Legality of Defending One's Home from Rioters

Discussion in 'Legal and Activism' started by KVFirearmTalk, Jun 1, 2020.

  1. KVFirearmTalk

    KVFirearmTalk New Member


    Can anyone shed light on my rights to defend my home from rioters? Must I wait until they are physically breaching the interior? What if they are using incendiary devices?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. primer1

    primer1 Well-Known Member Supporter

    Research your state's laws, they vary quite a bit from state to state.
    mrm14, JimRau, Mister Dave and 3 others like this.

  3. Gatoragn

    Gatoragn Well-Known Member Supporter

    Use an internet search to read about your state's "castle doctrine" laws.
  4. Sniper03

    Sniper03 Supporting Member Supporter

    I will just say this! Anyone throwing a fire cocktail at my home is simply DRT!
    They can take that to the Bank!;)

    This is simply about Soros and others supporting the Anarchists.
    They could care less about the Officer and the dead man.
    It is all about an opportunity to loot, burn and attack America.
    I am all for the good folks having the right to conduct a legal protest!
    But IMO those caught directly in the act of burning, looting and destroying property need shot. The Crap would stop! Because the Anarchists are cowards when it comes to that. This is not just talk. I was with the Army in 1968 at the Democratic Convention Riots. We dealt with Anarchists then some in the form of the Students for a Democratic Society! Now we have ANTIFA and others.
    They burnt the St Johns Church in Washington last night.
    But as soon as a few of them were shot at Kent State the Riots stopped!:rolleyes:

    Last edited: Jun 1, 2020
  5. RKtullahoma

    RKtullahoma Well-Known Member Supporter

    Tennessee upholds Castle Doctrine.

    Looters and arsonists should be shot on sight. The Floyd stupidity was a face for all this crap.
    Caveman Jim, ellis36 and Sniper03 like this.
  6. 7.62 Man

    7.62 Man Well-Known Member

    Don't know about your state but here in IN anyone attempting to burn down a structure is an arsonist & can be shot on sight. A burning stick or a bottle full of gas is a deadly weapon.
    There also is something called the castle law that says you have the right to protect your home against anyone breaking in.

    Attached Files:

  7. BK3220

    BK3220 Active Member Lifetime Supporter

  8. G66enigma

    G66enigma Well-Known Member

    Assuming you live in the U.S. ...

    Absolutely review your own state's specific statutes, and speak with a competent attorney in the subject matter.

    That said ...

    Basically, it's all but certain the "dividing line" between lawfully justifiable action and inaction is going to rest on whether lives are materially threatened. Every state statute I've read on the subject speaks to that distinction, however they phrase it.

    The whole "sticks and stones might break my bones, but names will never hurt me" thing. Until you're at risk of being battered, merely spewing words typically isn't sufficient in states to justify force upon another, let alone lethal force.

    But arson's different. Riotous imminent felony battery's different. Breaching your home's perimeter defenses is different. Lives are on the line, in those situations, and it's where state law begins to turn.

    Particularly consider the distinctions in your state's laws between property defense and person defense. In many states, you simply can't use physical force upon another for "mere" threats, particularly if those threats aren't imminently and manifestly putting your at risk of loss of life or limb. Typically, if you're the initiating aggressor, you're legally accountable for that. Uncertain if you're in a "duty to retreat" state, but those places are unique "gems" in their own right, with respect to defense against violent perpetrators.

    Thankfully, I live in a state that's fairly straightforward with defense of self and others. Basically, a person's pretty much covered, legally, if reasonably using force to halt violent person felonies ... arson, battery, robbery, etc, even of a third person. But a number of states simply aren't so cut-and-dried. (Even so, in such states the "reasonableness" aspect matters a whole lot.)

    Caution, if not knowing for certain about your state's stipulations.

    Fact is, though, setting your house on fire equals dire deadly threat to all occupants. So, you ought to be easily covered with that one, for whatever use of force you do that reasonably protects against outright arson. Merely tossing rocks or crud at your home, though, without manifest threat of entry and resulting damage to occupants? Again, the "sticks and stones" thing. Most states distinguish between ugly acts and dire threats; they're definitely not the same, and it's typically clear in the statutes.
    sheriffjohn and Ghost1958 like this.
  9. KVFirearmTalk

    KVFirearmTalk New Member

    Thank you for your replies. Im in CT which I believe *DOES* have Castle Doctrine:

    I suppose it comes down to if I can prove I felt lives were in imminent danger. Good to hear about the Arson part, which seems to support imminent danger.
    Mister Dave and bluez like this.
  10. Nmwabbit

    Nmwabbit Well-Known Member

    first and have come to the internet forum for legal advice...I am not an attorney and those internet blurps by 'attorney' are not viable to defend yourself.

    Further OP your six year olde cite is not reference to statutory law but an OPINION by 'researchers'!

    however here is a quickie synopsis of CT statutory law:

    Sec. 53a-19. Use of physical force in defense of person. (a) Except as provided in subsections (b) and (c) of this section, a person is justified in using reasonable physical force upon another person to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of physical force, and he may use such degree of force which he reasonably believes to be necessary for such purpose; except that deadly physical force may not be used unless the actor reasonably believes that such other person is (1) using or about to use deadly physical force, or (2) inflicting or about to inflict great bodily harm.

    Sec. 53a-20. Use of physical force in defense of premises. A person in possession or control of premises, or a person who is licensed or privileged to be in or upon such premises, is justified in using reasonable physical force upon another person when and to the extent that he reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent or terminate the commission or attempted commission of a criminal trespass by such other person in or upon such premises; but he may use deadly physical force under such circumstances only (1) in defense of a person as prescribed in section 53a-19, or (2) when he reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent an attempt by the trespasser to commit arson or any crime of violence, or (3) to the extent that he reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent or terminate an unlawful entry by force into his dwelling as defined in section 53a-100, or place of work, and for the sole purpose of such prevention or termination.

