Not Messing Around

0621091005, originally uploaded by Prince of Petworth.

Thanks to a reader for sending:

“In the alley behind 1500 block of Varnum Street NW.

Luckily, I had my big mean doggy with me.”

Incidentally, can’t you get arrested for shooting someone on your property unless your life is in danger?

11 Comment

  • I was on a bike ride in Mississippi this spring. Came accross a trailer home with a spray-painted message on the side, “NO TRESPASSING, MARSHALL LAW ENFORCED.” I kept going.

  • I don’t think DC has a self defense law. Before the Supremes overturned DC gun ban, you would at least have been charged with CPWL and possession of unregistered firearm and ammo.

    I know this guy that killed a man in G’town. Guy was beating him up pretty badly. The guy I know had a pocket knife and managed to poke the guy and (un)luckily hit a vital organ. The guy didn’t know he was even wounded and walked away. he died later. DC didn’t charge my friend with murder. They did charged him with carrying a dangerous weapon though.

  • It’s my vague recollection from law school that it is not OK to use deadly force to protect property, but is OK to protect yourself from serious bodily harm. So if this resident shot someone for simply tresspassing or even to prevent a theft, the resident would not have a valid defense.

  • Dead men don’t tell tales…

  • Yeah, but their families do file civil charges.

  • Every state is different, AJ. In Texas it’s legal to shoot someone in defense of property (even someone else’s), whereas here you have to call Phil Mendelson and try to work it out with the criminal, and discuss his feelings, before you can say a naughty word or dare ask the criminal to stop beating or shooting you.

  • Given how rusty that sign is, I’m guessing that sign went up long before the gun laws in the District were revised allowing the resident to own any gun, let alone shoot it, regardless of the reason. So I doubt the person who put it up cares whether or not it is legal to shoot someone trespassing.

    But there’s no law saying you can’t put up a sign that says whatever you want.

  • Actually, if you take the test to get a firearm license in the city, they go over when you can shoot someone. Sadly you can’t shoot them for messing with your car. (And they are wise to the ‘I was just cleaning it’ line.) You’ve got to get your victim to come into your house. At least that was on the test 9 years ago. Maybe the rules a looser on stabbing. Personally, I use the China Hut Carry Out to kill my victims. No fingerprints. You’ve got to get your victim good and drunk, as most sober people recognize the danger of China Hut.

  • I have a friend who was livid recently, before the new gun law there was an on-line news article actually quoting a DC official who said that DC wouldn’t press charges if you used an illegal firearm in self defense inside your home. Interestingly, that sentence was removed from the article without any official notice of the revision, hence his anger at his perception of the lack of journalistic integrity. Fortunately he captured a screenshot of it for what it’s worth.

  • your use of force has to be equal to the threat….no bodily harm unless you face the threat of bodily harm (so hurting your window/tv does not equal right to shoot) sorry folks

  • In DC, you can get away with shooting an intruder in your house or yard if you can show investigators there was a legitimate threat to your life.

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