"Reasonable Force"

"Reasonable Force"

This is a discussion on "Reasonable Force" within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Hey Everyone, I just took my CCW class and wanted to get some insight on the term "Reasonable Force." What is confusing about this for ...

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Thread: "Reasonable Force"

  1. #1
    Member Array Arkatect's Avatar
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    "Reasonable Force"

    Hey Everyone,
    I just took my CCW class and wanted to get some insight on the term "Reasonable Force." What is confusing about this for me is if I'm in a parking lot and some 350lb brute is going to attack me with his fists and I shoot him dead because I feel my life is in danger, is that reasonable? I'm a pretty good scrapper and I would always go pound to pound with someone if I felt I could hold my own, but where does that line get drawn in the sand? I know that if someone comes at me with a knife or a baseball bat then there is no question about it I'm gonna use "deadly force" but what do you all think about it?
    "When the people fear their Government there is Tyranny; When the Government fears its people there is Liberty"


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    Member Array Torrid's Avatar
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    That reminds me of a video I saw on TV. This cop pulls a guy over for a traffic violation. The person gets out of the car and goes on a rampage and starts wailing on the cop. The guy is built like like a freight train. The cop fears for his life and had exhausted use of mace and a taser. He then pumps about three rounds into the perp's chest and he still continued to fight, but it did slow him a bit. Other police did get involved to help end the scuffle, but I think it does show that something is stronger than a fist in a situation with a much more powerful aggressor.

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    Member Array Arkatect's Avatar
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    I agree! I only wonder how a jury would see it because technically he would have been "unarmed" and you had the gun.
    "When the people fear their Government there is Tyranny; When the Government fears its people there is Liberty"

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    Senior Member Array mulle46's Avatar
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    If you could show a disparity of force between you and the bad guy,I wouldnt care. Not everyone can handle a hand to hand confrontion. OMO.
    You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, "I have lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along." . . . You must do the thing you think you cannot do. Eleanor Roosevelt

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    Senior Member Array 2edgesword's Avatar
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    The use of deadly physical force is justified if you reasonable believe physical force sufficent to cause serious injury or death is about to be inflicted on you. After the fact a jury will have to be convinced that your believe was reasonable. In my opinion if 150 lb individual is punched in the face by a 350 lb individual he very well might suffer serious injury or death.

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    Height, weight, physical condition, age, mobility, ability to retreat, training, and mindset will all play in this arena. Dependent on how you honestly answer those questions may give you an answer. Disparity of force is the key.

    My CHL instructor was 6'8", 295 pounds of muscle. He'd have a hard time convincing anyone he'd feared for his life if a 70 year old grandmother attacked him with an umbrella, but my 4'8" 85 pound sister. at age 60 might not.


    The tyrant dies and his rule is over, the martyr dies and his rule begins. ― The Journals of Kierkegaard

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    Member Array banana's Avatar
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    If a reasonable reasonable man, in the same or similar circumstances would have used deadly force to protect himself, you too would likely be justified in using deadly force.

    Less-than-lethal modes of defense combined with verbal commands will go a long way to convince a jury that you were justified in your actions in the type of scenerio you discussed above.

    Verbal commands (hopefully heard by witnesses that will testify on your behalf), followed by the use of OC spray (evidence at the scene will prove this), and then finally the use of deadly force will help convince a jury that you acted reasonably.
    When guns are outlawed, only outlaws will have guns.

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    I'm in my sixth decade...I have had several 'parts' removed...I'm a peaceable man and wish no one harm.
    Screw with me or my wife in a parking lot, my car, or my home, and any response with my firearm will be both justified and reasonable.
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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    Member Array rcsnpr's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Torrid View Post
    That reminds me of a video I saw on TV. This cop pulls a guy over for a traffic violation. The person gets out of the car and goes on a rampage and starts wailing on the cop. The guy is built like like a freight train. The cop fears for his life and had exhausted use of mace and a taser. He then pumps about three rounds into the perp's chest and he still continued to fight, but it did slow him a bit. Other police did get involved to help end the scuffle, but I think it does show that something is stronger than a fist in a situation with a much more powerful aggressor.
    Heres the Video. YouTube - Cop Fight For His Life Against Ex-Pro Boxer

    If any one has been Punched by a trained fighter, they will tell you it is a bit different then by any Joe Blo.

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    Member Array webhead's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 2edgesword View Post
    After the fact a jury will have to be convinced that your believe was reasonable.
    In the US, a jury would have to be convinced that your belief was unreasonable by the prosecution since we are innocent until proven guilty.

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    Better tried by twelve than buried by six ...
    A strong man, especially if he has some training, can put you in a hospital for a long time and cripple you for life, or worse.
    Most states have "disparity of force" provision, but your scenario is not the place to ponder legalities ... it is a survival situation.
    The first rule of a gunfight: "Don't be there !"
    The second rule: "Bring enough gun"

    jfl
    (NRA Life Member/Instructor - GOA - IDPA - GSSF - ex-IHMSA)

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    Quote Originally Posted by webhead View Post
    In the US, a jury would have to be convinced that your belief was unreasonable by the prosecution since we are innocent until proven guilty.
    While in theory you are correct, in reality you will have to prove your actions were reasonable and correct.

  13. #13
    Member Array Arkatect's Avatar
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    I love this forum!!!! Thanks for all the great responses everyone
    "When the people fear their Government there is Tyranny; When the Government fears its people there is Liberty"

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    Quote Originally Posted by rcsnpr View Post
    Heres the Video. YouTube - Cop Fight For His Life Against Ex-Pro Boxer

    If any one has been Punched by a trained fighter, they will tell you it is a bit different then by any Joe Blo.
    This video put a lot in perspective for me thanks!!
    "When the people fear their Government there is Tyranny; When the Government fears its people there is Liberty"

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    Member Array David in MI's Avatar
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    I life in MI and no longer have a duty to retreat but I think that, in the example you provided, I would if the situation allowed. If I was confronted by a 350lb man W/O a gun then I would much rather back/run away or get an obstacle (car, etc) between us if able, key word being able. I would not want it on my conscience for the rest of my life that I killed someone in a situation that I could have deflated by simply getting some ground between me and the attacker. I mean, how fast can a 350lb man run?

    However, if I am in a situation where I am unable to get away then my response would be more in line with many who have already posted and would show or draw my gun depending upon his overall demeanor. From what I have read thus far, simply showing a firearm is likely to defuse most situations like this, especially when showing/drawing on someone who is unarmed. Bad guys are cowards and look for weakness in prey, not strength. When confronted with strength their first reaction is often to flee.

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