When is it legal to brandish a firearm?


tattedupboy

Thank God I'm alive!
So I guess that the subject of this thread should be, "When is it legal to to point a firearm at someone?", since we all agree that "brandishing" is never legal, although pointing it to stop an attacker is.
 

gdcleanfun

Banned
So I guess that the subject of this thread should be, "When is it legal to to point a firearm at someone?", since we all agree that "brandishing" is never legal, although pointing it to stop an attacker is.

I do like that question. Yet, because the definitions probably differ by state, maybe we could further ask what the laws are state by state? I believe that this was Ishi's original thought. Brandishing is not legal. Using a weapon in self defense is. The law in my state does not say that I have to pull a trigger, or fire, or throw or send a projectile outward. It might be legal to hold someone at gunpoint in Nevada, but not in Montana. (I'm just picking states out of the air, IDK for certain.)
 
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tattedupboy

Thank God I'm alive!
I do like that question. Yet, because the definitions probably differ by state, maybe we could further ask what the laws are state by state? I believe that this was Ishi's original thought. Brandishing is not legal. Using a weapon in self defense is. The law in my state does not say that I have to pull a trigger, or fire, or throw or send a projectile outward. It might be legal to hold someone at gunpoint in Nevada, but not in Montana. (I'm just picking states out of the air, IDK for certain.)

Good point. Anyway, whether it's called brandishing or something else, what we do know is that the overwhelming majority of defensive firearm uses every year in the U.S. do not result in any shots being fired, according to John Lott, author of More Guns, Less Crime.
 

Stratus41298

New member
In CT it's the same idea. Basically, if you brandish, it better be in the defense of life. If you reasonably suspect that your life or the lives of others are in danger of death or serious injury you have the right to draw. I like the idea of "serious injury" because it leaves it open to different ideas. Maybe the guy had a bottle in his hand or a bat? It also states that the mere threat of serious harm is legally enough to detain the person using a reasonable amount of force. So if the guy says, "I'm gonna get my bat and kill you!" but doesn't even own a bat, you still have the right to draw right there and detain him until the police arrive. Maybe not such a great case to prove, but i'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by six.

"I was in fear of my life" .......... A mantra a day will keep the lawyers away :)
 

CathyInBlue

Tool Maker
I've searched the Indiana Code website and can't find anything with the word "brandish" at all, so I tried various searches on "display firearm", "show firearm", "visible firearm", "see firearm", and still got nothing, so I just started searching more genericly on the terms firearm, gun, weapon, "deadly thing", and as far as I can tell, Indiana has absolutely no law regarding the display of a firearm, whether justifiably as in self-defense, or unlawfully, as in the commission of a crime.
 

Boomboy007

New member
Sorry, but I find that a bit hard to believe....

In a professional capacity i've had to draw my weapon several times (Security not a LEO) once was while off duty but on a property contracted by the company. I was on property speaking with a guard about their schedule (salary sucks)...anywho I heard shots and figured it was off property but checked anyway and called on duty staff over

.well there it was in a populated metro city 2 men were shooting a rifle at cars passing on a very busy interstate. I was carrying and without thinking took them down at gun-point in plain clothes. I immediately called 9-1-1 and officers were there in about 10 minutes, by this time I had cleared the rifle- set it on top of my car, patted down the subjects and re-holstered my weapon.

When PD Arrived I got plenty of thank you's and ego-boosters not a single comment about "brandishing". I don't know if this is because I was Security for the property and just off duty or if it was because I possibly stopped them from killing someone. I also received commendation from my employer and the Police Dept.

In my experience the law varies from cop to cop, and if they don't write you a citation then you probably aren't going to be charged...

(I am not a lawyer, don't listen to me)

Sorry, but I have to doubt the veracity of this story. In my time on the force, the one thing that I HATED more than anything was someone f***ing around with evidence. While I would be dubious of you sneaking up on two snipers, I am CERTAIN that putting your prints all over a piece of evidence, as well as removing a live cartridge from a weapon used in a crime, as well as MOVING a critical piece of evidence, would warrant arrest. Any DA worth his or her salt would have made a very unpleasant example of you. Thus, I call a big BS.
:no:
 

seawolf

New member
Enjoyed reading this thread of posts --- 11 pages at this point. As many of you are probably well aware, many handgun owners are equipping their personal weapons with a trace laser. Many of these lasers are advertised as being a "deterrent" in and of themselves. Has anyone heard where a trace laser has been used **legally** and **effectively** in a self-defense situation? Isn't this brandishing, but at a higher level? Could this be considered assault in some states?
 

Austin

New member
In Oklahoma it is almost never ok to brandish. I have always been trained that if you feel the need to pull a weapon you need to take the shot.

