Defense of Property
WHAT IS PERMITTED WHEN IT COMES TO DEFENDING YOUR OWN PROPERTY IN LOS ANGELES COUNTY?
In general, it is rarely ever appropriate to use deadly force to defend your property. The law was set in cement related to cases where people used a set spring gun to go off when someone broke in their property, that was not being occupied at the time. Once the door of the cabin was opened, the spring gun would go off and potentially inflicted serious injury or death. This was determined to be unreasonable and many other cases followed that basically said a person could not use deadly force to defend their property. However, as in most things in life, there are always exceptions to any rule and there are factual situations that have presented themselves over the years that have permitted deadly force, especially in one’s own home.
For example, if someone breaks into another person home while the home is actually occupied, then this could definitely be a circumstance where deadly force could be used. As long as the person who uses deadly force can mount an argument that they feared for their own life or the life of another or both, they will likely be justified in using deadly force if someone broken into their home and presented a danger to them and their family. If, on the other hand, the person who broke into the subject home was running away with property, then it would not be permissible to shot at them. Only the police will usually have the right to shot at or use deadly force to stop a fleeing felon.
WHAT CAN YOU LEGALLY DO IF SOMEONE IS THREATENING OR STEALING YOUR PROPERTY?
This issue comes up all the time in criminal defense and it usually centers around reasonableness. If someone is trying to steal your property, you can do what is reasonable under the circumstances to stop them. Department stores make citizen arrests all the time when someone is caught taking their property. The police are then contacted and the person is arrested and charged by the prosecutors. If you are a shop / store owner, it is always best to let the police handle things if you can. If you find yourself in a criminal case based on trying to protect your own property, I encourage you to give me a call and we can sit down and talk about what can be done to defend you. As a person that is trying to make an honest living, you have many rights and defenses that can be used to help you!
If you believe that you have acted reasonably when it comes to defending your hard earned property, we can sit down and discuss what can be done to assist you. I will tell you the truth about what I believe your chances are and what strategies can be employed to make sure you are treated fairly and end up with a result that reflects what you did and what you were confronted with at the time of the alleged crime. One of our objectives will be to educate you on the law and give you a sense of control back. Click here to schedule your free face to face consultation.