In the forever changing worlds of law enforcement and criminal law, there are two
embedded laws in the criminal justice system that contain not only striking similarities, but also contain hidden applications that have been used in an inconsistent and yet, an unpredictable manner. These two laws, the Stand-your ground law and the Castle Doctrine are the two laws which have, within the last three years, have garnered both national and local attention when reviewing exactly how these laws are applied, justified, prosecuted, used, and defended.
The Stand- your- ground law essentially allows an individual to use force, whether deadly or not, in self-defense when there is reasonable or ...view middle of the document...
THE STAND YOUR GROUND AND CASTLE DOCTRINE LAWS 3
The Castle Doctrine is a common law doctrine that designates a person's abode, residence, living location or dwelling, (or, in some states, any place legally occupied, such as a car or place of work) as a place in which the person has certain and assured protections, defenses, and immunities. These provisions afforded within the Castle Doctrines allow such a person, in certain circumstances, to attack an intruder instead of retreating.
Typically, deadly force is considered justified and a defensible homicide only in cases when the individual reasonably feared imminent danger, a peril of death, or receiving serious bodily harm to either oneself or another person. The doctrine is not a defined law that can be invoked, but is a set of principles which is incorporated in some form in the law of most states. Currently a total of forty-six states have incorporated the Castle Doctrine into law.
“The difference between the Castle Doctrine and Stand Your Ground laws is where they apply: The Castle Doctrine applies in a person’s home, and Stand Your Ground extends the right to any place the defender has a right to have a gun” (Lott).
“The statutes vary widely from state to state and may have minor, but crucial differences in their language and application. On the other end of the legal spectrum, some states have laws imposing a duty to retreat. A duty to retreat generally means that you can't resort to deadly force in self-defense if you can safely avoid the risk of harm or death (by running away, for example). If that is not an option, say if you were cornered or pinned down and facing serious harm or death, then you would be authorized to use deadly force in self-defense.” (Findlaw).
However, some states have adopted the Castle Doctrine and do not have the Stand-you ground law on the books. Some states are just the opposite, and some have both of the principles in their criminal defense and prosecution arsenals. The reasoning behind this can be consistent
THE STAND YOUR GROUND AND CASTLE DOCTRINE LAWS 4 with how many states interpret, construe, and understand each of these laws, or doctrines and base these perceptions and...