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  • #16
    Originally posted by ateamer View Post
    You use deadly force against a deadly threat. I don't think that any state requires that someone use pain compliance to counter deadly force.


    • #17
      I have my gun, my knife and a cell phone on me. The knife isn't even there as a weapon so much as it is a tool. Takes pretty much a life and death situation for me to get involved off duty. I call on duty officers otherwise. If I have to kill someone I have no doubt the family will be on the news within the hour telling everyone how he/she was a good boy/girl and how I was not justified. I doubt the presence of OC in my back pocket will change much.
      "Somewhere a True Believer is training to kill you. He is training with minimum food or water, in austere conditions, day and night. The only thing clean on him is his weapon. He doesn't worry about what workout to do---his rucksack weighs what it weighs, and he runs until the enemy stops chasing him. The True Believer doesn't care 'how hard it is'; he knows he either wins or he dies. He doesn't go home at 1700; he is home. He knows only the 'Cause.' Now, who wants to quit?"


      • #18
        Currently in our state, a citizen has a duty to retreat if they can; officers have no such obligation. A citizen carrying both OC and a firearm would merely have to articulate that they were threatened with deadly force or serious bodily injury - or a third person near them was so threatened - and that they had no reasonable means of avoiding the threat, so they responded with deadly force. The only permissible use of deadly force to prevent a property crime is to prevent imminent acts of arson.

        Other than that, the force continuum does indeed legally apply to citizens as well as officer, yet only officers are required to be trained in the use & application of the force continuum.

        BTW, the force continuum we learn & teach is not linear - it is circular. There is no "top" or "bottom", just lesser or greater levels of force, which do not need to be applied in a linear fashion. You start your use of force with whatever is most approrpiate for the circumstances.

        Sources: NH RSA's 627:4, 627:5, and 627:7; US Supreme Court Tennessee v. Garner & Graham v. Connnor.

        In this NH legislative session several bills have passed our state house chambers - now being considered by our state senate - to seriously revise and/or revoke many of the citizen requirements. Two most prominent here are to make the state a 'constitutional carry' state (we currently allow 'open carry') and to allow 'castle doctrine' as with the 'retreat' requirement in 627:4 (which applies even in your own home) we are not a 'castle doctrine' state.
        The opinions expressed here are from the individual only and do not represent the view of any agency that the poster may be affiliated with


        • #19
          Originally posted by Lawdawg45
          These two sentences contradict one another in most scenarios. The Force Continuum has no provision for retreat (at least ours anyway), hence the different levels of graduated force. If the civilian has a duty to retreat, then retreat or deadly force are the two options. I'm not aware of any court case suggesting civilians carry non lethal items and a graduated use of those items. What I am familiar with are several cases here locally where Tasers or pepper spray were used inappropriately and the users were charged with Battery.

          If the appropriate option in response to a threat of force is to use deadly force, then for the civilian they must attempt to retreat first.

          All other provisions remain the same - use of force by anyone must be contingent upon the threat; i.e., it would be inappropriate for a citizen to OC someone who is complying with verbal commands, just as it would be inaapropriate for me to OC someone who is being fully compliant with officer pressence/verbal commands. "Well, I'm sorry your honor, but even though he was fully compliant I just felt like spraying him anyway." That won't sell, regardless if you are an officer or not.

          The issue is that citizens are still held to a standard of practicability related to the concept of a force continuum. I know that in some states persons are rquired to attend some sort of firearms class in order to get a permit to carry; that is not the case in our state, so unlike an officer who must be educated in & recertified annually in knowledge of the force continuum, there is no such requirement for citizens here. And, no, there is no requirement for a citizen to carry various intermediate weapons, either. However, if they do carry a stun gun, baton, or taser - all legal here (and I know not so in all places) - if they use such things they will indeed be judged on whether or not the use of such a tool was appropriate given the level of threat they were facing. The most publicized example of what was then charged as inappropriate use of force was in the past year when a citizen named Ward Bird brandished a firearm in response to a non-deadly threat...and his incarceration & eventual governor's pardon resulted in a legal change to our RSA 627:4 this year. Here, anyway, the civilian use of force - deadly or otherwise - is not only currently well publicized but discussed quite a lot among LE firearms instructors. And exactly as you not4ed in your state, if a citizen inappropriately uses a defense tool of any kind, they will most certainly face the criminal & civil consequences. In Ward Bird's case, he went to prison, was pardoned, and got the law changed after the fact.

