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mscar111

Question about castle doctrine

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I'm wanting to buy a pistol to keep in my house and in my truck. I read that I'm allowed to do this because of the castle doctrine.

 

My question is: if someone approaches my vehicle and starts to punch my glass to try and break it and get access into my vehicle, am I allowed to shoot them or do I have to wait until they break the glass?

 

Also what if the person is approaching my car with a bat, crowbar, or some kind of weapon and I'm assuming they are going to use it to break my glass and attack me, do I have to wait until they break the glass, or am I able to draw my gun and tell them to back off or shoot them?

 

I'm mostly concerned about road rage, or someone trying to rob me.

 

My plan is if someone has something in their hands like a bat or pipe, and is acting in an angry and aggressive manner, and starts walking toward my vehicle, I'll draw my pistol and tell them to back away and then I'll leave, and then if they decide to take a swing at my window and gain entrance to my vehicle, then I'll shoot, I'm just not sure if that's the right way to do it.

 

Also I'm wondering if I'm outside my vehicle, and someone is threatening to kill me or gives me a reason to think my life is in danger, am I allowed to run to my car and grab my gun and defend myself near my vehicle, or do I have to be inside the vehicle when I use my gun? How far am I able to be away from my vehicle with my gun and use it?

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You brought up some interesting questions. As far as a crazy coming at you with a bat, crowbar, pipe, or something else to break glass and attack you. To be on the safe side I would wait till he swung the weapon first, after yelling for him to stop. The question of running to your car to get a gun, I have heard if you don't have a carrying permit you can't use it outside your car. There's other guys on here very knowledgeable. Some will post the right answers. And welcome!

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Castle Doctrine is a set of principles not a law. Tennessee doesn’t have a duty to retreat and hasn’t in the 20+ years I have been here. Castle doctrine does not require proving intent in a intruder’s mind. It is assumed you were in danger. However… if the DA can provide evidence to over come the assumption you were in danger; you have a problem.

 You can have a gun in your car because Tennessee law allows it. If you are found to be justified in the use of deadly force in this state; weapons charges do not apply. So, it really doesn’t matter where the gun was if you need it. However, Castle Doctrine principles apply to you vehicle. If someone attacks you for no reason in a road rage incident (unlikely) you can protect yourself if they attempt to enter your vehicle. However…if you are a willing participant in a road rage incident; you could have problems. I would never use deadly force on someone outside my vehicle unless they were threatening me with a gun. I would wait until they forced entry. And If my loudmouth or temper got me in that situation; I’d take an azz whipping before I’d pull a gun.

The bottom line is; there are no free fire zones. Stick with the following and you should be okay for most any state. You can use deadly force if a reasonable person (that means a Judge or jury) believes you are in immediate danger of death or great bodily harm.

Edited by DaveTN

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Welcome.  For a 1st post/question, yours is a doozy.  Lots of variables and situations which brings up a lot of 'depends'.  As you pointed out, your best option in most all situations is to leave the area.  Once you sense something is going wrong, it is always best to leave before things go bad. As far as your car is concerned with regard to the castle doctrine, basically your passenger compartment has to be violated as far as impact weapons, kicking windows out, or opening your door.  Simply beating on your car is not enough to warrant deadly force on your part.  Circumstances can vary this response.  Being outside your vehicle, returning to retrieve a firearm always will raise some questions and may weaken a SD argument.  One of the reasons it is best to obtain a carry permit, have the gun on you in case you need it for an imminent threat.

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If some jerk is beating on your window with a crowbar, then waiting for it to come through the glass before you take action does not seem like an optimal strategy for self defense.

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The best way to win a fight is to not take part in it. The question should never be “am I allowed to use deadly force in _____ situation.” Thats the wrong way to approach the mental work involved in defensive force, though it is quite common amongst folks when they first start carrying. I myself asked the same questions until others here helped me see that my thinking was misaligned. 

The question should always be “did I do my best to avoid any situation where I may be compelled by lack of reasonable options to use deadly force?”

If the answer is yes and you unfortunately found yourself having to use deadly force, at that point your fate is no longer in your own hands. It’s in the hands of police, a prosecutor and possibly a judge and jury. That reality, ugly as it may be doesn’t stop me from being as prepared as I can be to engage in the necessary (key word) amounts of violence to protect myself or my loved ones because the other options aren’t acceptable.

Reading through most of your proposed scenarios, my view is informed by being a truck driver who has dealt with more than one road rager in my career. The main pieces of advice I would give is 1) don’t ever get out of your vehicle and engage with the rager in the first place. 2) if you are in a stationary vehicle with someone approaching you, don’t remain stationary! Leave!

 

Edited by Chucktshoes
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11 hours ago, Chucktshoes said:

The main pieces of advice I would give is 1) don’t ever get out of your vehicle and engage with the rager in the first place. 2) if you are in a stationary vehicle with someone approaching you, don’t remain stationary! Leave!

 

Awareness, Avoidance. Deterrence, and Deescalation are always excellent advice.

A fight you didn't have to fight is the only one you'll win when all is said and done.

We carry a higher obligation when we choose to live an armed lifestyle. At any altercation we know there is at least one deadly force tool available.

Please seek professional training @mscar111, it's invaluable imho. And thank you for asking the questions. I hope you'll heed the advice.

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On 9/21/2019 at 7:35 PM, mscar111 said:

My plan is if someone has something in their hands like a bat or pipe, and is acting in an angry and aggressive manner, and starts walking toward my vehicle, I'll draw my pistol and tell them to back away and then I'll leave, and then if they decide to take a swing at my window and gain entrance to my vehicle, then I'll shoot, I'm just not sure if that's the right way to do it.

That's a good plan, IMO but you left out the critical final step: Call 911 as soon as possible, even if that's after you leave the situation. You want to be the first person reporting the incident and you do NOT want the other person filing a report that you brandished a firearm at them and then drove off.

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1 hour ago, monkeylizard said:

That's a good plan, IMO but you left out the critical final step: Call 911 as soon as possible, even if that's after you leave the situation. You want to be the first person reporting the incident and you do NOT want the other person filing a report that you brandished a firearm at them and then drove off.

Very important point... the one who calls it in first is always assumed to be the victim. 

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16 minutes ago, peejman said:

Very important point... the one who calls it in first is always assumed to be the victim. 

Yep, and it’s not unusual for the Officer knocking on your door, or showing up at your job to arrest you for felony assault; to not be the Officers that took the initial report.

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As Chuck said, your vehicle can move, move. They way I look at is if I can get the hell out of dodge I am. My office in town if off what I call Hobo Highway. We have a couple places that take care of the homeless by us so they all travel up and down church street. I was coming back to the office last winter, it was dark and raining. There was a homeless crazy dude standing in the middle of the road swinging a pipe at cars. He had incoming traffic stopped and was trying to hit a car in front of me. That car eventually got out of his way so he decided to set his sites on my truck. I rolled down the window and yelled at him to move, he decided to swing as I was backing up. When he stumbled out of the way I gassed it and swerved around him. My HK was sitting in the cup holder but I had no intention of pulling it. If I can get out of the situation I will. I called the city as I got around him but someone else beat me to it because the city was already in route. Point of the story I guess is I could have let him bash my truck and windows and shot him I guess.... but there was no need for that. It may sound bad but my first thought was get out of his way because if I shoot him I'm a white guy in a company truck and I just shot a crazy black dude in the road, not going to look good.

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