moment, he still posed a threat. Yeah, I know about the reputations and anecdotal characterizations of the prosecutorial histories of certain jurisdictions in CA, but a generalization like that isn't supported by the data as far as I know. If you have some data, please post it.

Or maybe it was just hyperbole to illustrate a point?
I said that 3-4 rounds is probably your limit, IF the threat has stopped.

If you shoot them once the threat has stopped (they halt their advance and their body "goes into shock" even just dazing them, they turn around, turn sideways writhing in pain,) turn around to cease and desist the illegal activity they were initially intent upon, and then you shoot them in the side, or the back, the exit wounds WILL be evidence, as will the blood splatter patterns, and you WILL probably be going to jail for murder. If you shoot someone on the ground, while they are just bleeding (due to CNS damage?), this will be probably be seen as an execution.

Trayvon Martin was beating the Zimmerman's head against the ground, and then went for Zimmerman's handgun, but who did all the ignorant fools that follow the media, AND black panthers, AND even Obama side with?
Better safe than sorry. Just MY thoughts...
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Old 12-09-2012, 4:26 AM
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In Cali I'm sure if you shot a home invader the first place you're going is downtown. Heck I keep pepper spray with me and my phone a gun is the last resort... Even if you are justified in a self defense shooting in this state you'll likely spend years in court in civil law suits while the home invaders family members sue you.

The way I look at it a home invader living and going to prison faces a fate far worse than death... California's prisons are medieval and make Mexican prisons look like Hilton!
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Old 12-09-2012, 6:57 AM
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This has been noted previously in the thread, but it bears repeating:

Claims that the homeowner shooting a burglar is likely to go through the wringer has never been substantiated. Indeed, we have almost innumerable counter-examples. I have never even heard of an arrest that wasn't associated with bg on bg crimes (homeowner was targeted because of criminal activity).

In fact, there is one case that seems heavily slanted against the paranoia involving a convicted felon. My google fu is weak right now, but there was an L.A. County case about four years ago where a convicted felon defended his girlfriend and her mother from a knife wielding assailant with a gun he retrieved at the residence (legally owned by either his girlfriend or her mother), then barricaded himself in panic. After he surrendered to police, he was arrested but the DA decided to drop charges.

Seizing the weapon in question is standard practice, even with police shootings, of course yours will be taken.

Self-defense shootings in public are another matter entirely. We've all heard horror stories about prosecutorial persecutions even in relatively gun-friendly locales.

Ryan
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Old 12-09-2012, 7:54 AM
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If someone is in my house that is not supposed to be there I am going to empty magazine. I won't be counting rounds, all I will be caring about is stopping the threat. Chances are that your accuracy won't be stellar so I expect to shoot until the threat is stopped, including if this leads to death of the intruder. I am immune to civil lawsuits because of a new Arizona law.
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Old 12-09-2012, 8:47 AM
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It also depends on who you shoot and who is paying attention. Look at the Zimmerman case in Florida, went from a good shoot to a messy case because the media got involved. They took the side of the poor black kid just walking home.

Last edited by Dantedamean; 12-10-2012 at 8:38 AM..
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Old 12-09-2012, 10:56 AM
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Default In a shooting.

This is not legal advice but just my humble opinion. lol

In a shooting always have an attorney present before talking with the police.

In the prompt 911 (Dont wait til the person bleeds out for 24hrs) call say this ONLY, "Someone forcibly entered my house. I was in imminent danger and feared for my life. There was a shooting and the intruder is down. Please send the police. I am (description of yourself including clothing worn)." Do not say anymore.

Do not say anymore to police at scene without an attorney present.

With regards to "how many shots you may shoot and only shooting 3-4 rounds" -thats ridiculous. You are authorized to shoot until the threat has stopped. If it takes 5 rounds til the threat drops and stops coming toward you then shoot 5 rounds, if you empty your clip into the intruder and he is still coming up the stairs after you then reload and keep shooting til he drops. I do not suggest shooting in the back of the head when he is down to finish him off-lol. Also do you really think you are counting rounds in that situation. Just dont answer questions abut round count until you and your attorney have discussed this and you know to answer like this, "I shot until the threat stopped until he stopped coming towards me and was down."
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Last edited by Gunlawyer; 12-09-2012 at 10:59 AM.. Reason: typos
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MOA1 View Post
If you shoot somebody, you will be going for a ride to the police dept. so will your gun.

I think the only solid advice I would give a person is: You might say, I shot an intruder.

That's it. And I'm not even sure you should say that. You WILL face a civil suit, anything you say can and will be used against you. Twisted to mean whatever they want it to mean. Let your lawyer do the talking.
If it's a good shoot, the post above is 100% false. Your sigline says one test is better than a 1000 opinions (something to that effect). I posted the "test" earlier.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Novator View Post
Ok I was unaware that civil suits were mandatory, and quite frankly refusing to talk to the police at all following a self defense shoot is a garunteed way to earn a trip in a police cruiser.

Following Massad Ayoob's post shoot instructions is your best bet.
Civil suits are not mandatory. I don't know what Ayoob's post shoot advice is, but I'd be leery of following the advice of a guy that's supposedly got all of these "qualifications", but really doesn't have much real world experience.
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:41 AM
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When a homeowner shoots an armed intruder. What level of investigation do police have for situations like this. Lets say its clear the homeowner legally owned the gun, and the intruder was armed.

