Alcohol and Home Defense


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lpsharp88
March 6, 2013, 01:47 AM
I was curious if the presence of alcohol in your system after a home defense situation had an adverse effect? My question involves two different scenarios:

1. My BAC is between .01 and the legal limit (.08 in most cases).
2. My BAC is over the legal limit (>.08 in most cases)

Specifically: Does the presence of alcohol in my system make proving self defense tougher? Assuming that I am cleared by the police of any wrongdoing, does the presence of alcohol in my system make me more susceptible to losing a civil case?

I definitely don't anticipate this happening, it is just something that I have always wondered about.

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Sport45
March 6, 2013, 03:17 AM
1. My BAC is between .01 and the legal limit (.08 in most cases).


The closer to 0.0 you are the better off you'll be. It may affect a civil case if they can determine (or cause others to suspect) your ability to discern a real threat was compromised.

2. My BAC is over the legal limit (>.08 in most cases)


In this case I strongly recommend appointing a designated defender and not having firearms accessible to the drinkers.

Guns and alcohol don't mix. Ever.

MedWheeler
March 6, 2013, 07:03 AM
Typically, no, but it does depend on the political climate in your locale. It all depends on what the alcohol content can be implied to have influenced you to have done in the time leading up to the event.

Tomcat47
March 6, 2013, 07:12 AM
0 Would be best bet!

I like the "designated defender" Sport45! :D Thats a good one!

And you also have to worry about the news etc. from getting a hold of the fact you had a beer, then digging up a picture of the perpetrator riding a tricycle when he was 10 years old....

Headline:

DRUNKEN GUNS RIGHTS ADVOCATE SHOOTS INNOCENT CHILD :uhoh:

JShirley
March 6, 2013, 07:47 AM
Does anyone have any proof that a "good shoot" in the home has resulted in civil losses due to BAC, or is this all conjecture?

John

Sav .250
March 6, 2013, 08:17 AM
When that type of case is investigated,all factors are in play. Alcohol in your system could be a problem but the bigger issue is if your actions fall with-in
the "stand your ground" perimeters .

mljdeckard
March 6, 2013, 08:32 AM
You still have the right to self-defense when you are drunk. The problem COULD BE, how well do you recall the details? How well can you articulate why you had no other option? Does someone else's story sound more coherent than yours? Do the police have something more to work with than one body with holes in it, and another body still breathing vodka fumes?

jmorris
March 6, 2013, 08:47 AM
Does anyone have any proof that a "good shoot" in the home has resulted in civil losses due to BAC, or is this all conjecture?

John
Anything can happen in a civil suit. Like OJ's first pass through the system, acquitted on two counts of murder. 3 years later lost the civil case because of a preponderance of evidence to hold him liable for damages, of the people he was acquitted of killing...

mljdeckard
March 6, 2013, 09:06 AM
But some states make a civil suit much more difficult than others. In Utah, if you are 'no billed' for a criminal charge in a self-defense case, you are immune from civil liability.

beatledog7
March 6, 2013, 09:29 AM
So, if I'm having a couple of beers with my order-in pizza when the guy breaks in, and the worst case scenario proves unavoidable, I'm going to have a tougher time defending myself because I was doing something completely legal when I had to pull the trigger?

If that's the case, then a person who keeps a firearm for home defense better not have a drink at home, ever.

Pilot
March 6, 2013, 10:26 AM
So, if I'm having a couple of beers with my order-in pizza when the guy breaks in, and the worst case scenario proves unavoidable, I'm going to have a tougher time defending myself because I was doing something completely legal when I had to pull the trigger?

If that's the case, then a person who keeps a firearm for home defense better not have a drink at home, ever.


I am interested in hearing responses to this as well. I don't typically drink much alcohol, but I do know that in the world of litigation, the prosecution will try to use anything they can to thwart a defense of a good shoot.

As you say, drinking alcohol while in your own home is LEGAL. Is defending yourself while performing a legal act, illegal, or at the very least open you up to more risk of prosecution, and having to spend money in legal fees for defense?

Another question. Is intoxication (BAC above .08) in the home legal while handling a firearm for self defense purposes? I am sure this is a state, by state issue, but it does beg the question, should you allow yourself to be legally intoxicated even in your own home? Hmmm.

