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What Is Considered Self-Defense in Texas?

 Posted on June 30, 2020 in Criminal Defense

Fairview criminal defense attorney gun charges

There has always been a social battle about the safety of guns — do you feel safer with a gun in your hands or without one? The state of Texas allows gun ownership with the proper training and permits. Most people who own weapons use them for hunting or protection purposes. In fact, many who face gun charges use self-defense as their legal defense tactic. Since it is common for this tactic to be used, Texas law illustrates what is considered self-defense to protect those who were defending themselves while also obtaining justice for gun violence victims when the situation warrants.

Actions of Self-Defense

Known as “protection of persons” in Texas legislature, anyone who reasonably believes that immediate force is necessary to protect themselves is warranted to use this force against their attacker. The following three elements must be present in order for the situation to be considered a valid concern of threatened danger, thus warranting self-defense:

  1. The person who the force was used against unlawfully and forcefully entered the owner’s home, vehicle, workplace, or property.

  2. The person who the force was used against unlawfully and forcefully removed, or attempted to remove, the individual from his or her own home, vehicle, workplace, or property.

  3. The individual did not provoke the person with whom he or she used force against.

  4. The individual using force was not otherwise engaged in criminal activity.

In order to avoid other forms of conflict being misconstrued as momentous enough to warrant self-defense, this same law lists situations that do not justify the use of force for self-defense purposes:

  1. As a response to verbal provocation or insults.

  2. To resist a search or arrest by a law enforcement officer, even if the arrest or inspection is unlawful.

  3. If the individual consented to the force being used by the other person.

  4. If the individual provoked the other person to use the unlawful force.

What About Protecting Someone Else?

In the heat of the moment, you may find yourself shooting another person to protect a third party. Maybe your friend appears to be in imminent danger or you see a stranger trapped in a violent encounter. You may want to help but are also worried that you may not be protected by law. Luckily, Texas law outlines this for those who find themselves acting as a good samaritan protecting someone else from danger. Similar to the situation outlined above, if a person reasonably believes that a third party is in imminent danger from the unlawful force, and he or she believes immediate intervention is necessary for the third party’s protection, he or she is warranted to use force or deadly force against the threatening party. This may be easier to prove since it is not just one person’s word against another. The third party can act as a witness to be used in the individual’s defense.

Contact a Collin County Criminal Defense Lawyer

Anyone who is found to have used force, with a gun or weapon, against another person is bound to face questions and/or charges. Although the law states that you are innocent until proven guilty, cases in which one party has been severely or fatally injured can easily have the jury swayed one way, even without ample evidence. At Biederman & Burleson, P.L.L.C., we understand how difficult cases involving gun violence can be to defend. However, our experienced criminal defense team is well-equipped to assist with your defense strategy. With over 450 not guilty verdicts under our belt, our lawyers have had their fair share of experience defending those facing firearm violation charges in Texas. For help with your legal defense, contact our Plano gun charges defense attorneys at 469-333-3333 to schedule your free consultation.

Source:  https://statutes.capitol.texas.gov/Docs/PE/htm/PE.9.htm#C 

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