Do Stand your Ground Laws Help or Hurt Crime Rates?

This is a discussion on Do Stand your Ground Laws Help or Hurt Crime Rates? within the Concealed Carry Issues & Discussions forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...rt-crime-rates Obviously, this writer is biased against SYG....

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Thread: Do Stand your Ground Laws Help or Hurt Crime Rates?

  1. #1
    Member Array CDRGlock's Avatar
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    Do Stand your Ground Laws Help or Hurt Crime Rates?

    http://www.alaskadispatch.com/articl...rt-crime-rates

    Obviously, this writer is biased against SYG.
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    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    I'm not really concerned with if the crime rate goes down because of the Stand Your Ground Law or not. I am more concerned with what protections the law affords me and what I must do to be with in it in a case of self defense.
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    Biased? Yes!
    Studies show whatever the study WANTS to show...I get sick and tired of "research shows..."

    A recent study suggests they do neither.

    Going back hundreds of years English common law, which underlies much of US law, has recognized a “duty to retreat” first before using deadly force to counter an attacker.


    If you go back hundreds of years, didn't most people stay at home hunting and defending, or were they out riding in their cars to the local shopping centers?
    Dirtbags were also dealt with in a different way...instantly
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    Quote Originally Posted by TN_Mike View Post
    I'm not really concerned with if the crime rate goes down because of the Stand Your Ground Law or not. I am more concerned with what protections the law affords me and what I must do to be with in it in a case of self defense.
    Remember that the law only prohibits and does not "afford" anything. Otherwise, if the law were to empower instead of prohibit, the violent criminal assailant could stand his ground. Case law like, People v. Hardin (85 Cal. App. 4th 625, 631–32, 102 Cal. Rptr. 2d), clarifies that, "when a resident acts with deadly force against an intruder in his residence, there is a presumption of imminent harm." This, armed violent criminal assailants' invoking a SYG defense, in fact, is a counter-argument to SYG.

    However, there is a distinction between immunity (barring or prohibiting government's power of arrest) and defense (during court procedure). Familiarity with the state's tradition of case law in addressing SYG and statute on SYG is wise. One would hope that, unlike England today, a violent criminal assailant has no legal recourse to assert a claim of self defense if that vca should get a taste of his own.

    On point to the OP, Wikipedia says
    The law's effect on crime rates is disputed between supporters and critics of the law. The third edition of More Guns, Less Crime (University of Chicago Press, 2010) by John Lott provides the only published, refereed academic study on these laws.[5] The research shows that states adopting “Stand Your Ground”/"Castle doctrine" laws reduced murder rates by 9 percent and overall violent crime by 11 percent, and that occurs even after accounting for a range of other factors such as national crime trends, law enforcement variables (arrest, execution, and imprisonment rates), income and poverty measures (poverty and unemployment rates, per capita real income, as well as income maintenance, retirement, and unemployment payments), demographic changes (broken down by race, gender and age), and the national average changes in crime rates from year-to-year and average differences across states (the fixed year and state effects).
    Last edited by Pistology; July 8th, 2012 at 05:07 AM.
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    Crime is crime and has been a constant in every civilization. With that said...... It is irrelevant whether stand your ground/castle doctrine deter criminals engaged in burglary, robbery, or aggravated assault. That is not the issue however the media and many of us have made it the issue. The real issue with these laws is they give law abiding citizens a level playing field against bodily harm from criminals. Law abiding citizens now have the chance of protecting themselves from home invaders, rapist, serial killers, etc., something we did not have prior to the enactment of these laws.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crowman View Post
    Crime is crime and has been a constant in every civilization. With that said...... It is irrelevant whether stand your ground/castle doctrine deter criminals engaged in burglary, robbery, or aggravated assault. That is not the issue however the media and many of us have made it the issue. The real issue with these laws is they give law abiding citizens a level playing field against bodily harm from criminals. Law abiding citizens now have the chance of protecting themselves from home invaders, rapist, serial killers, etc., something we did not have prior to the enactment of these laws.
    Check, again, Crowman.
    California, and other western states, are not subject to the English common law duty to retreat that retsupt cites and that is traditional in the Eastern states. As settlers moved west, that legal antiquity didn't follow as the newer states adopted "true man" law.
    DC member, mano3, posted a relevent article almost three months ago
    This is why even some of the bluest of states, like California, have Stand Your Ground laws. California’s Criminal Code 3470 is quite clear: “[The defendant] is entitled to stand his or her ground and defend himself or herself, and, if reasonably necessary, to pursue an assailant until the danger of death or great bodily injury has passed. This is so even if safety could have been achieved by retreating.”