Arkansas Paul
March 6, 2013, 10:48 AM
It is an interesting thought.
I don't see where having a few drinks in your own home would have anything to do with whether or not a crime was comitted, but then again, I'm not the one calling the shots.
Another question is, even if you have been drinking a little, if you're not obviously intoxicated, would they even test you? I don't know.

JFtheGR8
March 6, 2013, 10:50 AM
I'm no attorney. I would say if an intruder broke in to your home and you had reason to believe your life was in danger (they were presenting a weapon) then you have a right to defense BAC or not. Just make sure the intruder can't testify to the contrary (ie dead). So if alcohol is going to impair your ability to permanently decommission said intruder then stay sober. It's sad to say but a civil suit brought by the deceased's family would cost less than one from a permanently disabled would be thief/rapist/murderer. Yes, I realize Castle Doctrine in some states allows for deadly force whether the intruder is armed or not but that wasn't mentioned in the OP.


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Frank Ettin
March 6, 2013, 11:13 AM
Does anyone have any proof that a "good shoot" in the home has resulted in civil losses due to BAC, or is this all conjecture?Let's say that based on my professional knowledge and experience I would expect in a close case that any use by the actor of any drug or substance which affects judgment and/or perception to be a potential issue.

Claiming self defense puts the actor's judgment and perception at issue. The actor's use of alcohol, marijuana, or even prescription medication which could impair his judgment or perception will raise a question of the reasonableness of his assessment that there was a threat warranting a response with lethal force.

Of course a lot depends on exactly what happened and how it happened. If all the evidence is consistent and firmly establishes that under the circumstances the justification for the use of lethal force was clear, alcohol/drug use won't be an issue. But to the extent that the evidence suggests that the actor may have overreacted, misunderstood the situation, made a significant mistake in his assessment of the need for force, or used excessive force, alcohol of drug use could become an issue.

Maybe a few drinks won't hurt you in court, but it sure isn't going to help.

beatledog7
March 6, 2013, 01:14 PM
Well now there's a sticky wicket. A person who's on some sort of prescription meds can expect to have that come into play when he or she has to defend his or her life? Some prosecutor is going to insist that he or she was impaired and therefore could not have known beyond doubt that his or her life was in danger?

Imagine the courtroom scenario:

Pros: "So, Mr. X, you're an expert on the possible side-effects of [insert med]. Is there any possibility, no matter how remote, that the defendant's regular dosage of [insert med] could have been, at the time when she ruthlessly blew away my client's sweet little teenage son for no reason, compromised to any small degree in her ability to know right from wrong?"

PD: "I object to this characterization."

Judge: "Sustained. The prosecution will refrain from such characterizations; the jury will disregard."

Yeah, sure it will.

Mayvik
March 6, 2013, 01:16 PM
If you're bombed, try throwing up or soiling yourself. The intruder will likely flee.

BSA1
March 6, 2013, 02:01 PM
Just make sure the intruder can't testify to the contrary (ie dead).

Well it started out being informative thread before it turned to tripe like this.

JFtheGR8
March 6, 2013, 02:27 PM
Just make sure the intruder can't testify to the contrary (ie dead).

Well it started out being informative thread before it turned to tripe like this.

So, you use deadly force to wound? I don't think that would fly. That's my thought on what I posted. If you're impaired the slightest bit a prosecutor will have a field day with you and make you responsible for the long term care of your would be attacker. Sorry i didn't phrase it to your liking. Tripe? Your opinion and you know what they say about those.


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Arkansas Paul
March 6, 2013, 02:39 PM
So, you use deadly force to wound? I don't think that would fly.

No, we wouldn't use deadly force to wound. Nor would we use deadly force to kill. We would use it to stop the immediate threat to our lives or the lives of innocents.

This is The High Road. We don't advocate intentionally killing someone. We advocate stopping threats.

Talking about making sure someone is dead is not only low road, but it's chest thumping BS talk.

JFtheGR8
March 6, 2013, 03:12 PM
Quote:

So, you use deadly force to wound? I don't think that would fly.

No, we wouldn't use deadly force to wound. Nor would we use deadly force to kill. We would use it to stop the immediate threat to our lives or the lives of innocents.

This is The High Road. We don't advocate intentionally killing someone. We advocate stopping threats.

Talking about making sure someone is dead is not only low road, but it's chest thumping BS talk.

