Wednesday, March 29, 2006

So We Need More Killings in Alabama?

Having read the statutes on self-defense, and handled several cases, even winning a few, Alabama already has solid laws that allow a person to protect themselves and/or their loved ones ... in public places or otherwise. Here's the general law as it stands today!

Code of Alabama, 1975, as amended, Section 13A-3-23
Use of force in defense of a person.

(a) A person is justified in using physical force upon another person in order to defend himself or a third person from what he reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force by that other person, and he may use a degree of force which he reasonably believes to be necessary for the purpose. A person may use deadly physical force if the actor reasonably believes that such other person is:
(1) Using or about to use unlawful deadly physical force;
(2) Using or about to use physical force against an occupant of a dwelling while committing or attempting to commit a burglary of such dwelling; or
(3) Committing or about to commit a kidnapping in any degree, assault in the first or second degree, burglary in any degree, robbery in any degree, forcible rape or forcible sodomy.

(b) Notwithstanding the provisions of subsection (a), a person is not justified in using deadly physical force upon another person if it reasonably appears or he knows that he can avoid the necessity of using such force with complete safety:
(1) By retreating, except that the actor is not required to retreat:
a. If he is in his dwelling or at his place of work and was not the original aggressor; or
b. If he is a peace officer or a private person lawfully assisting a peace officer at his direction.

So for the Governor to now be in a position to sign off on this disaster created by the NRA really bothers me. We have plenty enough killing! I agree that at times "some folks just need killing" as Tom Radney argues like no other counselor I've seen while still couching it as "self-defense". To remove the duty to retreat in public when it can be done safely (which of course usually works better for bystanders!) seems hardly wise. We teach our kids to avoid trouble and learn that at times avoiding a fight is the best idea. I certainly don't want to walk my child out of the Big Box Mart into a gun battle that could have been avoided ... or at least saved for a more private setting.

I've handled a murder case where a person shot a bystander. Most folks can't shoot worth a damn under pressure and I think the last thing we need is some macho half-wit slinging lead around me or my family. Watch and hide on this one if it becomes law ... as somebody innocent is going to die because Goat Hill politicos were pandering to the gun vote!

Human life is especially precious as a fetus in Alabama! Peace ... or War!