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Man "stands his ground" during burglary

One homeowner took matters into his own hands by firing shots at a burglary suspect last week in Marshall, Indiana.

Posted: Apr. 4, 2018 6:47 PM
Updated: Apr. 4, 2018 7:00 PM

MARSHALL, Ind. (WTHI) - A string of burglaries happened in Marshall, Indiana late last week.

One homeowner took matters into his own hands by firing shots at one of the suspects. Nobody was hurt during the incident.

The Stand Your Ground Law in Indiana 

 

IC 35-41-3-2Use of force to protect person or property

     Sec. 2. (a) In enacting this section, the general assembly finds and declares that it is the policy of this state to recognize the unique character of a citizen's home and to ensure that a citizen feels secure in his or her own home against unlawful intrusion by another individual or a public servant. By reaffirming the long standing right of a citizen to protect his or her home against unlawful intrusion, however, the general assembly does not intend to diminish in any way the other robust self defense rights that citizens of this state have always enjoyed. Accordingly, the general assembly also finds and declares that it is the policy of this state that people have a right to defend themselves and third parties from physical harm and crime. The purpose of this section is to provide the citizens of this state with a lawful means of carrying out this policy.

     (b) As used in this section, "public servant" means a person described in IC 35-31.5-2-129 or IC 35-31.5-2-185.

     (c) A person is justified in using reasonable force against any other person to protect the person or a third person from what the person reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force. However, a person:

(1) is justified in using deadly force; and

(2) does not have a duty to retreat;

if the person reasonably believes that that force is necessary to prevent serious bodily injury to the person or a third person or the commission of a forcible felony. No person in this state shall be placed in legal jeopardy of any kind whatsoever for protecting the person or a third person by reasonable means necessary.

     (d) A person:

(1) is justified in using reasonable force, including deadly force, against any other person; and

(2) does not have a duty to retreat;

if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent or terminate the other person's unlawful entry of or attack on the person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle.

     (e) With respect to property other than a dwelling, curtilage, or an occupied motor vehicle, a person is justified in using reasonable force against any other person if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to immediately prevent or terminate the other person's trespass on or criminal interference with property lawfully in the person's possession, lawfully in possession of a member of the person's immediate family, or belonging to a person whose property the person has authority to protect. However, a person:

(1) is justified in using deadly force; and

(2) does not have a duty to retreat;

only if that force is justified under subsection (c).

     (f) A person is justified in using reasonable force, including deadly force, against any other person and does not have a duty to retreat if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent or stop the other person from hijacking, attempting to hijack, or otherwise seizing or attempting to seize unlawful control of an aircraft in flight. For purposes of this subsection, an aircraft is considered to be in flight while the aircraft is:

(1) on the ground in Indiana:

(A) after the doors of the aircraft are closed for takeoff; and

(B) until the aircraft takes off;

(2) in the airspace above Indiana; or

(3) on the ground in Indiana:

(A) after the aircraft lands; and

(B) before the doors of the aircraft are opened after landing.

     (g) Notwithstanding subsections (c) through (e), a person is not justified in using force if:

(1) the person is committing or is escaping after the commission of a crime;

(2) the person provokes unlawful action by another person with intent to cause bodily injury to the other person; or

(3) the person has entered into combat with another person or is the initial aggressor unless the person withdraws from the encounter and communicates to the other person the intent to do so and the other person nevertheless continues or threatens to continue unlawful action.

     (h) Notwithstanding subsection (f), a person is not justified in using force if the person:

(1) is committing, or is escaping after the commission of, a crime;

(2) provokes unlawful action by another person, with intent to cause bodily injury to the other person; or

(3) continues to combat another person after the other person withdraws from the encounter and communicates the other person's intent to stop hijacking, attempting to hijack, or otherwise seizing or attempting to seize unlawful control of an aircraft in flight.

     (i) A person is justified in using reasonable force against a public servant if the person reasonably believes the force is necessary to:

(1) protect the person or a third person from what the person reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force;

(2) prevent or terminate the public servant's unlawful entry of or attack on the person's dwelling, curtilage, or occupied motor vehicle; or

(3) prevent or terminate the public servant's unlawful trespass on or criminal interference with property lawfully in the person's possession, lawfully in possession of a member of the person's immediate family, or belonging to a person whose property the person has authority to protect.

     (j) Notwithstanding subsection (i), a person is not justified in using force against a public servant if:

(1) the person is committing or is escaping after the commission of a crime;

(2) the person provokes action by the public servant with intent to cause bodily injury to the public servant;

(3) the person has entered into combat with the public servant or is the initial aggressor, unless the person withdraws from the encounter and communicates to the public servant the intent to do so and the public servant nevertheless continues or threatens to continue unlawful action; or

(4) the person reasonably believes the public servant is:

(A) acting lawfully; or

(B) engaged in the lawful execution of the public servant's official duties.

     (k) A person is not justified in using deadly force against a public servant whom the person knows or reasonably should know is a public servant unless:

(1) the person reasonably believes that the public servant is:

(A) acting unlawfully; or

(B) not engaged in the execution of the public servant's official duties; and

(2) the force is reasonably necessary to prevent serious bodily injury to the person or a third person.

As added by Acts 1976, P.L.148, SEC.1. Amended by Acts 1977, P.L.340, SEC.8; Acts 1979, P.L.297, SEC.1; P.L.59-2002, SEC.1; P.L.189-2006, SEC.1; P.L.161-2012, SEC.1; P.L.13-2013, SEC.139.

 

Source

 

 

However, it prompted the Parke County Sheriff's Office to make a Facebook Post concerning the "Stand Your Ground" law.


Wednesday, News 10 spoke to Carl Huxford, who has lived in Marshall, Indiana for 14 years. He and his other neighbors were victims of the recent burglary. Huxford says his vehicle and his son’s vehicle were burglarized.

Huxford shares, “My other neighbor said that he looked out, he saw the boy crouched underneath his car with a gun in his hand. And he said, ‘I didn't want to shoot the boy over what was going on.’"

However, Huxford did have another neighbor that when he realized what was happening, took matters into his own hands by firing off shots.

Huxford says, "He was defending his space. I think he did the right thing."

So that brings up the question, ‘What rights do homeowners have to protect their property?’

Parke County Sheriff Justin Cole says, "If it’s an open field, that’s not included, if it’s a barn that sits way back of your property, then that’s not included. If it’s your vehicle that unoccupied then you’re not covered under that self-defense right either. It's got to be within your curtilage, it's got to be nearby buildings or your home. Sometimes if you have a fence, it's within your fence. So, there are grey areas."

As a homeowner, hearing there are "grey areas" can sound scary. But, Cole says it just means each situation is different.

Sheriff Cole says, "Every case of self-defense is fact sensitive, so it can be open for legal debate. So if somebody does choose to take that step, then they should also be prepared, they may have to defend their actions of what they did, and there could be consequences if they weren't within the law."

Knowing that the “Stand Your Ground” law is in place, Huxford says if he was in his neighbor's shoes, he probably would've done the same thing.

Huxford says, "We've got a right to our space and to our defense and if someone invades our privacy we've got a right to defend ourselves."

Despite this incident, Huxford says he still feels safe living in the small community.

Huxford shares, "I always feel safe. My door's unlocked, my car was unlocked, it still is. It's a safe community, it was just an isolated incident. "

We want to hear from you, how familiar are you with the “Stand Your Ground” law?

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