Do the execute a search warrant and treat the homeowner like they may have committed a crime?
No offense, but the question sounds like "if I shoot somebody in my home are they going to find the other illegal stuff I'm doing?"

If you shoot somebody in your home, your home has just become a crime scene. You have a dead (or seriously wounded) guy on your floor.

The police are going to treat it as a crime until they are convinced it isn't.

And if you don't consent to them coming in, it will take them 2 seconds to get a warrant (which they dont really need, because of the guy on your floor).

You (or your lawyer) just saying "I dont know that guy, he broke in and he had a gun" may be true, but the police aren't just going to take your word for it. They are going to conduct an investigation to find out WHO the dead guy is, (is he a bible salesman, or is he a career criminal?) WHY he might be there (is he there to rob you, or is he your business partner?), HOW he was killed (was he armed? Can they trace THAT weapon back to him or does it look like you grabbed a knife out of the kitchen and tossed it down after the fact? Does your story match the evidence?), WHO you are (are you just an easy target for a lowlife, or are you selling drugs out of your coat closet and this is a drug deal gone bad?), IF the the two of you had any previous dealings, and whether you have any other motives to kill the guy (You're banging his wife on the side and she's got a million dollar insurance policy on him).


If its self defense, its self defense, the evidence will bear that out, and you'll be fine.... But its a homicide, and investigating those is their biggest job...
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Last edited by RomanDad; 12-09-2012 at 5:04 PM..
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Old 12-09-2012, 11:45 AM
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[B)

Just a thought, if a sworn peace officer (aka LEO) were to be in the same situation as a citizen, would said peace officer's weapon be confiscated ? Or is it "professional courtesy" not to do that ?[/B]
Yes, if you fire rounds, your duty weapon, possibly your backup and your rifle/shotgun get taken into evidence and sent to the crime lab. You also get tested for gun shot residue, driven to the station, mirandized and interviewed, if you do not chose to invoke your right to legal representation.

Many agencies NEVER give the firearm back, or in the case of one Bay Area county, wait until all civil remedy timelines have run out, so the deputy has to go buy a new rifle because he isn't getting it back for three years.
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Old 12-09-2012, 2:36 PM
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Originally Posted by the86d View Post
I said that 3-4 rounds is probably your limit, IF the threat has stopped.

If you shoot them once the threat has stopped (they halt their advance and their body "goes into shock" even just dazing them, they turn around, turn sideways writhing in pain,) turn around to cease and desist the illegal activity they were initially intent upon, and then you shoot them in the side, or the back, the exit wounds WILL be evidence, as will the blood splatter patterns, and you WILL probably be going to jail for murder. If you shoot someone on the ground, while they are just bleeding (due to CNS damage?), this will be probably be seen as an execution.

Trayvon Martin was beating the Zimmerman's head against the ground, and then went for Zimmerman's handgun, but who did all the ignorant fools that follow the media, AND black panthers, AND even Obama side with?
Better safe than sorry. Just MY thoughts...
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Old 12-09-2012, 2:53 PM
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Default What happens when a homeowner doesn't shoot...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MOA1 View Post
If you shoot somebody, you will be going for a ride to the police dept. so will your gun.
Your gun may, you not necessarily so.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonshine View Post
Even if you are justified in a self defense shooting in this state you'll likely spend years in court in civil law suits while the home invaders family members sue you.

The way I look at it a home invader living and going to prison faces a fate far worse than death... California's prisons are medieval and make Mexican prisons look like Hilton!
How 'bout a case where that's happened...

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Old 12-09-2012, 2:56 PM
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Wife will use a taser then run. I love less then lethal devices. Taking a persons life is huge and will also change yours forever. Hearing the fridge open and you lay in 8 rubber 12g slugs into gramdma wont be as bad as the alternative. Plus you will not hesitate, which could be harmful to your health.
Ultimately it may be up to a jury, and their own ideas of guns and not really the law. If i was on a jury for any self defense, i would make sure it was a hung jury.
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Old 12-09-2012, 2:56 PM
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Wife will use a taser then run. I love less then lethal devices. Taking a persons life is huge and will also change yours forever. Hearing the fridge open and you lay in 8 rubber 12g slugs into gramdma wont be as bad as the alternative. Plus you will not hesitate, which could be harmful to your health.
Ultimately it may be up to a jury, and their own ideas of guns and not really the law. If i was on a jury for any self defense, i would make sure it was a hung jury.
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Old 12-09-2012, 3:23 PM
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Wife will use a taser then run. I love less then lethal devices. Taking a persons life is huge and will also change yours forever. Hearing the fridge open and you lay in 8 rubber 12g slugs into gramdma wont be as bad as the alternative. Plus you will not hesitate, which could be harmful to your health.
Ultimately it may be up to a jury, and their own ideas of guns and not really the law. If i was on a jury for any self defense, i would make sure it was a hung jury.


Wonder if I can go three for three.
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Old 12-09-2012, 5:25 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foebia View Post
Wife will use a taser then run. I love less then lethal devices. Taking a persons life is huge and will also change yours forever. Hearing the fridge open and you lay in 8 rubber 12g slugs into gramdma wont be as bad as the alternative. Plus you will not hesitate, which could be harmful to your health.
Ultimately it may be up to a jury, and their own ideas of guns and not really the law. If i was on a jury for any self defense, i would make sure it was a hung jury.
Seriously.... How about identifying the "intruder" before opening fire even with less lethal means.
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