Here is FLorida, brandishing is defined as "displaying a firearm in a reckless manor for the purpose of gaining an upper hand in an argument"
You are allowed to use "deadly force o protect your life or "great bodily harm" or that of another person
To prevent a felony
to arrest a felon
In the case of the OP, where he was "assaulted" with intent to do harm, shooting would have been justified.
This exact situation happened on Orlando last year. A man was followed by a man who claimed he "cut him off' the Victim claimed he was not even at the intersection the rager said. The vic drove down the street where he lives and got out of the car after the vic, and punched him as thevic got out of his car. the rager went back to his car, then suddenly turned around and indicated that the punch was not enough. The vic pointed a gun at the rager and told him to stop. but the rager kept coming, so the vic shot him. The bystanders verified this.
The police spokesperson said that when the rager gets out of the hospital, he will be charged , and the vicwill not be charged.
I don't know whether a jury will feel you were safer or not, but in regards to legal protection, "castle doctrine" protection in my state extends to being inside your vehicle. It does not necessarily cover you when outside your vehicle.
Originally Posted by 9MMare
We do not have a "stand your ground" law as of yet, and while Missouri self defense law does not specifically say we have a duty retreat... it certainly does not go so far as to specifically say a person is protected from prosecution as long as they are anywhere they have a legal right to be.
So, if you exit your vehicle, you may be okay legally although we don't have a specific stand your ground law. But if you stay inside your vehicle and someone attempts to force entry, the law says you can assume they intend seriously harm or kill you and you are authorized to use lethal force to repel the attack.
AZ sees it your way.
Originally Posted by Fitch
you may show the other party your weapon and have it not be considered brandishing.
Any competent attorney can readily demonstrate to a jury how easy it is to break the side window on a vehicle. It can be done with any common pointed tool. Staying inside your vehicle, and relying on that glass to protect you, even from someone who you "think" is unarmed, is rather unwise, IMHO.
Originally Posted by 9MMare
Do what is best tactically, so you survive. The legal issues can be dealt with later - as Guantes posted.
I pretty much agree with your analysis. I hadn't considered it in those terms. But I think that is the right approach to figuring it out.
Originally Posted by Bark'n
OK, back to the scenario. So, if my gun is in it's holster, and I need 3 or maybe 4 seconds to get off a shot (it's in a super tuck at 5:00 so I'm sitting on it), 35 or 40 yards away is not very much outside the "opportunity" box if it's out side it at all. Based on what I've read, if the assailant approaches to within 7 to 10 yards he's got you unless your gun is already in your hand and that's when one is not in a vehicle so access to the gun is as good as it gets.
With that as background, some place at or a bit beyond 7 to 10 yards is the normal opportunity boundry which isn't much more than a car length - so if the Road Rage guy has backed into my car, has been demonstrating agressive behavior, returns to his car and pulls out a crowbar, he's pretty much inside the opportunity window if I don't have my gun in my hand when he turns toward me. Under those conditions, at that point I'd very much like to have my gun in my hand, and if I do, because as far as I'm concerned he's satisfied all three conditions, he's going to see it aimed at him. What happens after that is up to him.
OK people we're missing a BIG point here.
This situation could have been avoided and defused LONG before it got to the 'blocked bumper car stage'. THAT's why it's so challenging to solve. If you let it get all the way to that 'End Stage' it's going to be very difficult. The OP should have got out of there the MOMENT he saw the guy barreling down on him.
You can't solve all these HIGH CHAOS situations, least of all from a desktop. The solution is not to get into the end stage of a high chaos situation. PERIOD.
I see the 10thmtn's point regarding potential tactical advantage being outside of the vehicle. However, I too was thinking along the lines of Bark'n in that legally, being inside the vehicle makes the rules of engagement a lot more clear in your favor. The more I think about this, the more I come to the realization that showing a weapon, while in your vehicle / castle, you are making a clear warning to an aggressor that you are able and willing to defend yourself in your sovereign territory. While strictly speaking, this IS brandishing in as much as you are displaying a weapon with the intent to intimidate, you are NOT displaying it with the intent to upset an otherwise peaceful person, which I think really is the key (distinction) to brandishing as a crime. The breaking, or attempting to break, a vehicle window is an act indicating the intent to cause physically harm. Outside of a rescue situation, I can think of no other valid reason for such an action. I believe it to be intuitively obvious that their intent is not to talk, but rather such an action is only the prelude to further contact violence. The showing of a weapon to an aggressor, under these circumstances, is to remind or indicate to the aggressor that they are committing a serious violation of your protected space and that this violation will be met with full justified force. While such an action may escalate the situation, the rightful use of deadly force in such a circumstance belongs to the victim, not the aggressor and should the aggressor escalate the force, (to me) it is clear proof of intent and justification for usage of equivalent defensive force.
Edit, having a weapon in the low-ready state and letting it be noticed can achieve the same effect of notification, while still providing plausible deniability in regards to brandishing. As I said, I believe it to be obvious that there intention are hostile, consequently you are only preparing yourself for the increasing need to rightfully defend yourself in an otherwise vulnerable position.
Here's my basic rules for for someone approaching me inside my car. (Obviously subject to change based on the situation as it presents itself or plays out in real time), be it a road rage incident, some nut screaming threats to rip my head off inside a Walmart parking lot or whatever.
Originally Posted by Fitch
If I see a deadly weapon in his hand as he approaches, my gun comes out immediately and he is going to be looking down the barrel of my gun, unless I can drive away and escape.
If I do not see a deadly weapon in his hand I will likely have pepper spray ready as well as my gun. I may or may not have my gun out of the holster (depending on how my gun is being carried and what holster I'm wearing that day). However, my gun is going to be out of sight. Immediately available, if not in my hand, but I will keep it out of sight.
