So is bear spray a legal non lethal defense?
Against bears yes.
sorry couldn’t resist
It turns out that there is a difference between less-lethal and non-lethal defense. I would have to agree with citizendo, for bears yes it is non-lethal. Now for humans it is a bit more complicated. It would be less-lethal because you never know how someone is going to react to it.
Maybe someone develops a reaction to the spray and somehow is life-threatening. That now changes the intention of the spray. This leads me to shotshells with plastic, rubber, or “bean bags” are all less-lethal, again because it depends on velocity and point of impact whether or not someone can be killed.
If you visit sights that sell this type of ammunition or self-defense items, they include a disclaimer that states that their product have no guarantee to be non-lethal only less-lethal with the chance that someone can be killed.
Sorry for being so long winded, but that is my input.
@scorpionind65 thanks that’s what I was looking for…an insightful answer
No problem, Randyb. The coincidence is that I was just looking up shotshells and looked for non-lethal on my search engine. When I visited a site that is when I was educated on this. So I just learned it myself. Crazy huh?
Nancy and I both carry Mace brand Bear Pepper Mace in our vehicles and one at home, it is the same 2% OC
as the container you carry in your pocket, it’s just in a larger container under higher pressure and has a further range which would be great for a crowd, just like the large containers the police carry.
My bear spray has 2% Capsaicin and “related capsaicinoids” derived from Oleoresin and Capsicum. According to Wikipedia, LEO grade pepper spray is between 1.5-2.0% Oleoresin Capsaicin. So ingredients wise it is no different than strong pepper spray. That said, the label on my bear spray states, “it is violation of Federal law to use this product in a manner inconsistent with it’s labeling.” But it does not state which Federal law or Code/Regulation reference. As it will spray 35+ feet, there’s also a warning about irreversible eye damage of sprayed into eyes at close range.
@citizendo those conditions are what got me wondering
Those are the same violation warnings you will find on Wasp spray, Insect repellent or bleach and a 100 other products.
Same reason I have some hidden in house and one I carry
Fun fact: Shoot bear spray at the ground in front of a charging bear as they tend to point their face slightly down when running.
Personally, I wouldn’t blame someone for using bear spray to subdue an angry mob attempting to break down your gates or storming your steps. That may be prior to the threshold of castle law but obviously every situation (and camera angle) is subjective to interpretation. I would bet it is effective at spraying a whole line of people at range from my practice with these.
Yup I agree. I was just stating what I found on the can I have on hand.
I would check the can. I know wasp spray is NOT to be used in self-defense as it is a federal offense to use it on anything besides wasps.
Knowing that bear spray can cause permanent damage is a serious legal issue.
Carrying pepper spray for defense against humans is a much better option.
Not an an expert, speaking from my understanding of NC laws, where I live. It would be problematic here because our laws prohibit sprays in excess of 5 oz. I think most bear sprays are 10 oz. To my knowledge there is no language specifically prohibiting its use against “hoomans,” however a good lawyer could probably make your life miserable for doing so.
All of that said, my wife is not comfortable using firearms for self-defense. I’m considering keeping some bear spray at home because it has some tactical advantages: 25+ foot range, wide pattern, and lots of volume fast. Has the potential to keep the creeps out of bad-breath range.
I would like to stand on @Paul1’s shoulders and bring up size. I have never seen bear spray in a size that is convenient for keeping in your pocket. It sounds like there is a very good chance that use of bear spray can lead to some unneccessary issues due to using it off-label. Using it in your home with possible castle doctrine protections and “just using what was at hand” may help with that. BUT to carry it every day when you are wandering around the urban jungle, carrying it as a means of self defense, your hurdle just got a whole lot higher.
I don’t see why it wouldn’t be. If it can stop a grizzly bear it should be able to stop an enraged attacker long enough for someone to get to safety