Not advocating killing, didn't mean to make it sound as such. Using deadly force to stop a threat IS attempting to kill your attacker since your target would be vital organs in the chest and/or head. Of course once the threat is neutralized you no longer would be justified to continue with deadly force. I by no means meant you should stand over the perp and pump more rounds into them. If you're impaired or an attorney can influence a jury of such you very well could end up paying for the long term care of someone you made into a paraplegic/quadriplegic, etc... That could be regardless of how the scenario started. Like I said, I'm no attorney but this is what came to mind when reading the OP. Sorry to offend anyone but I sometimes don't quite get my point across effectively.


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beatledog7
March 6, 2013, 03:19 PM
Using deadly force to stop a threat IS attempting to kill

If that's your perspective, then please think of it as stopping force vice deadly force. A defensive shot is taken only to end the threat. If the attacker dies, so be it, but we don't shoot to kill.

JFtheGR8
March 6, 2013, 03:26 PM
Quote:

Using deadly force to stop a threat IS attempting to kill

If that's your perspective, then please think of it as stopping force vice deadly force. A defensive shot is taken only to end the threat. If the attacker dies, so be it, but we don't shoot to kill.

Point taken. That's why I'm here, to learn and grow.


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armoredman
March 6, 2013, 03:28 PM
Think of it how you will, but each state covers it differently. To wit, in Arizona it's known as Deadly Physical Force.
If I have two beers and end up being forced to use deadly physical force to defend my life or the life of a third person as allowed by law, the actions of the suspect and my actions will be judged under the harsh white light of a jury trial, most likely, (unlike most politicians), and I will face that music when it plays.
As to civil trials, if I am acquitted of the criminal charges or the actions are deemed justified without trial, the Arizona State Constitution now forbids any criminal family/estate from suing me in civil court.

mljdeckard
March 6, 2013, 03:35 PM
It might sound like a ridiculous distinction (And it may well BE so,) but the difference is intent. Shooting someone to kill them is murder. Using deadly force to prevent someone else from killing you may well result in death, but the intent is different. It's also why we tell people not to call 911 and say; "I just shot someone." We say; "There has been a shooting." It's stupid, but it's not our fault we have to do it this way.

dmckean44
March 6, 2013, 03:47 PM
How would they know? It's not a traffic stop, they're not going to make you blow.

Arkansas Paul
March 6, 2013, 03:59 PM
^ Yeah that's what I was saying in my earlier post. If you're not visibly staggering around drunk, I don't see why they would even test you.

mljdeckard
March 6, 2013, 04:16 PM
It would seem to be a routine thing to be on the checklist for any shooting, check for signs of alcohol or drug use, verify further if suspicious.

Texan Scott
March 6, 2013, 04:39 PM
If your decision could be defended as being the same decision any sober and reasonable person would have made in your position, it would be fairly easy to defend. Intoxication to the point of being unable to recall the incident might be a real problem. Of course IMO drinking to that degree of retro/anterograde amnesia with immediate access to firearms is irresponsible. [Flamesuit on]
In some states, especially castle doctrine scenario, a "no bill" writ from a grand jury (ie a decision of justifiability) renders what a civil suit trial lawyer might haggle over a moot issue.

Be responsible - Stay safe.

mljdeckard
March 6, 2013, 04:51 PM
^^I concur entirely.

Bartholomew Roberts
March 6, 2013, 09:34 PM
IIRC, one of the factors in the Mark Abshire case was that both attacker and defender had been drinking. Abshire lost his house, his job, and spent around $200k defending himself as I recall. Alcohol wasn't the only factor; but it certainly made the case tougher for him.

Axctal
March 6, 2013, 09:41 PM
The answer to this is VERY simple:
DO NOT SUBMIT TO ANY TESTS OR GIVE ANY ANSWERS
before talking to a lawyer.
And of course, you can talk to him/her "tomorrow".
You were not driving, they CAN NOT compel you for alcohol test.

Officer's statement like "I think I could smell alcohol" is only one of the data inputs; humans are not calibrated machines to detect chemicals with certainty, also, witnesses statements could be dismissed for variety of reasons.

guyfromohio
March 6, 2013, 09:44 PM
Don't take a breathilizer.

Arkansas Paul
March 6, 2013, 09:52 PM
That's funny that I didn't think of that.
In a traffic stop situation, at least in Arkansas, you are giving implied consent when you sign your papers for your drivers license to submit to a BAC test if you're driving and are pulled over for suspected DWI.
In your home, I guess that wouldn't be the case.
It's still gonna be a sticky situation that I would rather steer clear of.