    Sec. 53a-21. Use of physical force in defense of property. A person is justified in using reasonable physical force upon another person when and to the extent that he reasonably believes such to be necessary to prevent an attempt by such other person to commit larceny or criminal mischief involving property, or when and to the extent he reasonably believes such to be necessary to regain property which he reasonably believes to have been acquired by larceny within a reasonable time prior to the use of such force; but he may use deadly physical force under such circumstances only in defense of person as prescribed in section 53a-19.

    carry is a concern also... >> then click on the state of CT
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2020
  11. KVFirearmTalk

    KVFirearmTalk New Member

    I understand. I am looking for opinions as there is no ironclad legal flowchart of "what ifs". As I understand it, someone throwing a rock at my window is not a justified use of deadly force.

    What PROBABLY is a justified use of deadly force is:
    1. Attempted arson
    2. Someone smashing in my door to gain entry
    3. Someone shooting into my house

    I probably also have a duty to warn the perps that I intend to use deadly force.
    towboater and bluez like this.
  12. G66enigma

    G66enigma Well-Known Member

    I have a hard time believing that would be a stipulation in the statutes, no matter what state.

    Fact is, a violent perp ought to know full well he/she is doing wrong, is threatening your life, and you've every right to defend it when necessary.

    Of course, you're correct when recognizing states vary in the level of insanity they've codified into the statutes. With all sorts of "ifs" and "buts" as to when and where and how they'll tolerate "violence" being done upon another. Know your state's laws exceedingly well. And, if still concerned in the least, I'd strongly recommend speaking with a competent attorney who's well-versed and experienced in the defense laws in that state.

    Acquaint yourself, too, with the "reasonableness" standard in your state's self-defense, defense of a person and defense of property statutes. Every state words it differently.

    But, generally speaking, nearly all the state statutes out there require one to have reasonable concern over loss of life or limb, and to take reasonable action to keep that from happening.

    The key is, obviously, what's deemed legally "reasonable" doesn't get to be decided by you, in the end. It's decided by the district attorney in your county, by politics, and by the jury (if it goes that far).

    Do what you can to ensure your actions and behaviors are "reasonable" to a degree they'll swallow fully. Else it could be one of the most expensive missteps ever. DA's, judges and attorneys have a long history of stringing people out to dry over "violence" despite clear evidence all they did was to defend their lives and property. As though any participants in violence are somehow equal perpetrators (which is a towering crock of manure, IMO). Down that road, there be dragons ... clad in the suits of attorneys wanting another "notch on the rifle."
    bluez and primer1 like this.
  13. Nmwabbit

    Nmwabbit Well-Known Member

    number 3 is in my humble opinion questionable do you wish to engage in a shootout at the OK Corral type situation with the possibility of hitting innocents?

    as for duty to warn this individual was not able to find any mandate so...nope -- tis a movie mantra to enhance the action for the audience!
  14. microadventure

    microadventure Well-Known Member

    24 video cameras. you are on at least 2, and up to 5 cameras, anywhere. everything runs off 12 volts except the monitors. one monitor in each room runs off 12 volts
    450 feet from state highway to house. property is landlocked by another large property. a dozen houses closer to the road. don't play that you need to use the phone bs.
    house is blacked out. at night you can not see it from the road. if you know the house is there you cased it in the daylight.
    doors are hardened. I replaced the rinky dink metal strap door strikes with 7075 T6 3/8 X 3" aluminum angle. it takes a whole day to make one, on a retirement work schedule. looking for flat metal strap to reinforce the door jambs. hinge pins riveted - you are not getting in that way
    security screen doors let me lock up with ventilation. Best ( brand ) locks - 15 mushroom pins. IMHO, better than Medeco
    850 nm floodlights everywhere - the dim red glow when seen up close variety. I see you long before you see anything.
    PA system. 75 watts. I talk to you, all the neighbors hear, despite them being 150 yards away.

    basically, you show yourself for a fool if you try. The first half dozen things a burglar would try have been blocked. you are at a serious disadvantage. In New Mexico. old fashioned notions about self reliance. a classic case of "you picked the wrong house".

    my threshold will be: violent entry techniques indicates violent intent, multiple assailants must be terminated, because you can safely turn your attention from a dead assailant and no other, and it is unreasonable to expect a self defender to count and keep track of multiple assailants. ergo, fire until motion is no longer detected.
    primer1 and 7.62 Man like this.
  15. Ghost1958

    Ghost1958 Well-Known Member

    States are different.
    Ky if a person is attempting to burn my dwelling or ANY outbuildings lethal force is legal.
    No idea about CT.

    Been quiet here though.
    A few suspicious looking critters wearing masks going across the yard at night is all.

    And real toothy couple that climbed the bird feeders but that's it.
    towboater, austin92 and KVFirearmTalk like this.
  16. Ghost1958

    Ghost1958 Well-Known Member

    Hope your fire dept is quick if you draw the line at violent entry. And your walls bullet proof.
    Ain't everything goes down the way you decree it will.
    G66enigma and Nmwabbit like this.
  17. Nmwabbit

    Nmwabbit Well-Known Member

    oh they are putting out other fires in the community...
    Ghost1958 likes this.
  18. Pasquanel

    Pasquanel Proud to be an American Supporter

    If attacked I will shoot, I'll deal with the consequences while still alive!
  19. Ghost1958

    Ghost1958 Well-Known Member

    I dont really look to be attacked over the recent upheaval in my neck of the boonies
    Personally I'm to a point in my life where dead or living doesnt make much difference . But I guess I'm just grumpy enough to make someone trying to do me in work for it.