Rather than derail one of several threads on the subject, I've opted to start one specifically on this issue.
Rules for discussion on this thread
1. If you are going to comment on legalities of actions - Reference your state laws. Each state is different on the legalities of the actions discussed here. What is legal for someone in TX, may not be for someone in IL. When posting state law, please edit out extraneous info to keep the post short - READ - If the subsection, annotation, or case law does not apply to the discussion, delete it.
2. Upon request, post a link to your info
3. Remember what you post may come back to haunt you.
4. No personal attacks. The posted comments are the posters individual opinion on the subject at hand. If they are acting within their state law, then they are not being irresponsible, stupid, or giving gun owners/CC holders a bad name.
This comes up every time there is a discussion over the defense of property regardless of at home (outside the house/dwelling, I.E. garage, vehicle, shed or other outbuilding) or away.
Use of a firearm against someone in defense of property.
The BGs read forums like this, and as so called studies conclude (I'm paraphrasing from memory here) "BGs fear an armed homeowner thus will likely not enter the house". "BGs in Shall Issue States or Firearm Friendly Areas worry about a potential target being armed so they change their tactics or target selection."
A large number of members have stated that they would sooner let a BG take their wallet, vehicle if mugged/carjacked, vehicle from their driveway/garage, or the contents of the car and/or garage, rather than take any measures (deploying firearm or leaving "safety of the house") to stop them, other than calling 911 to file a report and let the insurance cover it.
So what have we taught the BGs?
1. Use just enough intimidation to give them your keys/wallet, but do not make them too much in fear for their life.
2. Don't break into the house, but take the vehicle, contents therein, or the contents of the garage/outbuilding.
I personally refuse to willingly be a victim under any circumstances. A BG is not going to get my money, wallet, keys or vehicle. If I leave my house to investigate suspicious events (motion lights, lights in the garage, someone in the parking area - behind house next to garage) and happen upon someone stealing, or attempting to steal, I will take the appropriate legal actions to stop them. If they drop what they have and take off running, I most likely will not pursue. If they take off with items, I may pursue, depends on what it is. If they resist, it is their choice how far that goes.
Having said that, there is Colorado law empowering me to detain them with physical force (NOT DEADLY). Resistance on their part may escalate that to a SD (I will need to verify).
IIRC There is law allowing Deadly Force to stop a Felony and or escape of person committing Felony but I am having difficulty locating it again, and will be making every effort to verify that "IIRC"
Now I am not going to go into detail of my actions on a myriad of scenarios other than to state that I will have called 911 as soon as I have determined that a crime is occurring.
There will have to be very extreme circumstances going on for me to intervene on the behalf of someone other than family. It's not my problem until it becomes my problem. Some of you lean more towards the "Sheepdog" mentality so lets keep this topic on you and yours (household family) alone.
In Colorado, the law states on use of force in defense of property (source Legal Resources);
Now the above highlighted item is vague, and the situation may change depending on the BGs actions. Yet another I will need to verify.
18-1-706. Use of physical force in defense of property.
A person is justified in using reasonable and appropriate physical force upon another person when and to the extent that he reasonably believes it necessary to prevent what he reasonably believes to be an attempt by the other person to commit theft, criminal mischief, or criminal tampering involving property, but he may use deadly physical force under these circumstances only in defense of himself or another as described in section 18-1-704.
One cannot instantly kill in defense of property. While a man may use all reasonable and necessary force to defend his real and personal estate, of which he is in the actual possession, against another who comes to dispossess him without right, he cannot instantly carry his defense to the extent of killing the aggressor. If no other way is open, he must yield and get himself righted by resort to the law. Bush v. People, 10 Colo. 566, 16 P. 290 (1887) (decided under G. S. ß 721).
However, under Use of force in defense of a person;
18-1-704. Use of physical force in defense of a person.
(2) Deadly physical force may be used only if a person reasonably believes a lesser degree of force is inadequate and:
(b) The other person is using or reasonably appears about to use physical force against an occupant of a dwelling or business establishment while committing or attempting to commit burglary as defined in sections 18-4-202 to 18-4-204; or
(c) The other person is committing or reasonably appears about to commit ... robbery as defined in section 18-4-301...
