United States: What Are The Safest States?

Tgace

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I could be wrong but I heard in NYS if somebody attacks you, if you fight back and they end up being hurt worse than you, you will get in trouble even if they took the first punch or attacked you first.

You are falling into the all too common trap of trying to take a complex situation and then boil it down to a legal IF-THEN. Real life situations are typically more complicated than good guy-bad guy scenarios.

Like Elder said upthread, SD law is really about "reasonableness". If some drunk takes a swing at you cause you looked at his girlfriend and you curb stomp him into a coma..yeah..you are gonna be in trouble. This would be the case in ANY state.

If you simply respond with a counterpunch and he falls down and strikes his head and goes into a coma that's an entirely different situation. You MAY wind up in court, but you would likely not be found CRIMINALLY liable (civil suits are different matters). Again, this would be likely in almost all States.
 
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PhotonGuy

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You are falling into the all too common trap of trying to take a complex situation and then boil it down to a legal IF-THEN. Real life situations are typically more complicated than good guy-bad guy scenarios.

Like Elder said upthread, SD law is really about "reasonableness". If some drunk takes a swing at you cause you looked at his girlfriend and you curb stomp him into a coma..yeah..you are gonna be in trouble. This would be the case in ANY state.

If you simply respond with a counterpunch and he falls down and strikes his head and goes into a coma that's an entirely different situation. You MAY wind up in court, but you would likely not be found CRIMINALLY liable (civil suits are different matters). Again, this would be likely in almost all States.
Well if you just throw one counterpunch and it puts him out of commission than that is clearly self defense. If you continue to beat on him after he's down and curb stop him into a coma as you put it, that is not self defense because he is no longer a threat after you landed the first punch. But if you just punch him once and it ends the fight but the result is that he's hurt worse than you, even though you shouldn't get in trouble for that, I heard in New York State you can get in trouble and I would like to be wrong about this as that would not be right to get in trouble for using self defense.
 

Tgace

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If during the course of a "bar fight"...while everyone is on the pavement and still swinging.. you decide to stand up and stomp on the guys head to win the fight. That's going to probably land you in trouble....

If it's deemed reasonable to punch you in a given situation, the damage resulting from that (single) punch isn't really the legal issue in terms of Article 35 in NY.

There is nothing in NY law that supports what you "heard". You would have to show me the incident/case being referred to to get a better answer.
 

Steve

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If during the course of a "bar fight"...while everyone is on the pavement and still swinging.. you decide to stand up and stomp on the guys head to win the fight. That's going to probably land you in trouble....

If it's deemed reasonable to punch you in a given situation, the damage resulting from that (single) punch isn't really the legal issue in terms of Article 35 in NY.

There is nothing in NY law that supports what you "heard". You would have to show me the incident/case being referred to to get a better answer.
This sounds very reasonable and about as clear can be. Can anyone help me understand how the strategy described by Kman below fits in with the reality of self defense above? The strategy below seems to hinge on complete incapacitation, which doesn't seem likely to appear reasonable. Doesn't really make sense to me. Game over doesn't strike me as being reasonable.

Can I just clarify. Many of the styles teach a sequence of moves that you might perform in a particular scenario. The simplest of these might be 360 defence of Krav and the other end, the bunkai of a kata like Suparenpei.

So, the first move in Krav to defend against a downward slash with a weapon is 'bursting' or a simultaneous strike to the wrist and neck. If you connect it's game over. If it fails, you overhook the arm and drive the knee repeatedly into the lower abdomen. If that connects it's likely game over but if it fails and we need more we start hitting the back of the neck, assuming he has bent over from the knees. Strikes to the back of the neck or skull with the forearm are likely to knock him down but if they haven't I'll give him a knee in the face. He is a real tough sucker if he hasn't gone down by now but I'm up to the arm lock and disarm at this point. If that fails I'll take him to the ground and kick to the back of the neck.

Against an untrained attacker just how long will he remain a threat? The chances of getting all the way through to the stomp are practically zero.

Similar with karate bunkai. You do the first technique and hopefully it is game over. If not you go to the second and so forth. It is only after a failed technique that you proceed.

