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Discussion Starter #1
I decided to try to find out what the current law is in Illinois concerning self defense. I am not very pleased from what I can find out about it. There are a list of seven conditions that must be met before you can defend yourself. The last one has to do with the kind and amount of force that can be used. I think this is the line that the Illinois Legal Aid Online refers to when they try to claim that there are two kinds of force that can be used. One is what they call Regular Force- That I think needs some explanation. Anybody know what regular force is? Evidently it is to be used when you are not in very much danger at all. Then there is Deadly Force and the legal Aid Online claims that the person attacking you or your home must be intent on carrying out a felony. They state that the person who is breaking into your home must be doing it in a violent way before you can use deadly force against them and then they smugly state that "and that is something which is hard to prove." Anybody interested in trying to get the law simplified and worded in a manner that is more friendly to victims of home invasion or personal attack- I would listen to suggestions. I think we would have to organize in some way for our voices to be heard.
 

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Well, it seems pretty straight forward to me - CRIMINAL OFFENSES (720 ILCS 5/) Criminal Code of 2012.

Reasonable belief is a common theme in use of force law in all 50 states and it's probably the most important concept to understand. So how do we know what is "reasonable belief"?

For starters, honor the Scout Oath, Obey the Scout law, and above all exhibit the Scout motto, be prepared.

I agree that we should be organized for our voices to be heard and I am most thankful that Skywalker has his saber back. :image035:
 
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^ what he said. It seems pretty straight forward to me and after getting my CCL there's no real doubt in my mind when I can use deadly force to defend myself or others.
 

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It really is not all that complicated. And no, you are never required to know the intent of another.
 

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And while I am on the topic, think about it for a moment. No, it is NOT all that difficult to show that the bad guy has entered your home in an illicit manner. Did you invite him in? Probably not. Any other entry wold qualify.
 

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This is not correct. It cannot be a simple illegal entry. It must be a home invasion. That involves a violent, riotorous or tumultuous entry of an occupied dwelling.

If you leave your door unlocked that's not a home invasion. Simple burglary doesnt count as a forcible felony in Illinois.

Illinois law is pretty clear but you need to read it carefully and talk to a lawyer.




And while I am on the topic, think about it for a moment. No, it is NOT all that difficult to show that the bad guy has entered your home in an illicit manner. Did you invite him in? Probably not. Any other entry wold qualify.
 

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Well this will be fun; First, note the definition of forceable felonly, which in fact does include burglary.


(720 ILCS 5/2-8) (from Ch. 38, par. 2-8)
Sec. 2-8. "Forcible felony". "Forcible felony" means treason, first degree murder, second degree murder, predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, aggravated criminal sexual assault, criminal sexual assault, robbery, burglary, residential burglary, aggravated arson, arson, aggravated kidnaping, kidnaping, aggravated battery resulting in great bodily harm or permanent disability or disfigurement and any other felony which involves the use or threat of physical force or violence against any individual.
(Source: P.A. 88-277; 89-428, eff. 12-13-95; 89-462, eff. 5-29-96.)

But notice further, that when it comes to the use of deadly force in defense of your dwelling, the statute is even more liberal in that deadly force may be employed to prevent a felony. There is no requirement in your home that you are trying to prevent a forceable felonly.

(720 ILCS 5/7-2) (from Ch. 38, par. 7-2)
Sec. 7-2. Use of force in defense of dwelling.
(a) A person is justified in the use of force against another when and to the extent that he reasonably believes that such conduct is necessary to prevent or terminate such other's unlawful entry into or attack upon a dwelling. However, he is justified in the use of force which is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm only if:
(1) The entry is made or attempted in a violent, riotous, or tumultuous manner, and he reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent an assault upon, or offer of personal violence to, him or another then in the dwelling, or
(2) He reasonably believes that such force is

necessary to prevent the commission of a felony in the dwelling.

Illinois law is pretty clear but you need to read it carefully and talk to a lawyer.
 