Obviously, if I can escape and/or drive away, I'll do so.
But basic rules. If they have a weapon in their hand as they approach, my gun is coming out and pointed at them, if not actually shooting them. If they do not have a visible weapon, my gun is "handy/ready" (out of sight) and I will likely go to a non-lethal method like OC spray as my initial response.
And, for 9MMare's sake, (and she and I have discussed this before)... This is how I would deal with a situation. I am a fairly able bodied male of good size and stature who has been an instructor in OC spray, unarmed defense and control tactics, ground fighting and other law enforcement disciplines. I am not endorsing this type of response for anyone else, or for women who may not feel confident or been trained to the level I have.
"So, should the student have shot him instead of just pulling the Glock and showing it to him? There are those on here who say they would have because they never would draw with out firing."
The legal answer as I see it, in FL, is- unfortunately- yes.
The guy with the bat is coming in his direction with a baseball bat...
Doesn't mean he intends to use it on his person...maybe he wants to bash out the headlights or windshield, right?
I don't believe that is a forcible felony...and if he did actually shoot the perp- he would have to convince a jury that he was reasonable in being in fear for his life. Probably would lose that argument though, if he had room to run/retreat...
It's not often discussed- but there are ways to show the BG that you may have a weapon- and hopefully get him to rethink his actions- without actually showing it to him, right?
I think whether or not you shoot or not can be more of a moral issue rather than a legal question.
Originally Posted by tobnpr
For example, in cases where there is castle doctrine and you are clearly justified by law to shoot anyone who breaks into your house, are you going to go ahead and shoot someone who just as clearly may not be a threat to you just because the law says you can in that circumstance?
Some people are going to say, "Hell yeah, I can't wait for someone to break in so I can legally use my gun." While others may use their moral compass to really weigh whether or not that person is really an immediate threat to their life, and may decide not to shoot someone based on the fact the intruder really has no "ability" to hurt them. Even though the law may say they would be legally in the clear to shoot, you know the intruder is really an unarmed, 90 lb drug addict who couldn't fight their way out of a wet napkin and wet their pants when you and your trained doberman confronted them.
I'm not talking about someone with a weapon where you have to try and guess whether they intend to really use it or not. I'm talking about where there is a clear and unquestionable situation where you know the person poses no real threat to you, yet circumstances of the law says you are going to get a pass if you do shoot.
Obviously, this is a totally different scenario, but the moral dilemma can still apply to the one in the post depending on certain dynamics.
Originally Posted by BadgerJ
I'm not going to get off the hiway, street, whatever, just because someone is approaching my rearend at an accellerated rate of speed. I am aware of him, I will speed up if necessary to avoid being rear-ended... but if he comes up on my rear and sits there, I will slow down a bit and allow him to pass.
That's common courtesy, and the way we were trained to drive, back when they made you change a tire, and look under the hood showing the battery, dipstick for oil (and tranny), and drive a manual transmission car, before they passed you off to the DOT ride along tester that did everything they could to make you go the wrong way on a one way street and other illegal activities.
Now, should we as PCW holders try to avoid any situations in which we may have to use our weapons?
Some say we should try to avoid most of them... And, if you have little faith in your ability to decide when to get out of Deadwood, maybe that's the prudent thing to do.
Sometimes, no matter what we're doing, evil comes our way. The odds are low, but it can and does happen. I choose to live my life. And, I trust my gut. I am not going to skedaddle anytime some testosterone junkie decides I'm a 98 pound weekling he can kick sand at. I'm not looking for trouble, either.
I'm yielding to his right to pass me, but I'm not going to turn off and hope he just goes on by either.... It's just possible he knows this area better than I do, and he wants me to turn off into that blind canyon.
You're right about one thing, we can't solve "all these HIGH CHAOS situations" from our desktop.. But we can consider them, and decide what we might do in a similar situation. And we can choose at what point in the scenario we enter the fray... many choose not to play at all "I wouldn't be in that situation" some realize that the situation presented is a possibility that could affect any but the home bound agorophobic.
Keep it. 2¢
So thanks guys...all.
If I have my gun....I can shoot him when he breaks thru a window or I can shoot him if I exit my vehicle and he comes after me. I think I am safer in the car. And as pointed out, I would be supported by Castle Law (or the equivalent) in my state.
If I dont have my gun....I still think I'm safer in my car....(if I cannot use my car for escape). I used to keep a tire iron underneath my driver seat....I should grab that again and put it back under there.
Ummm...You might want to consider something that does not require a lot of room to utilize effectively. A fixed blade knife, pen knife/pokey-stabby thing (don't recall what they are called), taser, or OC (still not a fan of OC...). You are more likely to have the tire iron taken from you than defend yourself while sitting in your vehicle.
Originally Posted by 9MMare
I'm a mechanic by trade, and I would go for a screwdriver before my 18" crescent wrench (never mind the other 8k pounds of blunt instruments in a variety of sizes and weight in my work truck) if I was CC free, and had to engage in HTH. Poke a few holes in a persons hand and arms, they will loose interest in grabbing you, or being within contact distance.
There's no doubt that this is true.
Originally Posted by 10thmtn
For me, I still think I'm safer in the vehicle, with or without the firearm. (Unless my attacker comes back with a gun.... at which point all bets are off)
I do carry OC spray but as I described in the other thread, I dont see that working in this situation.
Originally Posted by Sticks
I like the knife idea...I have carried a small folding blade on and off. I am not trained to use it. But I like the idea of keeping it in the car, in a situation it can ready and hidden....hmmmm. I can just leave one in the car..... So simple, yet not on my radar. Thanks!