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Killing Your Abuser: Is It a Crime?

DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
AlbinoBunny
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8/17/2013 10:28:02 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

This.
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DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
000ike
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8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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8/17/2013 12:48:26 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

The question becomes, at what point is your life in danger?
If I say I am going to kill you now, and walk towards a gun on the table, at what point is your life in danger? When I threaten? When I move toward the gun? When I grab it? When I point it?

Since the abuse can happen at any time, it is a constant threat. However, killing someone in their sleep is clearly not a threatening time, but it may be the only escape. BWS is difficult to prove, or at least should be if the abuse isn't immenent.

Killing in their sleep is hardest to prove.
Then preemptive killing, like stabbing them at the dinner table because he was likely going to beat you for serving dry turkey, is less difficult.
Killing them while they are physically beating you is the easiest.
My work here is, finally, done.
Noumena
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8/17/2013 1:33:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

Inb4 Bobert
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Jack212
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8/17/2013 3:38:00 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
It's called "provocation". The test is whether a sane, reasonable person would have acted the same way. Retaliating against an abuser is one example.

Abusers are scum. There should be a bounty on them.
Khaos_Mage
Posts: 23,214
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8/17/2013 3:53:52 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 3:38:00 PM, Jack212 wrote:
It's called "provocation". The test is whether a sane, reasonable person would have acted the same way. Retaliating against an abuser is one example.

Abusers are scum. There should be a bounty on them.

But, is it provocation to shoot someone while they sleep?
My work here is, finally, done.
ClassicRobert
Posts: 2,487
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8/17/2013 3:59:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 1:33:47 PM, Noumena wrote:
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

Inb4 Bobert

DN and I already sorted it out. Ike already said my thoughts.
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DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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8/17/2013 4:02:12 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 12:48:26 PM, Khaos_Mage wrote:
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

The question becomes, at what point is your life in danger?
If I say I am going to kill you now, and walk towards a gun on the table, at what point is your life in danger? When I threaten? When I move toward the gun? When I grab it? When I point it?

Since the abuse can happen at any time, it is a constant threat. However, killing someone in their sleep is clearly not a threatening time, but it may be the only escape. BWS is difficult to prove, or at least should be if the abuse isn't immenent.

Killing in their sleep is hardest to prove.
Then preemptive killing, like stabbing them at the dinner table because he was likely going to beat you for serving dry turkey, is less difficult.
Killing them while they are physically beating you is the easiest.

Aye, but if you're suffering from BPS (it's PERSON, not WOMAN, you sexist, lol), you aren't exactly going to be thinking rationally about "when is the most legally opportune time to kill my abuser?"
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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8/17/2013 4:10:29 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

I'm not getting your point. The OP asked for what we think. I just told you what I think, and yes it happens to run counter to the intentions of BPS-invoking lawyers. So?
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
bladerunner060
Posts: 7,126
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8/17/2013 4:12:29 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

A Battered Spouse Syndrome defense is not an insanity defense as a general rule.

A true insanity defense (depending on jurisdiction) makes the case that the person, at the time of the incident, was unable to distinguish right from wrong, not just that they had some kind of deficiency.
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YYW
Posts: 36,252
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8/17/2013 4:17:43 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

Unless an action is in response to an imminent threat, it cannot be called, in the strictest self defense -but it might be called excusable murder depending on the circumstance. While I agree with the idea that an abused wife's shooting her husband is not something for which she should always be held accountable (like, if she were in a similar situation to the women who were found in Ohio), that does not mean that the law should sanction it either or that it could be called self defense.
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000ike
Posts: 11,196
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8/17/2013 4:23:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:17:43 PM, YYW wrote:

Unless an action is in response to an imminent threat, it cannot be called, in the strictest self defense -but it might be called excusable murder depending on the circumstance. While I agree with the idea that an abused wife's shooting her husband is not something for which she should always be held accountable (like, if she were in a similar situation to the women who were found in Ohio), that does not mean that the law should sanction it either or that it could be called self defense.

That's not a good example; that was active imprisonment, among other atrocities - meaning that the crime was continuous. You can't defend yourself against a crime that has already happened. I wouldn't begrudge a battered wife that acts in an extreme manner, but that can't serve as an excuse anymore than insanity serves as an excuse. If BPS can be proven to be as destructive of judgment as insanity, then the BPS victim needs to be mandated to attend some remedial program, or...just go to jail.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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8/17/2013 4:27:39 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:10:29 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

I'm not getting your point. The OP asked for what we think. I just told you what I think, and yes it happens to run counter to the intentions of BPS-invoking lawyers. So?