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This is not correct. It cannot be a simple illegal entry. It must be a home invasion. That involves a violent, riotorous or tumultuous entry of an occupied dwelling.

If you leave your door unlocked that's not a home invasion. Simple burglary doesnt count as a forcible felony in Illinois.

Illinois law is pretty clear but you need to read it carefully and talk to a lawyer.
In Washington criminals essentially have a right to come in your home. You cannot use force unless you can prove they were going to do bodily harm.
But then if you read all of the statutes you can find laws that state force can be used to stop a felony which burglary is a felony. Its like they have left many legal options open depending on the case but it creates great confusion. I am disabled but as I understand the law here I basically have to take a beating until a lethal weapon comes out then I can use lethal force.
 

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There are/were some states that have/had what we used to call an "up against the wall" law. That meant that not only did you have a duty to retreat, the burden was on your to show that the bad guy intended and was able to commit serious harm to your body. For purposes of this post, I do not want to get in to the difference between "Stand your ground" law and "castle doctrines". Suffice it to say that when you are in your home, and if there is a state castle doctrine, you do not have to retreat before employing force. Different states have different interpretations as to when the castle doctrine may be invoked. As an example, in some states, although you do not have a duty to retreat, you may have to show that the bad guy was posing a direct threat to you or your family which could result in death of grave bodily harm. As to Illinois, we do not technically have a "Castle Doctrine"law by name. However, it is actually more permissive than many castle doctrine states in that in fact you do not have to show a demonstrable threat of death or bodily harm. Only that you are preventing a felony. Now with that said, there is precious little case law in this State as to how this applies in various "what if" situations. So for those looking for some bright line law covering all in home situations, that may be pretty hard to come by, at least in Illinois.
 

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Dead perps can't argue! I grew up in New Mexico, and was always told by "The Law" to make sure if you made
a "good shoot" at home, be sure to drag the body inside! I have never had to do that, but know others that have.
I consider my home violated if an uninvited someone has to do more than turn the knob to enter. That is the only way to
enter my home, otherwise a person may come down with severe complications from Lead poisoning!
Old age has it's benefits, but trying to accommodate a criminal during his or her felonious attack on my abode, is not one.
Take me back to the 1840's and 50's where the law stood for something!No panty-waisted do-gooders that tried to "re-hab" the perp!
I can and will protect what I and my family own! PERIOD!
Tom in Lebanon, Oregon. TKH
 

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Discussion Starter #12
It seems fairly cut and dried to me, but then I'm only reading a website and I don't live in IL.
https://www.illinoislegalaid.org/legal-information/self-defense

Regular force can be used to stop property crimes.
Deadly force can be used to defend yourself or someone else, as well as the commission of a forcible felony such as: Sexual assault, Battery, Murder, Robbery and Arson.
Okay so it sounds cut and dried. Then what is regular force. I don't know what it means and I don't even want to venture to guess. Because I think a lot of people are doing just that. Guessing. That is why I said that I think the wording should be changed to make it clear what we are allowed to do to defend ourselves if we want to claim that we did it in self defense. Would you want anybody to interpret the meanings of these terms if your freedom depended on it. How do you plan on proving that the intruder was going to commit a felony when he tells the police that he thought his old buddy lived there and he just had the wrong -house -block -town or whatever?
 

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Discussion Starter #13
This is not correct. It cannot be a simple illegal entry. It must be a home invasion. That involves a violent, riotorous or tumultuous entry of an occupied dwelling.

If you leave your door unlocked that's not a home invasion. Simple burglary doesnt count as a forcible felony in Illinois.

