Firearms / Media / Personal Defense

“Castle Doctrine” No Free Pass

While all the cool kids are settling into their hotels in Las Vegas for the SHOT Show, because I had to cancel my trip to the show I spent part of tonite channel surfing. I landed on a re-run of Dateline NBC called “Deadly Exchange.”

The episode focused on the case of a German high school exchange student who was shot and killed by a homeowner in Missoula, Montana.

The student was inside the homeowners’ garage at the time, perhaps “garage shopping” for beer. The homeowner shot and killed the intruder. And the homeowner was put on trial for murder.

Of course there was more to the story than that, otherwise it would not have made it on Dateline. Of interest to me was the issue posed to the jurors by the prosecutor in closing arguments, seen in the picture below.

As I have written previously, the homeowner was convicted of murder and sentenced to 70 years in prison. Castle Doctrine notwithstanding. It is no free pass. 

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6 thoughts on ““Castle Doctrine” No Free Pass

  1. Pingback: “Castle Doctrine” No Free Pass | Brittius

  2. From an earlier post by David: :”…Moreover, even though George Zimmerman was acquitted by a jury, most civilian gun trainers would not hold him up as a model of armed citizenship. In fact, if anything, he is a model of what not to do…”

    When I took my CHL class, that case and several others came up. Sadly, gun politics took precedence over impartial analysis in looking at those cases. I still think that training is an extremely valuable commodity for anyone who wants to use a firearm in self defense, concealed carry or otherwise. Training should not be a way to keep people from exercising their Second Amendment rights but rather a way of empowering them to do so wisely. Just as we teach people rhetoric so they can empower themselves with the 1A, we need to teach people to empower themselves when exercising the Second.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’ve always looked at it this way. You would not hand the keys to a vehicle without training. Yet people will gift or buy firearms with no training at all. I am a strong supporter of the 2A however I am also a supporter of training.

      Liked by 2 people

  3. Something the press almost always gets wrong, as most don’t do any research but simply buy the gun control narrative from anti-gun organizations and politicians. As we all know, “Castle Doctrine” and “Stand Your Ground,” which they frequently conflate, simply remove the duty to retreat. All other requirements of justification remain.

    What I find especially disheartening is when law enforcement and prosecutors, who should know better, repeat the same clap-trap. Many seem to take it personally that the requirement easiest to prove/disprove, that the accused somehow had a “safe escape,” has been denied them by SYG reforms.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Retreat should not be a duty as much as an option. Training is where discussions of such ideas and strategies for identifying how much of a threat one is facing and what one’s options are can elaborated. I think what it boils down to is most if not all of us would prefer to be judged by twelve than carried by six, to use that old saw, but if there is a third way, defusing a situation, that needs to be considered.

      I worked my way through college as a security guard on campus so had several times where I had to think on my feet in touchy situations. That came in handy once when I was armed and facing an angry man who took offense at my driving and ran me off the road, jumped out of his pickup truck and took a couple angry steps towards me. Big guy, and I am a little guy. I unzipped my coat so he could see I was armed but at the same time apologized profusely for the alleged infraction even though I knew he was overstating his case; I also kept a distance between us. My first job that minute was to calm him down and defuse the situation. I could mutter under my breath that he was an asshole later. It worked. He left and I went about my business and he his business.

      I wonder how many confrontations could be avoided if people simply wanted to avoid them.

      Liked by 1 person

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