    Whereas a disarmed public is a criminal’s paradise, and one in which crime victims are left no option but to flee in fear and trepidation, an armed public with the right to use those arms turns the tables on the criminal: forcing him to flee and face a bit of trepidation for a change. In this way, Stand Your Ground laws uphold the dignity of innocent life by allowing crime victims to fight back instead of seeking an avenue for retreat.
    Eastern states are correcting the error of their English ways. Maryland has commentary explaining:
    The true man doctrine applies when the individual claiming self-defense was in a place where he/she had a right to be and faced a reasonably apparent danger of death or serious bodily harm. Under this doctrine, an individual has the right to stand his/her ground against an attacker and is under no obligation to retreat and can use force, and if reasonable, deadly force against his/her attacker. This doctrine provides that an individual faced with a felonious attack is under no obligation to retreat, even if it is safe to do so. Nor is the individual required to deliberate whether a retreat is reasonable under the circumstances. However, the true man doctrine does not authorize certain behavior, including: (1) the use of unreasonable force; or (2) initiation of a confrontation or attack.
    There is a positive externality in carrying and SYG that affects the crime rate
    “An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing it.” In other words, fleeing an attacker doesn’t send a message about the value of human life or the merits of right and wrong, instead, it simply emboldens him to attack again without compunction. - Jeff Cooper, as quoted in mano3's article
    Americans understood the right of self-preservation as permitting a citizen to repel force by force
    when the intervention of society... may be too late to prevent an injury.
    -Blackstone’s Commentaries 145–146, n. 42 (1803) in District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U.S. 570 (2008)

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    VIP Member Array ccw9mm's Avatar
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    Legitimate SYG situations make it harder for criminals to get away with what they're attempting. Just as with firearms ownership and carry in general, it empowers those who resist crime by criminalizing fewer such incidents of resisting/defending. Of course, some percentage of people will mistakenly latch onto the "make my day" euphemisms that suggest it's an absolute that allows a person to resist anything they dislike merely because they have a "right" to be where they are. But as with ownership and carry in general, that's got to be a small-ish percentage of resisters/defenders.
    Last edited by ccw9mm; July 8th, 2012 at 08:29 AM.
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    Like any statistical study, you can make the number give you the outcome you want. Any killing, whether it is a murder or a SD shooting is a homicide. If your against stand your ground, the fact that there are more homicides proves your point that it makes the country less safe. If your for stand your ground, it is argued that since people are not required to submit to their attacked, they are fighting back with more BG's dying because of it. Thus stand your ground makes the country safer for the GG's.

    The unfortunate thing about statistical studies, is the paper they are printed on isn't even good for using as toilet paper, which is about all their studies are worth.
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    If new criminals were not being produced at a rate higher then the rate of the ones eliminated by "stand your ground" you might see a crime reduction, but that law just does not impact the criminals enough to outpace the growth.
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    I too think the "studies and statistics" are way overused these days. In most cases, one can infer most anything from a poorly constructed study. Having an agenda also never hurts whether or not the investigator is overtly aware of it.

    In many of the SYG cases that went to trial, the judges either misunderstood or misapplied the law and many of the tests of SYG when taken out of context are certainly misapplied, like when both parties involved are in the act of committing a felony as when a drug deal or gang situation goes bad.

    It has been the cornerstone of elimination of the death penalty argument that the DP is not a deterrent. It does however, guarantee the offender will not repeat the crime. And if the criminal is a wacked out sociopath, I probably could agree to the premise.

    The bad economy, breakdown of the family, Hollywood violence and liberal judicial system all contribute to today's apparent increase in crime, as does over crowded jails and revolving door penalties for repeat offenders.

    Finally, any time there is a case involving the use of a firearm, it is counted by statisticians as a crime because they take their numbers from police reports not from court records that might not adjudicate the incident for years, determining that no crime was actually committed.

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