Birdhunter1
March 6, 2013, 10:08 PM
Just a quick question, does .08 or .1 or whatever the number only refer to operating a vehicle (boat, auto, tractor) on a public thoroughfare? I mean if you are mowing your yard at .02 can they site you for DUI even if you are not in a public space?
If that is the case is there a law in your state that says you cannot possess a firearm if you are intoxicated? And if so do they set a BAC number to it?
I know in Illinois you can't hunt and drink, but I don't think there is a law that says you cannot target shoot on your own property while drinking. I know you are responsible for where your bullets land, but I don't know of any aggravating or mitigating factors of alcohol being involved.

That being said yes a prosecutor will use the fact if you had been drinking or not to his/her advantage, but I do believe the .08 BAC refers to driving/operating and I have not heard it applied to other situations (mowing, target shooting, bedroom activities with your spouse)...

And for what it's worth once I have a drink the mower, tractor, guns, truck etc is parked and done for the day. I suppose I may be in violation of grilling and drinking once in a while.

This all merely meant to ask does .08 BAC (or .10 or whatever) apply to anything other than operating a means of transportation in public spaces.

beatledog7
March 6, 2013, 10:24 PM
Regardless of what the law calls it, to me it's stopping force. Killing is incidental in some cases because the stopping shot works best in body parts that are also vital to life.

As I said before, so be it.

Tomcat47
March 6, 2013, 10:30 PM
Food for thought... I chose years ago when I had children, to not allow Alcohol in my house... It stood that way for over 20 years and they have grown up moved away, and gave me grandchildren.

I always based my decision on "what if they needed me during the night and I had been drinking"? :confused:

Well the same applies now and they too have chosen to not let there children see alcohol in the house. And now my reasons for not having it in the house with the simple "what if" questions still apply....What if my children,grandchildren, parents need me through the night?

And this thread throws the "what if" ? with an all new subject matter.....

Just Sayin..... NOT throwing rocks or condemning no one!
Please do not think that! :)

Frank Ettin
March 6, 2013, 10:56 PM
...This all merely meant to ask does .08 BAC (or .10 or whatever) apply to anything other than operating a means of transportation in public spaces. Yes. Some States have specific BAC limits for carrying a gun. Various laws also set specific limits for other sorts of activities, mostly transportation related (e. g., driving trucks on a commercial license, flying a plane, etc.). I wouldn't be surprised if some States had different specific limits for other activities.

In any case, if a party's judgment or perception is material to some point in contention in the course of litigation, any factor, e. g., alcohol use, drug (illegal or legal) use, fatigue, etc., that could affect judgment or perception could become an issue. Even without a law setting a specific limit for an activity, expert testimony could be introduced with respect to the impairment expected under the circumstances.

lpsharp88
March 6, 2013, 11:32 PM
Man, I love all of the responses. Thanks a lot!

Arkansas Paul
March 7, 2013, 03:10 PM
Just Sayin..... NOT throwing rocks or condemning no one!
Please do not think that!


Nah, you're fine.
It's a choice you have to make for yourself.
There is usually beer in the fridge and burbon in the cabinet at my house. However, at home, I never have more than a couple. I too, have no desire for my daughter to see daddy staggering around acting a fool, or god forbid me need to protect her and me be incapable.

The key to life is moderation, unless you're talking about guns and ammo, then endulgence is necessary. :D

gym
March 9, 2013, 12:00 AM
I am not a drinker anymore, but a home invasion is a home invasion, if someone is breaking in with the intent to do you harm, it should not make a bit of difference, "legally" if you were sober or drunk. It's still a crime to break into a drunk persons house, screw the media, it's legal and that should be enough.
Unless they want to play "do over". You should get extra credit for being able to take down a few bad guys while being half in the bag. You sober up fast in thst type of situation.And you don't lose your rights because you had a few drinks, as long as it's your home.

Onward Allusion
March 9, 2013, 01:33 AM
^^^^THIS!

So many of you lost the OP's criteria...HOME defense. Someone breaks into your home intending on doing you harm, you got the right to stop 'em, regardless of whether you had one OR four drinks.

HankB
March 9, 2013, 07:57 AM
The question of alcohol impairment has often come up on other forums dealing with CHL holders; for example TX law prohibits carrying a concealed weapon while intoxicated, but the CHL law doesn't explicitly define intoxication. Some assert that the drunk driving limit of 0.08% blood alcohol applies, even though people have been cited for intoxicated driving with lower levels. The thing is, there's currently no established case law to resolve what constitutes intoxication for a CHL holder who isn't driving.