The defendant, if he did not provoke the assault, is not obliged to retreat or flee to save his life, but may stand his ground, and even, in some circumstances, pursue his assailant until the latter has been disarmed or disabled from carrying into effect his unlawful purpose, and this right of the defendant goes even to the extent, if necessary, of taking human life. Boykin v. People, 22 Colo. 496, 45 P. 419 (1896); Enyart v. People, 67 Colo. 434, 180 P. 722 (1919).
Right to kill in self-defense is not limited to cases where assailant intends to commit a felony. Ritchey v. People, 23 Colo. 314, 47 P. 272 (1896).
Instruction on use of deadly physical force is to be used only if the victim died. Because no victim died, instruction that defendant was justified in use of physical force if he used that degree of force which he reasonably believed to be necessary was proper. People v. Silva, 987 P.2d 909 (Colo. App. 1999).
18-4-202. First degree burglary.
(1) A person commits first degree burglary if the person knowingly enters unlawfully, or remains unlawfully after a lawful or unlawful entry, in a building or occupied structure with intent to commit therein a crime, other than trespass as defined in this article, against another person or property, and if in effecting entry or while in the building or occupied structure or in immediate flight therefrom, the person or another participant in the crime assaults or menaces any person, or the person or another participant is armed with explosives or a deadly weapon.
(2) First degree burglary is a class 3 felony.
Distinguished from felony menacing. It is possible to commit a first degree burglary without also perpetrating felony menacing. The merger doctrine does not apply because there is no requirement in this section that a victim be placed in fear of imminent serious bodily injury by a deadly weapon as there is in the felony menacing statute. People v. Sisneros, 44 Colo. App. 65, 606 P.2d 1317 (1980).
There is no requirement that victim be placed in fear of imminent serious bodily injury by a deadly weapon under the first degree burglary statute. People v. Montanez, 944 P.2d 529 (Colo. App. 1996).
Where the only evidence concerning the presence of deadly weapons at the time of the robbery was that defendant was carrying stolen items, including weapons, in a canvas sack during commission of the burglary, such evidence was insufficient to prove that defendant was armed with a deadly weapon, a requisite element of burglary. People v. Moore, 841 P.2d 320 (Colo. App. 1992).
Second degree burglary becomes first degree burglary when the perpetrator increases the risk of deadly or bodily harm to an occupant or other person present by possessing a deadly weapon such that he knowingly places or attempts to place such person in fear of serious bodily injury or intends to and does cause serious bodily injury to any person. People v. Moore, 841 P.2d 320 (Colo. App. 1992).
If the defendant steals a deadly weapon and thereby becomes armed with a deadly weapon, the burglary is elevated to first degree, and there is no requirement that the prosecution show that the defendant assaulted or menaced anyone with the deadly weapon. People v. Loomis, 857 P.2d 478 (Colo. App. 1992).
The defendant is considered "armed" with a deadly weapon if the weapon is easily accessible and readily available for use by the defendant. The court need not consider the defendant's willingness or present ability to use the deadly weapon. People v. Loomis, 857 P.2d 478 (Colo. App. 1992).
18-4-204. Third degree burglary.
(1) A person commits third degree burglary if with intent to commit a crime he enters or breaks into any vault, safe, cash register, coin vending machine, product dispenser, money depository, safety deposit box, coin telephone, coin box, or other apparatus or equipment whether or not coin operated.
(2) Third degree burglary is a class 5 felony, but it is a class 4 felony if it is a burglary, the objective of which is the theft of a controlled substance, as defined in section 12-22-303 (7), C.R.S., lawfully kept in or upon the property burglarized.
I have deleted easily 700 lines of content from the above copied/pasted laws after reading them. They did not apply to the discussion by my interpretation.
(1) A person who knowingly takes anything of value from the person or presence of another by the use of force, threats, or intimidation commits robbery.
(2) Robbery is a class 4 felony.
Again, I will be verifying my interpenetration of these laws, and checking into the other items. I am going to try to arrange a meeting with the local DA for discussion on this.
IMO our judicial system sucks. Criminals know that they can just about get away with anything with minimal risk from the courts. The only way they start to fear is when the victim fights back...violently. I am not, by any stretch of the imagination, insinuating or promoting vigilantism! Let the LEOs hunt the BGs. I am only acting on stopping my victimization at the time of occurrence, within the guidelines of the law. If I break the law, then I fully expect to receive my due punishment.