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  1. KZ2 is offline

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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 1:47pm


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    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    Legal issues of knife use

    Okay, I was curious:

    In the U.S., under what circumstances of self defense (i.e., somebody is already in the process of physically attacking you or has shown imminent intent) are you "legally allowed" to use a knife to defend yourself?
  2. Mr. Mantis is offline
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 2:02pm

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Each State is going to have different standards to follow. It also depends on the circumstances (usually where you are at the time of attack, timing of occurances, etc).

    But remember this, defenses like "Self-defense" are just defenses, and have to be proven by the Defendant.

    A knife is a "weapon" A gun is also a weapon, but it will tend to have another classification as being a "firearm" which can carry more penalties than just using a "weapon."

    If you narrow down your question, maybe it can be answered.
    “We are surrounded by warships and don’t have time to talk. Please pray for us.” — One Somali Pirate.
  3. KZ2 is offline

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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 2:10pm


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    It was kind of a broad question by default... Yeah, if you go to court over using the knife then it's the defendant's burden to show he was "within the standards of self defense", but: what are those standards as apply to using a knife (weapon)?

    I hear you about it being different state-by-state. Which makes this an unreasonably "diverse" question to answer. :D

    But aren't there some general rules that all states subscribe to concerning self-defense with a weapon?

    For example: Someone walk up to me and strikes me with his fist unprovoked. Would it be wise for me to produce a knife and attempt to stab him?
  4. Plasma is online now
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 3:25pm

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by KZ2
    For example: Someone walk up to me and strikes me with his fist unprovoked. Would it be wise for me to produce a knife and attempt to stab him?
    NO! Rule of Thumb for any state. If they don't have a weapon, you shouldn't either.

    There are probably exception to rule, like he was choking you to death and you felt your life was in danger.

    But for your example NO.
  5. Mr. Mantis is offline
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 3:32pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by KZ2

    For example: Someone walk up to me and strikes me with his fist unprovoked. Would it be wise for me to produce a knife and attempt to stab him?
    No because, if we take the most conservative approach, you can not escalate the violence. Pulling a weapon on an unarmed person would be escalation. I have come across the scenario where 5 guys jumped one guy, and the one guy got a stick and whacked the **** out of one of the atackers, he required multiple sutures. The prosecutor decided not to charge the guy that got jumped. Where they had contemplated charging him with assault with a weapon.
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  6. KZ2 is offline

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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 3:55pm


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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr_Mantis
    No because, if we take the most conservative approach, you can not escalate the violence. Pulling a weapon on an unarmed person would be escalation. I have come across the scenario where 5 guys jumped one guy, and the one guy got a stick and whacked the **** out of one of the atackers, he required multiple sutures. The prosecutor decided not to charge the guy that got jumped. Where they had contemplated charging him with assault with a weapon.
    If this is true (and I don't doubt your honesty) then that's fucked up (the fact they contemplated charging him).

    I mean... whatever happened to the right to deter people from beating the **** out of you?
  7. Plasma is online now
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 3:56pm

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    laws > logic

    That why lawyers are 21st century ninjas
  8. KZ2 is offline

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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 4:07pm


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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Surely there's something in the law that says sheer number of attackers (in the 5-on-1 example) escalates the situation to the point where using a weapon is an appropriate response?
  9. Plasma is online now
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 4:12pm

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    None. You're really not that bright are you.
  10. Teh El Macho is offline
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    Posted On:
    6/22/2006 4:25pm

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    Quote Originally Posted by KZ2
    Surely there's something in the law that says sheer number of attackers (in the 5-on-1 example) escalates the situation to the point where using a weapon is an appropriate response?
    No. It's all discretionary to the prosecutors and the judge.

    I'm not sure Mantis, correct me if I'm wrong. But I have the suspicion the prosecutor wanted to prosecute the stick dude because one of the attackers required multiple sutures. That was escalation. If he had just wacked him and knock him out and make a run for it, the situation would have been different.

    For the attacker to require multiple sutures, stick dude must have wacked him several times, and I doubt the attacker at that point was still trying to charge him. Most people are not that bad asses.

    KZ2, I'm not saying it's logical. ****, anyone who jumps others in multitude deserves to be castrated with a hammer. But if the prosecutors decide to think "hey, stick dude at that point was no longer the victim of an attack defending himself, but had become an attacker... and with a weapon", there is nothing one can do to stop them from thinking like that. That's their job.
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