BUT . . . as has been pointed out, while driving a car on a public road carries with it the "implied consent" to sobriety testing, there's nothing on the books for defensive gun use. IANAL, but there doesn't seem to be any way for LEOs to compel a sobriety test after a defensive gun use for anyone except a motorist - certainly not for a homeowner.

beatledog7
March 9, 2013, 08:31 AM
In any case, if a party's judgment or perception is material to some point in contention in the course of litigation, any factor, e. g., alcohol use, drug (illegal or legal) use, fatigue, etc., that could affect judgment or perception could become an issue [emphasis added]. Even without a law setting a specific limit for an activity, expert testimony could be introduced with respect to the impairment expected under the circumstances.

If this is the standard we decide to apply, a slick, well-spoken prosecutor could come up with a hundred reasons why any given person should not be able to possess a gun, period. Imagine the arguments: The defendant Mr. Green once spanked a puppy for soiling the rug; he may have anger management issues. The defendant Mrs. Brown went through a difficult divorce and may harbor resentment toward her ex and her ex's lawyer or even men and attorneys in general. The defendant Miss Blue was mugged by a person of a particular ethnic group and could carry latent hatred for members of that group...

Talk about your slippery slope!

Frank Ettin
March 9, 2013, 10:34 AM
In any case, if a party's judgment or perception is material to some point in contention in the course of litigation, any factor, e. g., alcohol use, drug (illegal or legal) use, fatigue, etc., that could affect judgment or perception could become an issue [emphasis added]. Even without a law setting a specific limit for an activity, expert testimony could be introduced with respect to the impairment expected under the circumstances.

If this is the standard we decide to apply, a slick, well-spoken prosecutor could come up with a hundred reasons why any given person should not be able to possess a gun, period. Imagine the arguments: The defendant Mr. Green once spanked a puppy for soiling the rug; he may have anger management issues....Except --

The impairment of judgment and perception by such things as alcohol, certain drugs, fatigue, etc., are well known and can be the subject of expert testimony;


Juries have a sense of proportion, and lawyer tactics building something out of proportion will not be well received; and


Things like impairment from alcohol, drug use, fatigue, etc., or a history of disproportionate or violent displays of anger, or documented and intense racial animus, and the like have been used effectively by lawyers at times.

joeschmoe
March 9, 2013, 02:11 PM
The answer to this is VERY simple:
DO NOT SUBMIT TO ANY TESTS OR GIVE ANY ANSWERS
before talking to a lawyer.
And of course, you can talk to him/her "tomorrow".
You were not driving, they CAN NOT compel you for alcohol test.

Officer's statement like "I think I could smell alcohol" is only one of the data inputs; humans are not calibrated machines to detect chemicals with certainty, also, witnesses statements could be dismissed for variety of reasons.
This. Don't give them any evidence against you. Simple statement that you were in fear for you life and need to talk to a lawyer. Period. No long explanations, don't tell a short version of the story, don't answer questions, don't repeat yourself. Seek medical attention first. Band aid, ambulance or just need to lie down.

You have the right to remain silent. Your ability to to use it requires keeping your lips together.

788Ham
March 9, 2013, 02:40 PM
Thank God I haven't had a single drink in 29 years.

Sport45
March 10, 2013, 09:49 PM
You should get extra credit for being able to take down a few bad guys while being half in the bag. You sober up fast in thst type of situation.

No you don't.

It's like giving a drunk coffee. You just get a wide-awake drunk. Been there, done that. And I don't even like coffee...

That's one thing I'm glad to have outgrown.

k_dawg
March 11, 2013, 06:56 PM
This is another reason why having a strong castle doctrine is important.

If someone clearly broke into your house, then I would not expect significant issue.

However, if it was someone you invited in and an arguement broke out; then one is not covered by the presumption of imminent harm. Domestic arguements often start with abuse of alchohol. One can easily be pegged for this event, and that can steer everything.

Articulation of self defense depends very much on the physical evidence AND your abilities/testimony.

gym
March 12, 2013, 01:23 PM
My lawyer had a Marlin on the wall of the office with a plaque that read,
I Couldn't Keep My Mouth Shut, that pretty well sums it up.

breakingcontact
March 14, 2013, 11:33 AM
And you also have to worry about the news etc. from getting a hold of the fact you had a beer, then digging up a picture of the perpetrator riding a tricycle when he was 10 years old....

