Are You Required By Law To React??

This is a discussion on Are You Required By Law To React?? within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Okay, here's what I found in some of my research. In the state of Montana (where I live) there are statutes that outline the legal ...

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Thread: Are You Required By Law To React??

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    Member Array ecorrigan's Avatar
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    Are You Required By Law To React??

    Okay, here's what I found in some of my research. In the state of Montana (where I live) there are statutes that outline the legal use of force in defense of a person (MCA 45-3-102). An acquaintance of mine told me that the sate of Georgia where he lives has something similar as well, and told me that Georgia has a statute that says in the event someone's life is being threatened that you are required to react or face charges against you for not doing so. Keep in mind I'm paraphrasing here.
    Does your state require you to react? Are you protected by law if you do? What are the legal force parameters if you do? I'm curious as to how this works in other jurisdictions.
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    Member Array Sledzep01's Avatar
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    Interesting. I live here in GA.
    I hope someone responds who knows for sure.

    Sled

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    VIP Member Array varob's Avatar
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    I know of no laws in Virginia that says you must act, and if you help someone in something like a vehicle accident and inadvertently do harm to the person you're helping, you're covered under the Good Samaritan Act.
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    There are no laws in Utah requiring you to be a "good Samaritan", however, the use of force laws make it legal to do so if one chooses.
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    Member Array ecorrigan's Avatar
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    I understand the Good Samaritan Law as I'm a former EMT, but unfortunately that doesn't pertain to protecting someone's life if you see them in danger.

    40-6-393

    (a) A person is justified in threatening or using force against another when and to the extent that he or she reasonably believes that such threat or force is necessary to defend himself or herself or a third person against such other´s imminent use of unlawful force; however, except as provided in Code Section 16-3-23, a person is justified in using force which is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily injury to himself or herself or a third person or to prevent the commission of a forcible felony.

    (b) A person is not justified in using force under the circumstances specified in subsection (a) of this Code section if he:

    (1) Initially provokes the use of force against himself with the intent to use such force as an excuse to inflict bodily harm upon the assailant;

    (2) Is attempting to commit, committing, or fleeing after the commission or attempted commission of a felony; or

    (3) Was the aggressor or was engaged in a combat by agreement unless he withdraws from the encounter and effectively communicates to such other person his intent to do so and the other, notwithstanding, continues or threatens to continue the use of unlawful force.

    (c) Any rule, regulation, or policy of any agency of the state or any ordinance, resolution, rule, regulation, or policy of any county, municipality, or other political subdivision of the state which is in conflict with this Code section shall be null, void, and of no force and effect.

    (d) In a prosecution for murder or manslaughter, if a defendant raises as a defense a justification provided by subsection (a) of this Code section, the defendant, in order to establish the defendant´s reasonable belief that the use of force or deadly force was immediately necessary, may be permitted to offer:

    (1) Relevant evidence that the defendant had been the victim of acts of family violence or child abuse committed by the deceased, as such acts are described in Code Sections 19-13-1 and 19-15-1, respectively; and

    (2) Relevant expert testimony regarding the condition of the mind of the defendant at the time of the offense, including those relevant facts and circumstances relating to the family violence or child abuse that are the bases of the expert´s opinion.


    Here's what the friend from Georgia quoted. He couldn't find the part as of yet that stated the necessity to react or be charged for not doing so but this is a start. I believe (keyword: Believe) most states have something in place that will protect people if they react but I'm not positive. What can you find in your home state?
    In a crisis you don't rise to the occasion but rather default to your level of training!

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    -John W. Creasy (Man on Fire)

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    VIP Member Array Guantes's Avatar
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    I would be very surprised if such a statute exists, for a number of reasons. If it should exist, I would suspect that as little as calling 911 would satisfy the requirements of the statute.
    "I do what I do." Cpl 'coach' Bowden, "Southern Comfort".

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    VIP Member Array wmhawth's Avatar
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    Are You Required By Law To React??
    Too many variables to make such a law enforceable. I've never heard of it anywhere.

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    VIP Member Array oakchas's Avatar
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    The new HSA mantra "If you see something say something." Is not a law... I've never seen any law anywhere that requires action. I have only seen laws Like "good samaritan laws" that say you can't be held liable if you are trained and trying to help.

    If the laws of this country, as interpreted by the Supreme Court, do not require law enforcement to come to your aid, even if they see a crime in progress against you, I do not see how any state law requiring you to do so, would hold water.

    Please.. this is not to disparage and current or past LEOs... it is simply a fact in the law. Most everyone I know would try to help in any situation... But action other than calling 911 on behalf of any percieved victim, other than yourself or a loved one (when you were there at the onset), is a somewhat risky proposition.
    It could be worse.
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    Member Array beni's Avatar
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    South Carolina castle doctrine has provisions that allow deadly force to be used to protect another person if it is to prevent death or great bodily injury. But the castle doctrine does not require that you help.

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    I would surely like to see that GA statute in its entirety. I can understand a law "allowing" you to respond, but not "requiring." No gov't at any level can force you into harm's way. Like Guantes says, a simple cry of "Help!" would legally constitute "assistance."

    No doubt this is someone's mis-interpretation of some statute.
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    Member Array chivvalry's Avatar
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    The police aren't even required to act... what would make anyone think it makes sense to require a reaction from a regular citizen?
    "I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
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    Senior Member Array Chad Rogers's Avatar
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    I am aware of no laws that require a citizen to risk his life to help another.

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    VIP Member Array TedBeau's Avatar
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    I would agree that for John Q. Public no such law exisit. However there may be something that requires Public Safety Officers/ First Responders to act.
    I do know a guy that deals with juvinles that are housed in a care facility do to domestic issues. He told me that he is required to report anything concerning child safety, even when not at work. That is reporting only, but there may be something that requires police or paramedics to act.

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    Member Array laguna0seca's Avatar
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    I remember hearing something about this law, as I remember, four friends ended up in jail for not intervening in a carjacking. Here is the story.

    However, in real life, and like Oakchas said, SCOTUS has ruled that LEOs have no duty to protect, so I would doubt there is a law that could require a private citizen to.
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    Member Array chivvalry's Avatar
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    The police have no duty to protect individuals.

    http://www.firearmsandliberty.com/ka...rotection.html
    "I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."
    You are not paranoid if They are actually out to get you, however, They probably are not and you probably are.

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