Aikido is the same. Something as simple as kote gaeshi is only performed in theory if the punch to the head, inherent in the technique has failed.

What I am saying, in a very roundabout way, is that the 'finishing' technique of a stomp is the last technique in a a sequence of techniques. Hopefully the conflict has resolved well before that, even though the sequence is practised to its conclusion.
 

Tgace

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An attack with a weapon is a deadly-force situation. What you can reasonably do there is going to be different from what you could do otherwise.

Could you clarify the question a bit Steve?
 

Steve

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Sure. I'm not sure I can, but I'll try. If you have a defense strategy that is based upon the complete elimination of the threat, it seems out of sync with the legality of self defense hinging upon reasonably defending oneself from harm.

I guess I just don't know that I understand what "game over" means in the progression that K-man describes. What is "game over?" Or, asked another way, if the chain of techniques ends with curb stomping a guy into unconsciousness, and each step along the way is measured against the bad guy's ability to do some harm (do anything at all?), is anything along the way reasonable?

Can you guys with more experience with the legal system share how this works out? Let's say I start by exploding on the guy with simultaneous strikes to his wrsit and his throat. What would "game over" look like with this technique? Would "game over" be reasonable self defense? What about the multiple knees to the abdomen, followed by repeated strikes to the back of the neck and head? Game over looks like what? Is that likely to be viewed as "reasonable?"
 

Tgace

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Well..I would hesitate to believe or state that a martial arts response to an attack is so formulaic that you HAVE to carry through with a technique even if it becomes obvious that the opponent is incapacitated or that you can depart the scene in safety. If it's not obvious that the opponent is no longer a deadly threat to you than you continue until the opponent IS no longer a threat, or you believe you can depart in COMPLETE safety.

You shouldn't believe that you "have to complete your technique with a head stomp" because...well...that's the technique.

While defending yourself against a deadly force threat means you can use deadly force in return, I would be careful to avoid giving the impression that your training strategy is "to kill" in any situation where you are threatened. IMO it's sort of a semantic legal game, but it's one you have to play if you want to "win" the legal post-confrontation event.
 

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Well..I would hesitate to believe or state that a martial arts response to an attack is so formulaic that you HAVE to carry through with a technique even if it becomes obvious that the opponent is incapacitated or that you can depart the scene in safety. If it's not obvious that the opponent is no longer a deadly threat to you than you continue until the opponent IS no longer a threat, or you believe you can depart in COMPLETE safety.

You shouldn't believe that you "have to complete your technique with a head stomp" because...well...that's the technique.

While defending yourself against a deadly force threat means you can use deadly force in return, I would be careful to avoid giving the impression that your training strategy is "to kill" in any situation where you are threatened. IMO it's sort of a semantic legal game, but it's one you have to play if you want to "win" the legal post-confrontation event.
Totally understand. And maybe this belongs over in the self defense pillars thread. In that thread, a common theme is about mindset being critical in self defense. I'm not talking just about the techniques. It's the mentality. "I do this, and it's likely to be "game over" for the bad guy. But if not, I do this... and then it's game over. But if it's not, I do this." There's a mentality being taught here, along with an overt strategy that stops when the bad guy is... what? Because "game over" speaks to a degree of finality in my mind.

And, I'm not trying to suggest that people are idiotic robots who can't apply discretion in the heat of the moment. I'm just struck by the incongruity between stopping when the bad guy is "game over" and what we're discussing as likely to lead to criminal liability. The two sound a lot alike, to my untrained ear. As described, each technique is designed to take the bad guy out. Punches to the throat, elbows to the back of the head and neck, stomping on the ground. Add other techniques intended to kill or maim (eye gouges, etc), and there's a disconnect here. Isn't there?
 

Tgace

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I think I see what you mean...it's somewhat analogous to the "the cops shot the guy *gasp* 10 times!!" meme.

Sure any individual shot can be "lethal", but the reality is that you can't just fire one shot, wait to see if it works, then fire another...repeat..repeat.

You shoot as long as the threat appears to continue to be a threat and you stop when the threat is gone. The number of shots required will vary widely.
 

