justifiable homicide???


ASC1WBullock

New member
In the state of Washington, when a intruder is in your residence and has just spotted you and you have just spotted him. What is the legal action besides calling 911? Am I justified in engaging or no? Having this conversation with some LEO friends and I'm curious to this answer.
 

shooter

New member
Your question is too vague...and, the answer is based on a number of circumstances.

If he has a gun and is pointing it at you, it is reasonable to believe you are in immediate fear of serious bodily harm or death. In most states, that is reason enough to use deadly force.

If he is just standing there, with the gun at his side, not saying anything...you might not be justified (in your state) in using deadly force. On the other hand, some states have passed laws that basically say if someone is in your home - even unarmed - and not an overt threat, it is reasonable to believe that they are there to do harm and you may be justified in use of deadly force.

If he has a knife/baseball bat/tire iron, is he holding it in a threatening manner? Is he making a move towards you? Even if he is not moving towards you, is he saying anything that indicates you should be in immediate fear of serious bodily harm or death? If so, in most jurisdictions it is reasonable to use deadly force to stop his actions.

I could go on and on...but, as you can see, there is no simple, direct answer.

Bottom line...if you can articulate in front of a jury that based on the moment you chose to shoot someone, was he doing/saying something that you believed put you in immediate threat of serious bodily harm or death, you will probably be OK.

No matter what, you need to ensure that your actions were in line with your state's "justifiable homicide" statute.
 

NavyLCDR

New member
All that is required is a reasonable belief that a felony is intended to be committed:

RCW 9A.16.050
Homicide — By other person — When justifiable.



*** CHANGE IN 2011 *** (SEE 5045.SL) ***

Homicide is also justifiable when committed either:

(1) In the lawful defense of the slayer, or his or her husband, wife, parent, child, brother, or sister, or of any other person in his presence or company, when there is reasonable ground to apprehend a design on the part of the person slain to commit a felony or to do some great personal injury to the slayer or to any such person, and there is imminent danger of such design being accomplished; or

(2) In the actual resistance of an attempt to commit a felony upon the slayer, in his presence, or upon or in a dwelling, or other place of abode, in which he is.

Residential burglary is a felony:

RCW 9A.52.025
Residential burglary.



*** CHANGE IN 2011 *** (SEE 5891-S.SL) ***

(1) A person is guilty of residential burglary if, with intent to commit a crime against a person or property therein, the person enters or remains unlawfully in a dwelling other than a vehicle.

(2) Residential burglary is a class B felony. In establishing sentencing guidelines and disposition standards, the sentencing guidelines commission and the juvenile disposition standards commission shall consider residential burglary as a more serious offense than second degree burglary.

and

RCW 9A.52.040
Inference of intent.


In any prosecution for burglary, any person who enters or remains unlawfully in a building may be inferred to have acted with intent to commit a crime against a person or property therein, unless such entering or remaining shall be explained by evidence satisfactory to the trier of fact to have been made without such criminal intent.

Any other questions?

Your question is too vague...and, the answer is based on a number of circumstances.

The Revised Code of Washington says differently.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
So if the intruder is in the home and at the time notices the home owner and at that time turns and heads out of the bedroom and down the hall towards a child's room but also towards an exit. Isn't against the law to shoot the intruder in the back. I mean, in this situation I would shoot to stop the advancement towards my kids room. Am I wrong on this thinking?
 

NavyLCDR

New member
So if the intruder is in the home and at the time notices the home owner and at that time turns and heads out of the bedroom and down the hall towards a child's room but also towards an exit. Isn't against the law to shoot the intruder in the back. I mean, in this situation I would shoot to stop the advancement towards my kids room. Am I wrong on this thinking?

In my opinion, and I am not a lawyer, the prosecution would have to prove that any reasonable person would know the subject was fleeing and intended to exit, without committing a felony in the process, when the subject was shot - such as if the person was two steps from the front door, empty handed, moving towards the door when shot.

In your case where the subject is deep inside the house and there are other occupants between the subject and the exit - I think you would be justified - no reasonable person could presume to know what the intentions of the subject were, they may be heading to the kitchen to obtain a knife, they may be retreating to a location in the house where they know their partner is.
 

