Apr 27, 2012

Thought Exercise

Found this one courtesy Bob over at The Drawn Cutlass.

Short form:
You're at a bar (assume bar carry is legal and you are, for the purposes of this exercise) with a friend, having a nice night out. There's a couple pool tables and people are making bets on a game. One guy gets the bartender to cover his bet, and loses... then walks off without making arrangements.
The bartender and bouncers lock the door and announce no one is leaving until the debt is settled.
No one coughs up, so a bouncer breaks a pool cue and picks someone nearby to make an example of. The bouncer swings for the fences and hits the guy hard enough to knock him out.

What do you do? (Aside from pick a better bar to hang out in. Yeesh.)

Comment here or comment there, or don't comment, but it's an interesting thought exercise.
Do you know the justifications for deadly force in your state?

Key thoughts to consider:
- is this kidnapping?
- assault with deadly force?
- robbery?
- are you willing to use deadly force to protect someone else in what is, at the core of it, a bar fight?

My answer to Bob's post is over there, and I've duplicated it in comments here. Discuss!


ZerCool said...

Here in NY, Article 35 covers use of force, including deadly force.

Use of deadly force is allowed when "the actor reasonably believes that such other person is using or about to use deadly physical force", "necessary to defend himself, herself or a third person", "He or she reasonably believes that such other person is committing or attempting to commit a kidnapping, forcible rape, forcible criminal sexual act or robbery".

I think you'd have a hard time making an argument for kidnapping, since (A) you're in a fixed location, and (B) you are able to communicate freely with the outside world. False imprisonment is a much better choice, but not justification for lethal force.

*However*, the bouncer hitting someone with a broken cue hard enough to cause unconsciousness IS pretty clearly "using or about to use deadly physical force", and deadly force to defend an non-aggressor third party IS justified. Would I use it? Tough call. I know what I think my answer is, but it's going to be heavily situation-dependent.

Bob said...

Thanks for the link. I didn't answer over at my place, but I will here: I'd back into a corner so so one could come at me from behind and satisfy the duty to retreat (just to be on the safe side from unscrupulous prosecutors), draw my handgun with one hand and my cell phone with the other, using the phone to call 911. I'd keep the 911 operator on the line until police arrived so that everything that took place would be recorded. Anyone with a weapon getting within 10 feet of me would be shot.

Bubblehead Les. said...

I see where you're going, you sneaky devil! This is simple. Change the scene from a bar to a house, have the Bar Owner and the Bouncer become a Drug Dealer and his Goon, and have the Debt Holder become your Roomie.

In Ohio, we have "Castle Doctrine" and "Stand Your Ground." So those rules would apply as soon as the Bouncer used the Pool Cue. It's called "Disparity of Force." Tactically, though, I'd Draw my Weapon, yell "Freeze! Drop the Cue!", and if he'd move towards me, it's a Double Tap. Then I'd get out the phone.

Why Phone Second? I only have 2 hands. And my testimony in Court would reflect that due to limited space and the Time Frame, BEING IN FEAR OF MY LIFE, I could not take the Time to call 911.

But keep in mind, I HAVE shot a Goblin in the Civilian World, and I HAVE stood in front of the Judge to explain myself.

And I HAVE been Totally Cleared because of the Shooting. But I followed what Mas Ayoob wrote in the past about what is Legal and what is Not Legal to do in a Shooting.

And THAT saved my ass.

DaddyBear said...

Here in Kentucky, Castle Doctrine applies wherever you have a legal right to be, and includes using force to protect others. Whether I'd intervene to protect the others in the bar is a toss-up, to be honest. I want to help my fellow man, but I also want to go home at the end of the night.

My response would be to draw both my gun and my cell phone. Call 911, explain the situation, and keep the bouncer out of arms reach until the police show up.

Old NFO said...

+1 on DB, but if the bouncer came after me or mine, all bets are off! And yeah, this is Castle Doctrine; you have NO means to retreat, and are being confronted by potentially deadly force.

agirlandhergun said...

Interesting discussion...

Lokidude said...

It's covered under Utah's kidnapping statute, as well as commission of a forcible felony when that bouncer got a weapon. I'm justified to skin the smokewagon, and most likely would, but I'm relatively certain that it's gonna be a no-win no matter what I do. I'm in their house, and as far as I know, seriously outnumbered, so while I'm going to fight back, I'm also making peace with my dear and fluffy lord.