You only countered self-defense.

Why is BPS an unacceptable defense, period?
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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8/17/2013 4:28:57 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:12:29 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

A Battered Spouse Syndrome defense is not an insanity defense as a general rule.

A true insanity defense (depending on jurisdiction) makes the case that the person, at the time of the incident, was unable to distinguish right from wrong, not just that they had some kind of deficiency.

Eh, I suppose it IS all jurisdictional. I know where I live the "insanity defense" includes any sort of mental defect that would remove accountability.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
YYW
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8/17/2013 4:29:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:23:47 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:17:43 PM, YYW wrote:

Unless an action is in response to an imminent threat, it cannot be called, in the strictest self defense -but it might be called excusable murder depending on the circumstance. While I agree with the idea that an abused wife's shooting her husband is not something for which she should always be held accountable (like, if she were in a similar situation to the women who were found in Ohio), that does not mean that the law should sanction it either or that it could be called self defense.

That's not a good example; that was active imprisonment, among other atrocities - meaning that the crime was continuous. You can't defend yourself against a crime that has already happened.

As I thought was implicit: if the abuse is ongoing, and to that sort of extent, I could understand a wife who was in a situation similar to the women in Ohio killing her husband. But, as I said above, I don't think it could be called self defense.
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000ike
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8/17/2013 4:31:10 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:27:39 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:

You only countered self-defense.

Why is BPS an unacceptable defense, period?

Why is insanity an unacceptable defense? The insane are not simply allowed to walk out of the courtroom free to do whatever. Either BPS falls in the self-defense camp or the judgment-limiting condition camp. The former is self-destructive of the argument and simply doesn't apply. The latter demands some remedial action.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
000ike
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8/17/2013 4:38:45 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:29:10 PM, YYW wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:23:47 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:17:43 PM, YYW wrote:

Unless an action is in response to an imminent threat, it cannot be called, in the strictest self defense -but it might be called excusable murder depending on the circumstance. While I agree with the idea that an abused wife's shooting her husband is not something for which she should always be held accountable (like, if she were in a similar situation to the women who were found in Ohio), that does not mean that the law should sanction it either or that it could be called self defense.

That's not a good example; that was active imprisonment, among other atrocities - meaning that the crime was continuous. You can't defend yourself against a crime that has already happened.

As I thought was implicit: if the abuse is ongoing, and to that sort of extent, I could understand a wife who was in a situation similar to the women in Ohio killing her husband. But, as I said above, I don't think it could be called self defense.

The husband has to be holding his wife captive in order for the situation to be even remotely similar to the Ohio kidnappings, and at that point, the crimes would be beyond the implications of BPS.

BPS, by itself, no captivity involved, is not a continuous crime but a series of separate incidences of crime. Unless the homicide occurs during one of those incidences, it's not justified.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
YYW
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8/17/2013 4:42:53 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:38:45 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:29:10 PM, YYW wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:23:47 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:17:43 PM, YYW wrote:

Unless an action is in response to an imminent threat, it cannot be called, in the strictest self defense -but it might be called excusable murder depending on the circumstance. While I agree with the idea that an abused wife's shooting her husband is not something for which she should always be held accountable (like, if she were in a similar situation to the women who were found in Ohio), that does not mean that the law should sanction it either or that it could be called self defense.

That's not a good example; that was active imprisonment, among other atrocities - meaning that the crime was continuous. You can't defend yourself against a crime that has already happened.

As I thought was implicit: if the abuse is ongoing, and to that sort of extent, I could understand a wife who was in a situation similar to the women in Ohio killing her husband. But, as I said above, I don't think it could be called self defense.

The husband has to be holding his wife captive in order for the situation to be even remotely similar to the Ohio kidnappings, and at that point, the crimes would be beyond the implications of BPS.

And your point?

BPS, by itself, no captivity involved, is not a continuous crime but a series of separate incidences of crime. Unless the homicide occurs during one of those incidences, it's not justified.

You have your opinion, but I'll leave the decision on that to the courts who are, after all, the ones who decide.
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DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 5:05:44 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:31:10 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:27:39 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:

You only countered self-defense.

Why is BPS an unacceptable defense, period?

