Not sure if this is the correct topic but What are my rights as a LA resident to protect myself and my property from harm/theft?

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Not sure if this is the correct topic but What are my rights as a LA resident to protect myself and my property from harm/theft?

I live in NO. Constantly I read about robberies, rapes, violent crimes, etc.
It’s a near hourly occurrence. I have been conceal carrying to protect myself
in the event of a situation but I’m not totally clear on the legality. If
someone approaches me menacingly about to do harm, what are my rights as far as
use of force goes? If someone steals or attempts to steal my property, can I
protect said property from theft? I know LA has a castle doctrine and I do not
have to retreat if I am not the aggressor I’m just unclear on when I can use
lethal force not necessarily shooting someone in the head, but I believe
shooting someone anywhere is considered lethal force correct me if I’m wrong.
I know I can use lethal force to protect against the act of a felony being
committed against myself or anyone else but every other situation is blurry to
me. Can someone provide some legal insight so I can educate myself and act
within my legal rights should a situation arise?

Asked on June 27, 2017 under Criminal Law, Louisiana

Answers:

SJZ, Member, New York Bar / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 3 years ago | Contributor

1) Yes, shooting someone is considered lethal force.
2) You cannot use lethal force EXCEPT in response to a reasonably credible threat of imminent, or immediate, bodily harm to yourself or another. Some examples:
a) Someone says they will "get you later": that is not imminent, so you can't shoot; call the police on the person instead.
b) Someone is yelling at you and may be a scary looking person, but has not threatened violence or brandished a weapons; there is no credible threat and you can't shoot. Call the police.
c) Someone threatens to harm you, but clearly cannot--does not have a weapon and is visibly much smaller or frailer than you, or is so drunk as to be incapable of a credible attack. Dont' shoot; call the police.
d) Someone grabs your bag and runs--you can't shoot to get it back. Call the police.
e) Someone pulls out a weapon or implement that can be used as a weapon, when they are in range to attack you and have acted in a way that reasonably leads you to believe they may use the weapon on you: you may defend yourself, including by shooting them.
f) Somene shoves, grabs, etc. you, or cocks a fist back to strike you: you may defend yourself, including by shooting.
g) Someone suddenly rushes you a way that reasoanbly seems to indicate an attempt to harm you: you may defend yourself, including by shooting.
h) Someone *does* attack you: as long as the attack is onging, you may use force, including a gun, on them; but if the attack ends and they try to run way, you can't use force--you can only shoot to defend, not to avenge or capture.


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