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Citizens Arrest and Deputizing

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  • #16
    Originally posted by onyx1976
    Just to back up everyone else, Wannabe, it's definitely a bad idea to take the law in your own hands even if you have witnessed the crime. However, the question goes to the police officers: What if you "the private citizen" and were trained in aprehention (loss prevention) or what have you, and you witnessed a man beating a woman or someone drunk out of their mind about to drive off?
    This is a very good reason for a private person not to make an arrest. A man beating a woman, unless there is some serious injury, in KY would probably be Assault 4th, a class A misdemeanor, and therefore not fall under the private persons arrest due to it not being a felony offense.
    "We cross our bridges when we come to them and burn them behind us, with nothing to show for our progress except a memory of the smell of smoke, and a presumption that once our eyes watered." - Rosencrantz & Guildenstern Are Dead

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    • #17
      Not quite that simple

      Originally posted by KY PO
      That is an interesting point. So, if a private person arrested someone for a felony offense, and the offender went to trial, was found not guilty because all they had was the private person as a witness.....then at that point, is the private person guilty of kidnapping?

      I suppose the fact that one is acquitted does not mean that one "in fact" didn't commit the crime, only that it wasn't proved. I taught at the academy, and used a different example. Say you get a call about a guy who is taking a ball bat to a car parked on the street. He's whaling the car as you show up. Curious, you ask what's up? He explains that it's his ex-wifes car, and he's ****ed cuz she just took him to the cleaners over child support.

      Since he's doing this in your presence, you arrest him (with or without a fight). Later you find out it's not his ex-wifes car, it's his own car. He can't be charged with damaging his own car. While the officer had reasonable cause (probably cause in most states) to believe an offense was being committed, and offense was not in fact committed. (Don't split hairs with me here over disorderly conduct or something, you get the idea). The police officer still made a legal arrest. He had PC.

      A private citizen who made such an arrest made an illegal one, and subjected himself to all kinds of legal ramifictaions, probably civil unless force was used and he caused an injury. Under those circumstances, maybe criminal charges would apply.
      You can now follow me on twitter.

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