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Posted: 12/28/2002 1:23:51 PM EST
[Last Edit: 12/28/2002 1:28:40 PM EST by Gecko]
I have just finished reading Ayoob's "In The Gravest Extreme." I guess I didn't fully realize all the legal aspects surrounding the civilian use of deadly force. Now my interest is piqued. Are there any forums/sites/discussion groups that deal with the use of deadly force? Any other books you have read on this topic that you would recommend? Thanks
Link Posted: 12/28/2002 1:42:01 PM EST
I don't have any books to recommend but the courses I've taken (taught by attorneys, active law enforcement officers and instructors who have been through the system after using deadly force against another) have all stressed that if you use deadly force against anyone your statement to the investigating officers should be that you were in fear of your life or of being seriously injured. And your statement should be a brief one. Then shut up and consult your attorney before going into detail about the facts. I've always considered that to be good advice. If you live in a conservative jurisdiction you'll be okay if you really followed this rule. If not, re-read the statement about consulting your attorney, since unfortunately it's sometimes the good guys who are put through the wringer. If you are unfortunate enought to live in an area that will prosecute you regardless of the situation, my advice is to move to more friendly location. I will say that Mas seems a bit paranoid to me, but you won't ever go wrong by doing what he says.
Link Posted: 12/31/2002 3:55:12 AM EST
The above is good advice. Also, call your local representative and get a copy of your states statutory crimes and offences codes. Most will get it for you for free. Read the chapters on Justification......then spend a few dollars and see a lawyer to get an explaination on the legal terms.....it pays to be prepared.
Link Posted: 12/31/2002 4:16:38 AM EST
[Last Edit: 12/31/2002 4:17:45 AM EST by Aimless]
Link Posted: 12/31/2002 11:24:39 AM EST
Link Posted: 1/1/2003 4:33:30 AM EST
The advice Aimless gives is also very good. The problem with making a short statement in such a stressful situation is that few people can do that without getting dragged into an interview. We all want to be seen as good guys and "give our side of the story" and are concerned that the officers will think we're bad guys if we don't. Not true. They understand and will respect a polite refusal to make a statement at the scene.
Link Posted: 1/1/2003 5:08:05 AM EST
Link Posted: 1/7/2003 10:27:00 AM EST
Offering a simple SHORT statement saying ONLY that you feared for your life and that you want to talk to your attorney is good advice, generally (ie, "I though he was going to kill me/my wife/my daughter/my son" and "I want to talk to my attorney.") Pre-arrest, pre-Miranda silence (and post-arrest, pre-Miranda silence) has been used against Defendants in self-defense homicides before. The prosecutor asks, "if the Defendant was really in fear for his/her life and acted in self-defense, why did he/she fail to tell the police about it until days/hours later, after speaking with an attorney?" The prosecutor suggests that it's because there was no such fear and the killing was not in self-defense at all. My Criminal Procedure professor joked that he would give his clients "Reverse-Miranda" cards that they could simply hand to the officer(s). The cards read "I want my attorney, Mr. ________________, Esq." The client was instructed to say absolutely nothing. If you don't have any reverse-Miranda cards, then you may wish to simply say "I want to speak with my attorney," and then keep your mouth shut. Once you have invoked your right to counsel, no further questioning may occur until you have been provided an attorney or until you waive your right. Though it may be helpful in many situations to state that you feared for your life or that you feared serious physical injury, the safest route is probably to say only that you wish to speak to an attorney. Remember, though, that investigating officers have common sense too. If they arrive on a scene and find that a young mother with a small child has just shot a large menacing-looking man next to her car in a dark parking lot in an area known for attacks on defenseless women, they will probably not try to twist her statement that she feared for her life into something else. If you are the large "menacing-looking" man, however, you've got serious problems.
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