Why is insanity an unacceptable defense? The insane are not simply allowed to walk out of the courtroom free to do whatever. Either BPS falls in the self-defense camp or the judgment-limiting condition camp. The former is self-destructive of the argument and simply doesn't apply. The latter demands some remedial action.

I'm speaking strictly about whether there is a conviction involved. When a person is deemed not guilty by reason of mental defect, they do still go to either a rehabilitation program or a mental hospital, or something similar. Acquittal doesn't always mean a person is free to go right then and there.

I'm more concerned about the actual conviction/lack thereof. If a person is convicted of murder, their life has essentially been ruined forever, even if there is a minimal prison term or program.

Of course, even being charged with murder but then acquitted still reflects HORRIBLY on your reputation, but still, a conviction is worse, and shouldn't happen for someone who has suffered years of abuse to the point of developing a psychological illness.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
wrichcirw
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8/17/2013 5:07:16 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

I disagree. I think this is where a rather strict adherence to reciprocity would prove to be useful. You don't use deadly force to reciprocate against non-deadly force, for example.

If it "adds up", that's due to a failure to reciprocate by the victim, either by failing to call the cops when appropriate, failing to chide the spouse when appropriate, etc...

In cases of consistent domestic abuse, I'm almost certain a divorce court would heavily side with the victim, GIVEN a lot of recorded abuse. Had the victim not called the cops often in order to have it build up so s/he would be justified in shooting the perpetrator, I think that would be highly improper, as that doesn't give the perpetrator a chance at reform.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?
bladerunner060
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8/17/2013 5:08:08 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 4:28:57 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:12:29 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

A Battered Spouse Syndrome defense is not an insanity defense as a general rule.

A true insanity defense (depending on jurisdiction) makes the case that the person, at the time of the incident, was unable to distinguish right from wrong, not just that they had some kind of deficiency.

Eh, I suppose it IS all jurisdictional. I know where I live the "insanity defense" includes any sort of mental defect that would remove accountability.

Battered Person Syndrome doesn't remove accountability, I don't think.

I think it's more properly and generally a mitigating factor unless there's a solid argument for why the killing was absolutely necessary for the circumstances.

Just for the reference of those who might want broader context:

http://en.wikipedia.org...
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DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 5:11:22 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 5:07:16 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

I disagree. I think this is where a rather strict adherence to reciprocity would prove to be useful. You don't use deadly force to reciprocate against non-deadly force, for example.

If it "adds up", that's due to a failure to reciprocate by the victim, either by failing to call the cops when appropriate, failing to chide the spouse when appropriate, etc...

In cases of consistent domestic abuse, I'm almost certain a divorce court would heavily side with the victim, GIVEN a lot of recorded abuse. Had the victim not called the cops often in order to have it build up so s/he would be justified in shooting the perpetrator, I think that would be highly improper, as that doesn't give the perpetrator a chance at reform.

Right, but the issue is that when domestic violence is cyclical, the victim develops a psychological illness that causes an extremely distorted perception of the world that would not allow for a victim to think as rationally as you suggest. Symptoms include:

The abused thinks that the violence was his or her fault.
The abused has an inability to place the responsibility for the violence elsewhere.
The abused fears for his/her life and/or the lives of his/her children (if present).
The abused has an irrational belief that the abuser is omnipresent and omniscient.

In other words, the victim cannot understand the concept that his/her abuser is at fault, and is constantly in fear for his/her life, while also believing that his/her abuser is everywhere ready to strike. It creates, in essence, a complete inability for a way out that doesn't involve external intervention.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
DetectableNinja
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8/17/2013 5:15:34 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 5:08:08 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:28:57 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:12:29 PM, bladerunner060 wrote:
At 8/17/2013 4:02:47 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 12:07:04 PM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:55:00 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:22:21 AM, 000ike wrote:
At 8/17/2013 11:07:57 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 8:45:50 AM, 000ike wrote:
The entire point of the legality of lethal self-defense is the urgency of the circumstance. If there is no immediate danger, there is no justification for the homicide. Since, however, it can be demonstrated that the emotional precursors to the crime are psychologically impelled, we can divide the consequences, whether through a significant reduction of sentence or order to some rehabilitation program.

You can't justifiably kill people for things they have done in the past or things they might do in the future (if not, you're opening a massive legal sinkhole), so battered person syndrome is at best a mediating circumstance for the individual's inevitable conviction.