Illinois law is pretty clear but you need to read it carefully and talk to a lawyer.
Right! That is one of the seven conditions that you have to prove for it to be called self defense in Illinois. They have to enter your residence in a violent, riotorous , or tumultuous manner. That means that if you wake up in the middle of the night with somebody prowling around in your house that you have to not only figure out their intent but also how much force they had to use to break into your house before you can use a gun to defend yourself. This is what I meant about wanting the law to be worded in a manner that is more friendly to those who are protecting themselves and their families. As it stands right now it looks like we have the right to carry but we don't have the right to defend ourselves in most instances.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
There are/were some states that have/had what we used to call an "up against the wall" law. That meant that not only did you have a duty to retreat, the burden was on your to show that the bad guy intended and was able to commit serious harm to your body. For purposes of this post, I do not want to get in to the difference between "Stand your ground" law and "castle doctrines". Suffice it to say that when you are in your home, and if there is a state castle doctrine, you do not have to retreat before employing force. Different states have different interpretations as to when the castle doctrine may be invoked. As an example, in some states, although you do not have a duty to retreat, you may have to show that the bad guy was posing a direct threat to you or your family which could result in death of grave bodily harm. As to Illinois, we do not technically have a "Castle Doctrine"law by name. However, it is actually more permissive than many castle doctrine states in that in fact you do not have to show a demonstrable threat of death or bodily harm. Only that you are preventing a felony. Now with that said, there is precious little case law in this State as to how this applies in various "what if" situations. So for those looking for some bright line law covering all in home situations, that may be pretty hard to come by, at least in Illinois.
If I wanted to bet my freedom on it I think the only reason that I would shoot anybody would be to stop them from attacking myself or somebody else in a violent manner. Other felonies might not be worth preventing.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Dead perps can't argue! I grew up in New Mexico, and was always told by "The Law" to make sure if you made
a "good shoot" at home, be sure to drag the body inside! I have never had to do that, but know others that have.
I consider my home violated if an uninvited someone has to do more than turn the knob to enter. That is the only way to
enter my home, otherwise a person may come down with severe complications from Lead poisoning!
Old age has it's benefits, but trying to accommodate a criminal during his or her felonious attack on my abode, is not one.
Take me back to the 1840's and 50's where the law stood for something!No panty-waisted do-gooders that tried to "re-hab" the perp!
I can and will protect what I and my family own! PERIOD!
Tom in Lebanon, Oregon. TKH
You would be better off to shoot the perp and let him fall outside otherwise it might be hard to explain the blood trail evidence. Somehow dragging him inside reminds me of the old golfers joke. "Charlie had a heart attack on the third hole after that it was just hit the ball and drag Charlie." "Lucky to break 72."
 

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"Then there is Deadly Force and the legal Aid Online claims that the person attacking you or your home must be intent on carrying out a felony. They state that the person who is breaking into your home must be doing it in a violent way before you can use deadly force against them "

This hurts my brain
 

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Okay so it sounds cut and dried. Then what is regular force. I don't know what it means and I don't even want to venture to guess. Because I think a lot of people are doing just that. Guessing. That is why I said that I think the wording should be changed to make it clear what we are allowed to do to defend ourselves if we want to claim that we did it in self defense. Would you want anybody to interpret the meanings of these terms if your freedom depended on it. How do you plan on proving that the intruder was going to commit a felony when he tells the police that he thought his old buddy lived there and he just had the wrong -house -block -town or whatever?
Regular force is something that the folks at legal aid made up. The actual state statute has nothing to say about it. I'd close that legal aid web page and start studying the actual statute.
 

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I'm not a lawyer, but I do have an IQ above room temperature. After reading the statutes it occurred to me that they are written in such a manner to: (A) Protect the lives of miscreants (read potential voters) while they're committing a crime; (B) Provide ample fodder for said miscreant's family (again, potential voters) to pursue and win a civil action against the heartless homeowner; and (C) Give a District Attorney full prosecutorial discretion over the homeowner based on political expediency (if it's an election year, race of the homeowner, etc.).
 

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Be sure you drag the body back inside before the cops come, and make sure there is 1 bullet hole in the front for every 2 in the back.
 

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Thanks for posting this. Looks like it's time for my annual re-reading of the statutes and another discussion.

Pardon the delay I"ve been posting via my phone and that's not so easy to do.
 
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