If that's the case, we all had better be church deacons and only shoot hyper-violent meth induced 300 lb bikers with a single shot wood and blue shotgun.

I don't hardly drink at all and never at home (if I drink at a restaurant will be one drink only and I don't go to bars) so I don't have to worry about that aspect.

Frank Ettin
March 14, 2013, 12:23 PM
And you also have to worry about the news etc. from getting a hold of the fact you had a beer, then digging up a picture of the perpetrator riding a tricycle when he was 10 years old....

If that's the case, we all had better be church deacons ....Nonetheless it may well be the case. How you might choose to deal with it is, of course, up to you. But pretending that if you use force in self defense you might not be portrayed negatively in the media (and the guy you shot portrayed positively) isn't going to help.

psyopspec
March 14, 2013, 04:27 PM
Just a quick question, does .08 or .1 or whatever the number only refer to operating a vehicle (boat, auto, tractor) on a public thoroughfare?

On the public v. private property issue, it may vary by state. Where I grew up this was asked during driver's ed. Our instructor, who like myself is not a lawyer, basically answered that on your own private property you could be drunk and operating a vehicle so long as you were no danger to others. So if someone had the hankering to get schnookered and race around their own private dirt track until they turned themselves into a grease spot, that's their prerogative.

To address the topic at hand, being inebriated during an HD incident certainly can't help. It may hurt, and as others pointed out this could be especially true if the shooter was blacked out. But again speaking in general terms, if the "reasonable man" standard is met in a fair trial then it theoretically shouldn't matter.

breakingcontact
March 15, 2013, 09:06 AM
Nonetheless it may well be the case. How you might choose to deal with it is, of course, up to you. But pretending that if you use force in self defense you might not be portrayed negatively in the media (and the guy you shot portrayed positively) isn't going to help.

This should affect our defensive firearm choice? Should it affect out tactics? (Just shooting once, not shooting as much as needed to end the threat) The worst would be if you let your fear of being sued/demonized in court to stop you from defending you and yours at all.

Has there been an extensive study done on defensive shooting outcomes both in terms of the actual gun fight and the fallout? I've read a lot of qualitative and often anecdotal accounts of shootings and court battles but it would be interesting and very beneficial to see the quantitative analysis.

History.Doc
March 15, 2013, 09:36 AM
http://www.justia.com/criminal/docs/calcrim/500/505.html
In California, there is a lot that hinges on what a reasonable person would do. If you have been drinking you are still held to that standard.

Frank Ettin
March 15, 2013, 11:42 AM
...Has there been an extensive study done on defensive shooting outcomes both in terms of the actual gun fight and the fallout? I've read a lot of qualitative and often anecdotal accounts of shootings and court battles but it would be interesting and very beneficial to see the quantitative analysis.There probably just isn't a big enough data base and the information is too diffuse and diverse. So what you can have are qualitative case studies.

There is this academic study (http://www.thejuryexpert.com/2009/09/will-it-hurt-me-in-court-weapons-issues-and-the-fears-of-the-legally-armed-citizen/) on the possible effects of the type of gun on juries.

breakingcontact
March 18, 2013, 06:40 PM
Thanks for the link. I am interested in reading more studies regarding the use of firearms in self defense and less internet lore that gets passed around and around.

Any definitive books, authors, articles?

JoePfeiffer
March 19, 2013, 02:28 AM
That's a really interesting article. Lots of work to be done...

beatledog7
March 19, 2013, 08:54 AM
Food for thought:

Using the concept of impaired judgement to help prosecute defensive shooters is another government methodology for disarming us.

If they can turn obvious "good shoots" into second degree murders, they think the rest of us will be so afraid of the consequences of a defensive shoot that we'll lay down our guns.

Frank Ettin
March 19, 2013, 11:28 AM
...Using the concept of impaired judgement to help prosecute defensive shooters is another government methodology for disarming us....No. Whenever, in connection with any sort of matter in litigation, perception or judgment is material, so is anything that might impair perception or judgment.

...If they can turn obvious "good shoots" into second degree murders,...If it's that obviously a "good shoot", a prosecutor won't be able to do that. But if you're so drunk that you mistake someone's completely and obviously innocent actions for a threat and shoot him, it's not a "good shoot."

beatledog7
March 19, 2013, 04:40 PM
It then comes down to how one defines and perceives "obvious," does it not.

