Georgia College Student claims Self Defense

At face value how this story is written this person’s self defense claim seems really thin. The article seems to center around him basically calling the prosecutor a racist but that is irrelevant the reality is he used deadly force and the elements of what took place, in my humble opinion based on what have been learning here and from other resources about the legal process relative to self defense this case doesn’t look good for this guy…what are your thoughts ? Here’s the link to article :


Without knowing all of the details, there’s not much we can say about this situation.

What can we learn from what is alleged in the article: people taunting, throwing things at the car and trying to run people off the road?

The legal justification for using lethal force in a lot of states is imminent, unavoidable danger of death or grave bodily harm.

What would you do in this type of situation?


My opinion, it is pretty thin based on the facts presented in the article, which are very minimal. Lots of speculation, but regardless of provocation, where was his attempt to avoid? Did he slow down, speed up, turn off on a side street in an attempt to create distance between himself and the situation? How about disparity of force? He claims an object hit his car, and the article stated there was a chance a beer can was thrown, but he admits “an object” hit is car, not that he believed he was shot at, so you have that issue as well. My opinion, the defendant and his lawyer know its a thin self defense case at best that is not supported by the facts so they are using race in attempt to drum up media and public support in today’s super racially charged environment in order to get charges dropped or a not guilty that way. That said, there is a lot wrong on both sides, so no one is innocent, and for both sides, it seems to be a play stupid games, win stupid prizes situation. I also want to say there is more to the case as the defendant is the son of a fire chief, so for things to have still gone this far with that connection, there is clearly more that is not said.


The shooting out of a moving vehicle is not good IMO. He could have escaped and maybe got a plate number. If you tried to escape and the other car pursued then it may look better for you. Being young and immature can sometimes be someones downfall. But none the less it doesn’t look good in this case.

I cannot say what I’d do in his situation, second guessing is not productive.
The investigators agree with his description of factual side. If I sat on the jury, I would not convict.

1 Like

Not enough details. Taunting…no, throwing things at the car…unless it’s capable of causing bodily harm and/or death…no, trying to run people off the road…perhaps. Motor vehicles can be considered a deadly weapon under certain circumstances.

If the other driver made contact w/ my vehicle intent on causing bodily harm (otherwise why do it)…I would say yes, they are justified. But…at the same time, was all options for escaping and evading exhausted?

I might go one or two steps further. If in this particular case, it is determined the vehicle was used as a deadly weapon…would the driver of that vehicle be charged w/ a crime, and since a death occurred during the commission of the crime, would they then be culpable for that death?

1 Like

Not asking anyone to second guess what this person did. My question was more of a what would you do if you were being taunted, harassed, and possibly threatened with a vehicle on the road?

1 Like

Many people would do there best to hide or concealment, then others would try to find cover, sometimes that is not enough. There are many that may stampede like wild horses or those that who are fighting fear and never knowing or thinking things through for a positive answer to the trouble their In, will fall apart.

In this situation I know that I do not have legal reasons to stay present in this war, I can leave the grounds and not get
Involved at all, but I can not do this. In this case throwing and swinging like bottles and rocks can be considered something that can cause grave bodily injury. A swinging baseball bat or use of a car to run down people and cause major damage to all by deliberately running over some people can be deadly to anyone.

I would be there to help people to safety, make sure Police and EMS are called for help, with all respect if a drunk or crazy person is deciding to drive over a group of children or even one child, I would not hesitate to clear the children or if I can not do that and I can clearly use a firearm to stop the crazed driver and stop him cold with out injuries to others, that would be of my choosing to do so.

Taking full responsibility of my actions, think fast and clearly, and protect other people from harm. War is hell and it takes others with the same feelings, the same goals, and abilities to protect other people. Plus you can not enter this problem with any fear, maybe concerns and worries, but doing your best that you can with helping others. I am not a super hero.

This is a good scenario for “ Should I Shoot “, if you have to, YES, until the problem is stopped, finished, and no more.

William H Smith Jr.

1 Like

What if he already tried to drive away…at what point does driving too fast put yourself, passenger and others in danger if the attackers keep up with you and continue to drive you off the road?

Pull off an exit and go find help? Ok now you’ve slowed down enough for the attackers to get a good bead on your vehicle and actually run it off the road and/or if you stop allow them to attack your vehicle and potentially pull you out and drag you from it.? (this is virtually a non-option for a black man with a white woman in a situation where he’s being chased by a vehicle full of racists)

Not saying I agree/disagree with his actions at this point, just pointing out the thoughts that would be going through my head should this happen that we may want to consider as we cast judgement on this scenario.


Fair question, the #1 step - check your ego, keep a cool head.
It should become clear very quickly, if you can evade another vehicle, or if they are set on making an aggressive contact. Do not stop, passengers in stopped vehicle are vulnerable. Do what you need to survive, vehicles can be deadly weapons.

1 Like

I’ve taken defensive and offensive driving classes, keep in mind I drive a turbo charged Nissan 370 Touring Convertible

I’m going to brake hard to get tag, call State Troopers where I am at, and ask for intervention from nearest cruiser, keep on phone and video then pass them and get away. I seriously doubt they are in a truck they can catch me in.

1 Like

Many things going on here. Surprisingly with Hotlanta so close, and ties to the young man to downstate SC, there wasn’t anything in the local news on this when it happened back in June. It was covered by CBS on their national broadcast, and in their report, it indicates that alcohol may have been involved with the truck load of teens. One of the teens in the truck has also been charged with obstruction for withholding information.

What surprises me is the lack of video from the incident. Even if there’s no dash-cam footage from either vehicle, surely someone would have whipped out a cell phone & started recording. In the past, I’ve had my fiance start recording road rage with her phone, while I was on the phone with 911. Now I have a dash-cam so that I don’t have to worry about having footage of what happens.

1 Like

Pure speculation, but may be why the obstruction charge was brought up.


Not knowing all the details …

I would focus my attention on hard braking, reversing direction, while my passenger dialed 911 to notify police and, hopefully, provide a license plate number. Deploying my firearm is a very last-ditch event, only when all other options are exhausted. I’ll expose myself as the ultimate hypocrite, because I’ve been trained and have consistently railed against brandishing. However in this case, I would show my weapon before I fired from one moving vehicle into another moving vehicle, violating everything I’ve been trained!

1 Like

Brandishing a firearm to warm someone that you have it and willing to use it, may get you in harmsway. If you get reported in a wrongful way to the police, you become available to be arrested and fined or worse.

You are important to everyone. I have been falsely accused as well of brandishing and I was told to leave the building’s grounds. The strong wind blew my shirt open and the so called friend of mine reported me to two police officers. Good bye !

No charges.

The bad guys may be on chemical dependacy and could careless; bad drug. They just walk through you even if you wound them. I’m not there to see what you saw and I will not judge your call, but care for your well being.

1 Like

William, agree 100%. I was trained to never, ever show your concealed firearm unless you’re going to use it. That being said, I simply wouldn’t fire into a moving vehicle full of people.