          So, no, I do not think those two sentences contradict each other when the only 'retreat' provision for the non-LE use of force relates to use of deadly force, not all other uses of force.
          The opinions expressed here are from the individual only and do not represent the view of any agency that the poster may be affiliated with


          • #20
            You are absolutely correct in that since (here) there is no requirement that a citizen be trained prior to obtaining a colcealed carry permit - and needs no permit at all to open carry or own a firearm or any other weapon - there is no standard fixed in law or rule to apply such as there is for law enforcement, which is required to be trained & re-certified annually in the concept & application of the force continuum.

            That's where I think my explanation might be confusing, and now I see your point. I was referring to the fact that the non-LE use of force is most definitely held to a standard of appropriate use for the threat, even though it would be far less specific than it would be for the use of force in law enforcement. No, there is no (here, again) way to say that the citizen should have used soft hand versus hard, or OC versus baton. However, if the citizen uses any level of force not exempted by the law, they will indeed be judged as to whether or not that force was appropriate for the circumstances. The citizen may not have ever heard of a force continuum as we know it, but they will be held to a similar standard as far as the concept of varying levels of appropriate force are concerned. If deadly force is not authorized and they use it, they will not be told that they should have used OC (or whatever lesser level of force) but they will be told that they shouldn't have used deadly force.

            The law here for citizens: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/.../627/627-4.htm

            The law here for LE: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/.../627/627-5.htm

            For defense of property, use of force is in a different law: http://www.gencourt.state.nh.us/rsa/.../627/627-7.htm (not being a 'castle doctrine' state, the only permissible use of deadly force in defense of property is against the imminent threat of arson)

            Both 'use of force' statutes here are very similar, and certainly far simpler than I've seen in other states. The retreat requirement for non-LE only applies to deadly force, not any other level of force. The 'Effective Jan 1' of this year change to 627:4 is due to the incarceration & subsequent pardon of Mr. Ward Bird that I had alluded to earlier. At the time, merely displaying a firearm (which he did) in a non-deadly -force situation was considered a threat of deadly force and completely inappropriate for the circumstances with which he was faced. The 'victim' in the original situation had some issues come to light about her side of the story after he was imprisoned, there was a subsequent governor & council pardon for Mr. Bird, and our currently quite libertarian legislature changed 627:4 as it now reads. The point being: a citizen is most definitely going to be judged on how much force they can use; however, it will not be in the very detailed way that an officer is judged. But, they most certainly will be judged if & when they use force, deadly or otherwise, as to whether or not the level of force they used was appropriate compared to the perceived threat. LE or citizen, here, the permissible use of force can only be appropriate according to the specific threat.

            In the OP, here, regardless of if the citizen had OC, taser, baton, or whatever other level of less-lethal force, they should not have used the deadly force unless the threat was appropriate for a deadly force response. If they are only carrying a firearm, then they can only respond to a lethal-force threat (excepting the new changes to our law). If they are carrying OC and use deadly force when they shouldn't have, by all means they will be in big trouble and deep, but not because they didn't use the OC - rather, because they used lethal force when they were not justified in doing so.

            I didn't take offense at your questions or comments at all. If I'm still confusing and we need to keep at this some more, I'm fine trying to help others understand the laws here in the Granite State.
            Last edited by Nessmuk; 05-26-2011, 09:19 PM. Reason: gnilleps
            The opinions expressed here are from the individual only and do not represent the view of any agency that the poster may be affiliated with


            • #21
              Been there, done that. Wasn't even an issue. Bad guy had a weapon.


              • #22
                Originally posted by Lawdawg45
                I'm not sure where your coming from, since your bio is intentionally vague on your career, training and certification, but you seem to be confusing LE and civilians.
                The laws of physics apply to everyone. The appropriateness of application of force is a recursive function of balancing the interests of the individual against those of everyone. The goals of LE persons may differ from those of non-LE persons in that apprehension, as distinguished from immediate defense, may be more of a priority for the former than for the latter.

                Are you suggesting that civilians carry other non lethal options such as Tasers and ASP batons?
                I'm not against that.

                How many LEO's carry these items off duty?
                I don't know how many but I know some do. I like to keep a collapsible steel baton in my waistband. I've never used an electronic incapaciation device.

                As to your comment on the Pepper spray and the beer bottle, did you have a duty to intervene in the situation?

                Legally, just a right, not a duty.
                Last edited by Monty Ealerman; 06-09-2011, 10:05 AM.


                • #23
                  I feel a rash of resurrected threads coming on; and a headache.



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