Frank Ettin
March 19, 2013, 04:54 PM
It then comes down to how one defines and perceives "obvious," does it not.

Yes, and here's the key: if it was obvious, you wouldn't be on trial. If you're on trial it means that with everything considered your justification was sufficiently not obvious that the prosecutor concluded that he could convince a jury beyond a reasonable doubt that you're guilty.

breakingcontact
March 20, 2013, 07:32 PM
If the difference of a person being hammered out of their mind vs having a beer or two cannot be understood by the jury you're in deep trouble. Suppose if you're hauled in front of a jury at all you've got major issues.

smalls
March 21, 2013, 10:40 AM
Yesterday, 07:32 PM #68

If the difference of a person being hammered out of their mind vs having a beer or two cannot be understood by the jury you're in deep trouble. Suppose if you're hauled in front of a jury at all you've got major issues.

The problem is that alcohol affects different people differently. I know people that get wasted off a couple beers, and others that can down a whole bottle of Jack Daniels and not even look drunk.

Frank Ettin
March 21, 2013, 11:11 AM
...I know people that get wasted off a couple beers, and others that can down a whole bottle of Jack Daniels and not even look drunk.And the fact that one doesn't "look drunk" doesn't mean he's not impaired. And I'm sure that a prosecutor would have no trouble getting expert testimony to that effect.

SHR970
March 21, 2013, 06:00 PM
And the last two posts oversimplify that fact that without a breathalyzer reading, urinalysis, or blood test they won't know what your BAC is let alone any other mitigating pharmaceuticals or recreational drugs that are in your system. Simply saying the person smelled of alcohol and exhibited XYZ isn't enough. Diabetic Ketoacidosis has been mistaken for being drunk enough in the past that it is well documented.

The burden of proof will be on the prosecution to show that you were impaired enough for it to matter for the given circumstances to the point that you were criminally negligent.

chrisTx
March 21, 2013, 06:07 PM
Being the victim of a crime, or a potential crime doesn't usually warrant a blood alcohol test on the victim. As long as you are within the scope of the law, and a 'reasonable person' would have acted in the same or similar manner, then what's to be worried about?

breakingcontact
March 21, 2013, 06:29 PM
The burden of proof will be on the prosecution to show that you were impaired enough for it to matter for the given circumstances to the point that you were criminally negligent.

I don't want to give them any help though, either. Not condemning those of you who do drink.

I know there are other issues they could use against a person. They could attack the caliber used. The number of shots fired and on and on...

I respect we all have to make our own decisions. I am a fan of using what or about what police use in terms of pistols or shotgun ammo.

RetiredUSNChief
March 21, 2013, 06:49 PM
Anything can happen in a civil suit. Like OJ's first pass through the system, acquitted on two counts of murder. 3 years later lost the civil case because of a preponderance of evidence to hold him liable for damages, of the people he was acquitted of killing...

I agree with "Anything can happen in a civil suit".

OJ was aquitted in a CRIMINAL trial, where the standard is "beyond a reasonable doubt". A civil trial has a different standard: "preponderance of evidence".

In a criminal trial if you can introduce even one reasonable doubt, then you can be aquitted. In a civil trial, if 51% of the evidence is against you, you lose.


What would happen depends on the type of trial you are in, among other things.

2@low8
March 23, 2013, 04:08 AM
When I was a LEO working in the uniform division there were two things that alerted me that a person may be under the influence of alcohol:
1- Certain physical behaviors and 2- The odor of an alcoholic beverage.

So if you drink I recommend two things:
1- Donít drink to the extent that your physical behavior shows it and 2- keep something handy to mask your breath like the specific breath sprays that neutralize the odor or foods with strong masking odor.

I donít see that neutralizing or masking the odor as deceptive; itís just keeping from muddying the water. If you are not physically impaired, which is the essence of being under the influence, then why let the odor convict you? Do as youíre your conscience guides you. Since I NEVER consume more that 3 ounces of alcohol in less than a 2 hour period the above routine works for me. YMMV

thorazine
March 23, 2013, 04:44 AM
I was curious if the presence of alcohol in your system after a home defense situation had an adverse effect? My question involves two different scenarios:

1. My BAC is between .01 and the legal limit (.08 in most cases).
2. My BAC is over the legal limit (>.08 in most cases)

My vote is,

No and no.

Unless it was a bad shoot to begin with then I am sure that's more ammunition that will be used against you. =D

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