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Old 05-04-2007, 12:24 PM   #59
LateNight
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Castle Doctrine

HB 1097 is the companion bill to HB 89 (also by Representative LaFleur), the NRA-supported “Castle Doctrine” bill which created presumptions in law for the use of force against intruders in your home, car or place of business and explicitly states in law that you have no “duty to retreat” from criminal attack if you are in a place where you have a legal right to be.


Castle Doctrine refers to a legal concept derived from English Common Law as it is presently applied in sections of the United States of America. It designates one's home (or any place legally occupied, such as one's car or place of work) as a place in which one enjoys protections from both prying and violent attack. In the United States, laws informally referred to as 'castle laws' can sometimes impose an obligation to retreat before using force to defend oneself. The Castle Doctrine provides for an exception to this duty. Provided one is attacked in their own home, vehicle, or place of business, in jurisdictions where 'castle laws' are in force, one may stand their ground against an assailant without fear of prosecution.


The opposite of a "castle" principle is the "Duty to Retreat", which is the case in most U.S. Northeastern states, such as Connecticut, New York, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts[1] (where Castle Doctrine takes effect only within the confines of the 'dwelling'). Castle Doctrine laws in the U.S. are sometimes referred to as the "use of deadly force" [2] or "no retreat" laws, and originate in the home, but are sometimes (depending on the state) extended to the automobile or the business or any place where one has a legal right to be (a campground or park, for example).
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