The issue is that battered person syndrome, as an actual disorder, literally carries as one of its symptoms the definition of self-defense: fearing for your life. This fear is essentially constant, meaning you feel like your life is in danger at every moment.

A precondition of most self-defense laws is that a reasonable person would feel that his life is in danger. By establishing the perpetrator as having a psychologically warped state, you violate the clause, and legally shoot yourself in the foot, so to speak.

But even if you don't buy it as self-defense, it could still count for insanity.

Hence rehabilitation program or reduced sentence

But the point of the BPS defense is so that you don't get convicted AT ALL.

A Battered Spouse Syndrome defense is not an insanity defense as a general rule.

A true insanity defense (depending on jurisdiction) makes the case that the person, at the time of the incident, was unable to distinguish right from wrong, not just that they had some kind of deficiency.

Eh, I suppose it IS all jurisdictional. I know where I live the "insanity defense" includes any sort of mental defect that would remove accountability.

Battered Person Syndrome doesn't remove accountability, I don't think.

I think it's more properly and generally a mitigating factor unless there's a solid argument for why the killing was absolutely necessary for the circumstances.

Just for the reference of those who might want broader context:

http://en.wikipedia.org...

I think that misinterprets the whole point of a mental defect argument. A mental defect argument - specifically a BPS argument - is entirely acknowledging that killing the person wasn't likely necessary, but still argues that, within the mind of the defendant at the time, that was their only option for self-preservation: meaning that they aren't culpable.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
wrichcirw
Posts: 11,196
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8/17/2013 5:17:47 PM
Posted: 3 years ago
At 8/17/2013 5:11:22 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 8/17/2013 5:07:16 PM, wrichcirw wrote:
At 8/17/2013 7:51:25 AM, DetectableNinja wrote:
This issue was recently brought up to me, and I think it's definitely an interesting one to consider.

Essentially, when a husband abuses his wife, or wife abuses her husband, or parent abuses his/her child over time to the point where the victim of the abuse finally "snaps," if you will, and retaliates by killing his/her abuser, should we consider that a crime? I know currently, legal systems generally do consider it murder to some degree. However, it would be my argument that in fact, it's self-defense.

If a person is domestically abused consistently (ie, to the extent of developing battered person syndrome), I thing that it is entirely permissible to retaliate. I think that after reaching such a point, there is a definite implicit and reasonable fear for one's own well-being and even life.

Of course, this raises the issue of whether defense should only be exercised when your life is literally in danger at that particular moment versus preemptively defending yourself.

But either way, what are your thoughts?

I disagree. I think this is where a rather strict adherence to reciprocity would prove to be useful. You don't use deadly force to reciprocate against non-deadly force, for example.

If it "adds up", that's due to a failure to reciprocate by the victim, either by failing to call the cops when appropriate, failing to chide the spouse when appropriate, etc...

In cases of consistent domestic abuse, I'm almost certain a divorce court would heavily side with the victim, GIVEN a lot of recorded abuse. Had the victim not called the cops often in order to have it build up so s/he would be justified in shooting the perpetrator, I think that would be highly improper, as that doesn't give the perpetrator a chance at reform.

Right, but the issue is that when domestic violence is cyclical, the victim develops a psychological illness that causes an extremely distorted perception of the world that would not allow for a victim to think as rationally as you suggest. Symptoms include:

The abused thinks that the violence was his or her fault.
The abused has an inability to place the responsibility for the violence elsewhere.
The abused fears for his/her life and/or the lives of his/her children (if present).
The abused has an irrational belief that the abuser is omnipresent and omniscient.

In other words, the victim cannot understand the concept that his/her abuser is at fault, and is constantly in fear for his/her life, while also believing that his/her abuser is everywhere ready to strike. It creates, in essence, a complete inability for a way out that doesn't involve external intervention.

1) I'm guessing you meant "persistent" or "consistent" instead of "cyclical".
2) On your four points, admittedly I am not familiar with the circumstances that would lead to the first two or the last one, but the third can either easily be resolved via police once "safe" or would easily justify self-defense via deadly force (thereby nullifying your concerns).
3) To my knowledge there are plenty of help groups to address the need for external intervention. You may have a point about the person not being able to access those help groups if they are isolated. That really does come down to one's friendships though.
At 8/9/2013 9:41:24 AM, wrichcirw wrote:
If you are civil with me, I will be civil to you. If you decide to bring unreasonable animosity to bear in a reasonable discussion, then what would you expect other than to get flustered?