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Thursday, October 5, 2017

This Texan would not last long in Her Majesty's England....

One of the highlights of my life was visiting England in 2006 and staying with my friend Bill N., a London Metro (at the time) Police Sergeant. When I first met Bill in 2000, I took him to the range and let him shoot my Sig-Sauer. Damned good shot for someone who had not handled a pistol in ages.

Well, I was looking things up and I found this, advice from the British police on self defense, etc.

Oh...I don't think I'll be staying. Granted break ins are rare, lets just say my reaction will likely not be as "stiff upper lip" as this pamphlet suggest:
Q85: What lengths can I go to, to protect myself and my home if an intruder breaks in?

It is very rare for a person to be confronted by an intruder in their home. Advice from the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and the National Police Chiefs in relation to "reasonable force" has been prepared in the form of a leaflet which is available at your local police station, also see link in related information. However, listed below is a brief summary of that advice.

In all cases if possible you should call the police.

In the heat of the moment it is not expected that you should make fine judgements as to how far you can go. What you honestly and instinctively believe is lawful and necessary self defence for either yourself, your family or your property, even if a weapon is used, could constitute reasonable force.

You do not have to be attacked first to be able to use reasonable force in self defence.

Even if the intruder dies, provided you have used reasonable force in the circumstances described then you will not necessarily be prosecuted...

I will "not necessarily be prosecuted..." That doesn't give me a warm and fuzzy about protecting myself and my family, if I say so myself.
If, having disabled the intruder you then go on and inflict further punishment then this would be deemed to be excessive and gratuitous force and you could be prosecuted.

So make sure the initial "punishment" takes care of "the issue." Got it.
If you suspect that a person is going to break into your house and you set a trap, rather than involve the police then this would not be deemed to be self defence or reasonable force.

If someone is trying to break in and I'm waiting on him, it's not "a trap." We call that hospitality.
If the intruder escapes with some of your property or you chase after them to effect a citizen's arrest you are still allowed to use reasonable force. The degree of force in this instance may have considerably reduced and a rugby tackle or a single blow would suffice. To go beyond this as a form of punishment would again make you liable to a prosecution for assault and possibly civil action.

Well I'm not as fast as I used to be, so running his ass down won't really be an option. So I should handle the "matter" while I'm being hospitable. Got it.
It should be understood that the Police will always have a duty to investigate this type of incident, but the Police and CPS will always objectively assess all the facts recognising in the first instance that the intruder caused the situation to arise in the first place.

Sir, allow me to translate that into American. If he hadn't broke into my house, he wouldn't have gotten his ass kicked or killed.

I think I got the point.

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