Nightmare45

NRA LIFE MEMBER
In my house the answer would be allow one or both of the dogs to continue the attack approach carefully with weapon in hand shotgun or pistol while verifing BG had no weapon, call 911 and tell them come quick bring ambulance as two 90 pound dogs are busy, issue stop command to dogs after contact with LEO and cover BG till police arrive, any additional violent or agressive act by BG, release dogs seek cover and cover BG with weapon until police arrive (this for folks who believe police can protect you) with average response time of 17-20 minutes divided by two large dogs that gives the BG a chance to make peace with the Lord.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
It seems like there are so many loop holes in the RCW on this subject. Don't know if protecting our family is a concern of the courts as much as placing someone in prison. Seems like laws are protecting criminals more the good citizens.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
Nightmare45, I agree with you if I had two dogs but then you have these fools who would try to sue you for having your dogs attacking. I mean I have seen some stupid cases of victims being sued by criminals families who have been shot or hurt while they were committing a crime.
 

NavyLCDR

New member
It seems like there are so many loop holes in the RCW on this subject. Don't know if protecting our family is a concern of the courts as much as placing someone in prison. Seems like laws are protecting criminals more the good citizens.

I'm sorry, I'm just not seeing any loopholes that protect the criminal. The law says that if someone breaks into your house, you can lawfully immediately assume that their intent is to commit a felonious crime against you. The law then says that if there is intent to commit a felonious crime against you in your home you can legally shoot the person. Where's the loophole for the criminal?

Heck, Washington will even pay your legal expenses if you have to defend yourself in court and are found not guilty by reason of self-defense:

RCW 9A.16.110
Defending against violent crime — Reimbursement.
(2) When a person charged with a crime listed in subsection (1) of this section is found not guilty by reason of self-defense, the state of Washington shall reimburse the defendant for all reasonable costs, including loss of time, legal fees incurred, and other expenses involved in his or her defense. This reimbursement is not an independent cause of action. To award these reasonable costs the trier of fact must find that the defendant's claim of self-defense was sustained by a preponderance of the evidence. If the trier of fact makes a determination of self-defense, the judge shall determine the amount of the award.

Where's the loophole for the criminal?
 

G50AE

Active member
No CCW Badge Required

I'm sorry, I'm just not seeing any loopholes that protect the criminal. The law says that if someone breaks into your house, you can lawfully immediately assume that their intent is to commit a felonious crime against you. The law then says that if there is intent to commit a felonious crime against you in your home you can legally shoot the person. Where's the loophole for the criminal?

Heck, Washington will even pay your legal expenses if you have to defend yourself in court and are found not guilty by reason of self-defense:

And you don't even need to don one of those silly CCW Badges.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
NavyLCD I see where you're coming from and I am grateful for your opinion on the matter and RCW's you put on here. I was looking more into letting these criminals families come with lawsuits against the victims.
 

manawela

New member
I'm from Hawaii one of the most liberal criminal protecting states and basically we apply the reasonable person rule.
1. You are in your home where you legally are allowed to posess your handgun.
2. He is illegaly in your home.
3. If he runs away, about all you can do grab him and hold him down, cant shoot him because he is no threat with his back towards you and he is running away. You might get away with it if he is running in the direction where loved ones are located but wont be easy.
4. But if he comes at you, even unarmed, you can justify shooting him, mostly because you have a weapon (which you legaly are allowed to posess in your home). In a scuffle you can be reasonably afraid he may take it away from you and harm you or your family. So the only option is to shoot the f...er.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
He enters my home and I awaken to him in my doorway of my room. My only thought is stopping his advancement anywhere else in my home. Just yesterday a friend told me he would yell get out of my house. To me your saying go to someone elses house and do it with that command. If a bg is in your home, then his intentions are more than likely not good at all.
 

santa

santa
NavyLCDR is correct. I looked up the laws. I live here in Washington but some other states MAY have different laws. In MY OPINION if I came in contact with a person who had broken into my house, while he still in my house, I would be fearful for my life and my families' lives' and act to STOP THE THREAT.
 

ASC1WBullock

New member
Santa you hit it on the head along with NavyLCDR. I think the bg in someone's home, no matter if the door was unlocked or not, is coming into the home with bad intentions.
 

Tucker's Mom

New member
I'm from Hawaii one of the most liberal criminal protecting states and basically we apply the reasonable person rule.
1. You are in your home where you legally are allowed to posess your handgun.
2. He is illegaly in your home.
3. If he runs away, about all you can do grab him and hold him down, cant shoot him because he is no threat with his back towards you and he is running away. You might get away with it if he is running in the direction where loved ones are located but wont be easy.
4. But if he comes at you, even unarmed, you can justify shooting him, mostly because you have a weapon (which you legaly are allowed to posess in your home). In a scuffle you can be reasonably afraid he may take it away from you and harm you or your family. So the only option is to shoot the f...er.

First and foremost, WELCOME to our world here!

Here in MO we have a good castle doctrine. This is MY home. Strangers are NOT welcome, especially in the middle of the night.
 

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