What did this guy do wrong?


M. Todd Bayliss
Opinions please on this please...

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The defendant was found guilty. I'm wondering what his mistakes were. Alabama does have a castle law, however I'm guessing that the mace was not considered a deadly weapon and therefore he was not in imminent danger. I think his correct course of action should have been to move inside and call the cops which he couldn't because of the underage drinking.

The article doesn't give a lot of details, however, if there was no imminent danger then swinging the sword was probably the wrong thing. Why the victim can't continue his plans to attend college is strange. This is an example of why I support "no carry under the influence" laws. Any time alcohol is involved, good judgment isn't always there.
There are a couple of other articles about the case,

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but they are all thin on details. Apparently West (the receiver of the slashing) showed up in court looking like he just got out of church. It was reported that several of the witnesses had trouble identifying him in the court room because he was so "cleaned up". His lawyers portrayed him as a pillar of the community cut down in his prime.

Hosting an underage kegger without the parental units around certainly didn't help the self-defense position. You do have to use the sense you were born with to at least try to stay out of trouble. Going out looking for trouble is what the LEO's do (and don't get paid near enough for).

It does raise an interesting question of what are your options if attacked with mace or pepper spray? After he sprays you, you're blinded and then don't know whether he's a lethal threat or not.
His mistake was going inside then back outside it seems. Had the sword been in his possession and the assailant came after him with mace, it would have probably been better for him but he would have still been in trouble.

I'm in IN and I have to be in danger of losing my life or great physical danger either from a deadly weapon or a sheer size difference between the bad guy and me or if I happen to know for a fact he is a master or martial arts or something (I believe that is considered danger enough as well.)

A lot of states require you retreat. And, regardless of whether or not you retreat, coming outside to an assailant who has mace and confronting him with a sword is almost illegal in itself.

Running outside and telling the assailt to buzz off would have been (more than likely) the extent of what the now defendant could have legally done.

He should have probably smacked the assailant with the flat side or backside of the sword first. I wouldn't want to use a sword on someone. That just screams "nuts" to a jury.

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