This does not include carrying at work, as I have had to brandish quite a few times on duty.
 

Lanearas

New member
IMO this is a simple question. If you're going to draw on someone, you had better be planning on killing the BG. If, for some reason (we can't predict everything!) the BG sees you drawing and turns tail, you'd better be the first one calling the police to report the incident to avoid a brandishing charge. If the BG doesn't call, who knows who else witnessed the incident, or was caught on some surveillance camera, and might be making the call without the full story behind them.
 

chroode

New member
In Arizona You can point a gun to stop a person in your home or business

Link Removed

13-407. Justification; use of physical force in defense of premises

A. A person or his agent in lawful possession or control of premises is justified in threatening to use deadly physical force or in threatening or using physical force against another when and to the extent that a reasonable person would believe it immediately necessary to prevent or terminate the commission or attempted commission of a criminal trespass by the other person in or upon the premises.

B. A person may use deadly physical force under subsection A only in the defense of himself or third persons as described in sections 13-405 and 13-406.

C. In this section, "premises" means any real property and any structure, movable or immovable, permanent or temporary, adapted for both human residence and lodging whether occupied or not.

I love Arizona. :biggrin:
 

KimberSniper

KimberSniper
Brandishing is classified as an unnecessary display of your gun and should never occur. The only time a weapon should be drawn is in defense of life and when your ready to take anothers life in that defense.

I assume you mean in a threatening way......

Are you "brandishing" if you are showing your friends your firearm in a safe manner? :)
 
I assume you mean in a threatening way......

Are you "brandishing" if you are showing your friends your firearm in a safe manner? :)

Using the definition of brandish: to wave menacingly, I guess I'm talking about in a threatening way. :smile:
I wouldn't consider showing friends your firearms an "unnecessary" display.
 

todd

todd
First- know the Law, Deadly force and the responsibility of carrying. 1) if you carry a firearm then you have an intent if something happens to use it. 2) If you draw your weapon, it should be to use it. I am a strong believer that if/when I draw my weapon it is to fire, not threaten, not to intimidate, but to put the threat down and away, PERIOD!! If you carry a weapon, you better get your mind around it.
 

fredmaidment

Individuals Rule
I have a problem with brandishing laws in general. Deliberately pointing your weapon at someone or in a threatening manner should be illegal, unless acting self defense. However, simply displaying your weapon shouldn't be a crime. If I have my weapon sitting on the table next to me while I eat, I am legally brandishing, but not a threat to anyone until and unless I pick up that weapon.

Unfortunately, too many people see it differently.
 

Boomboy007

New member
Sadly, you're right.

I have a problem with brandishing laws in general. Deliberately pointing your weapon at someone or in a threatening manner should be illegal, unless acting self defense. However, simply displaying your weapon shouldn't be a crime. If I have my weapon sitting on the table next to me while I eat, I am legally brandishing, but not a threat to anyone until and unless I pick up that weapon.

Unfortunately, too many people see it differently.

These are the same people that imbue emotional characteristics to inanimate devices. A firearm is no more evil than a hammer or a pen. They are merely tools that, in an evil persons hand, can do extreme damage.

Maybe we should outlaw evil. Oh, wait........:wacko:
 
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echo6actual

Shooter
Play It How It Goes

When we have to consider all the what if's the act of letting the fool know you are armed can go either way.

State laws are full of a lot of technical B.S. in the sense that if you see some weirdo in a dark parking lot

lingering around your car. All you want to do is go home in one piece so you draw your weapon and hold it

next to your leg. In my state this could be legally construed as criminal

wrecklessness! @#$#@%. I say if you feel nervous, skin your smoke

wagon. Don't aim and squeeze just yet (unless the weirdo makes a sure

move, and you know you have too). Just keep it close to your thigh it

looses the silhouette of the weapon, especially at night. Furthermore, if it

turns out to be nothing and someone runs to the cops you can

always say it was a cellphone(it works for the police to kill someone, why

can't it work for you to be on the safe side you have not shot anyone yet)

or something else. Play this one how it goes. Follow your gut.

Just displaying the weapon for the sake of displaying is not a good idea.

However, if someone seems like they are up to harming you displaying the

fact that you are not an easy target and they will catch hot lead in their

chest can be an excellent deterrent. You have to be willing to shoot if the

situation escalates. It is a hard heart that kills, not the weapon. In closing,

If you feel nervous skin your smoke wagon, I need you

tomorrow. Drawing is a case by case scenario, with no 100% guarantees :unsure:

PLAY IT HOW IT GOES
 

TatankaGap

New member
I believe there are about 3 million Defensive Gun Uses per year in the US and 85% of them involve brandishing in self-defense ~
 

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