Steve

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Well, sort of the opposite of that. If anything, the process as described by kman would be more analogous to, " I shoot him center mass, and that's likely game over. But if not, I'll shoot him again and that's game over. If not, I'll shoot him again." In other words, while I agree with you that people are not automatons, there's a degree of analysis suggested in K-mans description that is opposite of the idea that you shoot 10 times because that's how you train. Which is it? Does the technical chain end with a head stomp or is there tactical analysis at work? And by extension, is the gun fired until empty or is the person with the gun legally expected to shoot, determine whether ti's game over, and then shoot again?

Really, I'm not sure there's a good answer, frankly. I'm just interested in discussing the disconnect between training people to kill and teaching them that self defense is legally a matter of what is reasonable under the circumstances.
 

Steve

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I posted this over in the sel defense pillars thread, where it's more on-topic. Hopefully, it'll get some informative responses.
 

K-man

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I guess I just don't know that I understand what "game over" means in the progression that K-man describes. What is "game over?" Or, asked another way, if the chain of techniques ends with curb stomping a guy into unconsciousness, and each step along the way is measured against the bad guy's ability to do some harm (do anything at all?), is anything along the way reasonable?
Perhaps if you have any friends with very young kids who play video games about what 'game over' means, but for the sake of completeness here it is a colloquial expression for 'the fight is finished'. I thought writing was meant to be your passion.

Can you guys with more experience with the legal system share how this works out? Let's say I start by exploding on the guy with simultaneous strikes to his wrsit and his throat. What would "game over" look like with this technique?
Are you for real? A single strike to the carotid sinus causing your opponent to collapse to the ground looks to me like game over. If you do anything beyond that, the legal protection of self defence no longer applies and if you inflict further damage it falls under retaliation.
For a better picture ... Game Over ... the attacker is lying unconcious on the ground.

Would "game over" be reasonable self defense?
Unbelievable!

What about the multiple knees to the abdomen, followed by repeated strikes to the back of the neck and head? Game over looks like what? Is that likely to be viewed as "reasonable?"
Good grief, I've seen the same technique done in the ring. The knees to the abdomen obviously cease if the guy falls to the ground, it's that simple! If he doesn't fall to the ground there is a good chance he will bend forward exposing his neck and back of head. One good strike should end it. If it doesn't he'll be hit again.

As soon as he can't continue to fight or be a threat it is 'game over'. You can't continue to hit or even stomp.

What part of that does not comply with the laws of reasonable force? OK, I'll give you an example of where it would not be appropriate. A five year old attacks you with his plastic sword. Do I need to continue?

Self defence is your legal defence to your use of physical force against someone who is a threat to you or others around you. If it is seen as unreasonable in the situation you will end up defending yourself in court, no different to unlawful use of a firearm.
 

Steve

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Perhaps if you have any friends with very young kids who play video games about what 'game over' means, but for the sake of completeness here it is a colloquial expression for 'the fight is finished'. I thought writing was meant to be your passion.

Are you for real? A single strike to the carotid sinus causing your opponent to collapse to the ground looks to me like game over. If you do anything beyond that, the legal protection of self defence no longer applies and if you inflict further damage it falls under retaliation.
For a better picture ... Game Over ... the attacker is lying unconcious on the ground.

Unbelievable!

Good grief, I've seen the same technique done in the ring. The knees to the abdomen obviously cease if the guy falls to the ground, it's that simple! If he doesn't fall to the ground there is a good chance he will bend forward exposing his neck and back of head. One good strike should end it. If it doesn't he'll be hit again.

As soon as he can't continue to fight or be a threat it is 'game over'. You can't continue to hit or even stomp.

What part of that does not comply with the laws of reasonable force? OK, I'll give you an example of where it would not be appropriate. A five year old attacks you with his plastic sword. Do I need to continue?

Self defence is your legal defence to your use of physical force against someone who is a threat to you or others around you. If it is seen as unreasonable in the situation you will end up defending yourself in court, no different to unlawful use of a firearm.
The personal insults you layer in are unnecessary. I do write professionally and for fun. I've never claimed to be a better writer than anyone around here.

Regarding the rest, I'm just really tired of bickering with you, K-man. I'm sure you have some terrific points in your post, but frankly, I just can't get past your overt hostility.
 
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