What is a threat?

If threr is an argument, and one person says, “I have a gun, and I’ll shoot you,” can you use deadly force against them, or do you need to wait for the gun to be pulled?

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It depends.
First, you have to have witness to prove that statement was told and you have to have reasonable belief and fear that the other person is going to harm or kill you.
But still - retreat is the best defense.

Be ready to pull the firearm, but don’t pull it yet. Be ready to retreat and verbal warning. Observe, Orient, Decide, Act.

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I think that a threat is anything around you that makes you or anyone around you feel uncomfortable but then you have direct threat where you fearing for your life feeling uncomfortable or fearing for your life that’s how I access a threat
uncomfortable-you stay on high alert
fear for life- you have hand on weapon in holster

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You didn’t say what the argument was about and how heated it is/was. If you threatened their life and they tried to defend their own with a threat it would definitely be illegal. I agree with @Jerzy
Personally if I have time to question myself if I should pull a gun I will try not to.

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I guess what makes me give that answer is about 5 years ago a friend of mine was working in convenience store man comes in says he has a gun and he wants all the money 2 people at the counter heard the conversation bystander says hand in coat pocket with something pointing at my friend turns out it was a wooden gun painted black but it being pulled he reacted by his training when he seen what he believes is a handgun coming out of his pocket because of other people their to protect all concerned he draws and fires not knowing at the time it was a painted wood gun my friend had to do time for manslaughter even with witnesses verifying story and the police response was you dont pull until your looking down the barrel and bystander spoke up and said by that time we would have all been dead the officer said that’s the law so a lot of work still to do

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As taught by Massad Ayoob and others, the logic here is would a reasonable person consider that the person making that statement has the ability and opportunity to attack you, and further, does the situation put you in immediate jeopardy from that threat? This analysis is based on the AOJ (ability/opportunity/jeopardy) analysis of a possible threat, tempered by the legal standard of what a reasonable person would perceive.

So, more context is needed to answer your question. For instance, if that statement was over the phone, then there is no immediate jeopardy, and no, you would not be justified to pull your gun and use it as soon as you see that person. If, however, that person makes the statement in an angry voice while standing near you with a hand in his pocket, then yes, you could be justified in drawing and firing. Of course, your life would become much more complicated if there are no witnesses to corroborate your story.

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That’s what I said in the discussion. About witnesses hearing it. I felt that not to pull weapon but be super ready.

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Also my way of thinking. Over the phone would only make me chuckle. I mean face to face and the threat. I think I would be ready to pull, but would rather de-escalate and leave.

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Threat as defined in the dictionary:
A statement of an intention to inflict pain, injury, damage, or other hostile action on someone in retribution for something done or not done. The original post describes a verbal threat. If the person is not reaching for anything and you can retreat that would be the best option.

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Would you wait? Time is a luxury in a self-defense situation.
You don’t draw on a drawn gun. So, there’s that.

However, if taking cover or retreating safely is an option, I would take it before drawing.

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A threat is considered an act of persuading someone to do something by using force or threats.
Any other questions?

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Here’s a question. Do you think it may be very hard to sell a jury on why you used deadly force based on a verbal threat?

Do you think that there may be something else or some other action that has to go with just the verbal offering of a threat?

My reason for posing the question is: In defense, given the scenario you’ve just presented, there may be the opportunity to de-escalate the situation while simultaneously attempting your escape from the situation, prepping yourself to return fire should the unthinkable occur, or in case the perceived threat actually moves to make good on the threat.

There have been many people who have said one thing (bragging or boasting) and then the other happened (there was no gun…only hot air). Saying you have a gun doesn’t always mean that a gun really exists. You shoot and no gun is found, now what? “Well, he said, he had a gun and will shoot me” may not be the thing that frees you that day.

Is it at least reasonable to consider that there has to be something that goes with the threat, i.e., posturing, movement towards a draw, etc.?

And then, upon hearing the threat, what is your immediate action, i.e., are you trying to de-escalate while moving toward cover, or trying to escape the environment, etc.?

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Can’t always be sure what the police officer on the scene will decide, but I think you have a reasonable chance with a jury if you and other witnesses all believed your life to be in imminent danger. It’s easier to meet the “reasonable person” standard when you have witnesses corroborating your story and supporting your decision.

Also, don’t forget that if you use an object that looks like a firearm to commit a crime, you’re probably going to be charged with a gun-related crime in many states. And if you point a real-ish looking toy gun at a police officer, you’re going to get shot. Same standard should apply for all Americans.

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Hmm… I can agree with that. And for a LEO to say what you’ve highlighted is an uninformed LEO that went to sleep in class when they were teaching reasonable force vs deadly force. However, this is not about Police Science. Because the law in many states provide language that would suggest “a fear.” If you can demonstrate (to a jury) (if it goes there) what brought about the fear and it’s such that a “reasonable person” would have acted in the same manner and that your actions were warranted, then you were justified. Now, what those mechanics are is anybody’s guess, and it sure doesn’t have to be a gun that brings about the “fear.”

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But it’s not they can 9 out of 10 times shoot an unarmed man and nothing happens to them. We pull a gun on an intruder your called the aggressor, dad was a sheriff and he told me someone forces their way in your house you make sure you shoot to kill he said to negotiate if you can but if he has any weapon in his hand shoot

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For that reason, I’m grateful for the USCCA Attorney Network. Let the lawyer do what lawyers do. I don’t want to shoot anyone ever, but I will do my level best to ensure that he don’t shoot me! That’s all I’ll say about that. Work it out whichever way that you will, but that’s my story. We all have to decide whether our actions will be worth going to jail for, or worth dying for. So, to help us make these kinds of decisions, we train, and we consult with experienced attorneys on the matter, primarily, in the states that we reside.

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I brought this up because my friend witnessed this and asked me. I said that it was a hard question to answer, you would need a lot of witnesses to the threat, and I wasn’t sure what to do. Keep the replies coming, we’re making people think, and getting some great answers. Thanks.

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I have told everybody at VA this, do whatever you want to me I signed up for it. But when you start affecting my family and taking chance putting them out in the cold that’s when it turns from duty to intentionally hurting. They can say whatever they want but after going to operation stand down here and the mission one common denominator with homeless vets is they tried to get disability after they had their pension and the Dept of VA bullies them. So either they give up or lose their families that’s how we get repaid for endless nights of nightmares and have trust issues I believe when vets are first in line for housing food and financial assistance we will be right as a country. Because their would be none of it if we didnt fight for it

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I would refer you to Lt Col. Jeff Coopers combat mindset and color code.
Depending upon the temperature of the argument, the location and my options, deescalation is easier than convincing a jury!
What if’s are fun but more information is required to make a deadly force decision!
Means, motive and opportunity!

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@Thomas86 I want to follow your argument, but I’m not sure that I can right now. The juxtaposition of the Op’s subject, and your argument do not seem to quantify. So, the question is, is this the thread for this particular argument? I can’t see how it does. No disrespect meant here.

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