DE 5.11. JUSTIFICATION – USE OF FORCE IN SELF-PROTECTION

DE 5.11. JUSTIFICATION – USE OF FORCE IN SELF-PROTECTION

State: Delaware

 

DELAWARE PATTERN CRIMINAL JURY INSTRUCTIONS

DE 5.11.  JUSTIFICATION – USE OF FORCE IN SELF-PROTECTION

The defendant has asserted the defense against the charge of [charge] that the defendant was justified in using force in self-defense.  This defense is available if the defendant believed, in the circumstances as they occurred, that the force used was immediately necessary to protect the defendant against the use of unlawful force by another person.

“Unlawful force” is force:

that is not justified; and

is used against a person without that person’s consent.

A person using protective force may estimate the necessity of such force, under the circumstances that the person believes to exist.  The person is not required to retreat, surrender possession, or refrain from any lawful action.

The use of force is not justified in resisting arrest, if the defendant knows or should know that the arrest is being made by a peace officer, regardless of whether or not the arrest is lawful.

The use of deadly force is justifiable if the defendant believes that such force is necessary to protect the defendant against death; serious physical injury;kidnaping; or sexual intercourse compelled by the force or threat of another person.

[The use of deadly force is not justifiable in either one of the following two

circumstances:

the defendant, with the purpose of causing death or serious physical injury, provoked the use of force in the same encounter; or

the defendant knew that the necessity of using deadly force could have been avoided with complete safety:  by retreating; by surrendering possession of a thing to a person who claims a right to such thing; or by complying with a demand that the defendant not perform an act, which the defendant was not legally obligated to perform.]

However, the defendant is not obligated to retreat in or from the defendant’s dwelling, and the defendant is not obligated to retreat in or from the defendant’s place of work, unless the defendant was the initial aggressor.

A person who is justified in using force to assist a public officer in performing the officer’s duties; or in making an arrest; or in preventing an escape, is not required to stop assisting the officer in the face of resistance or threatened resistance.

If, after considering all the evidence tending to support this defense, you find that the evidence raises a reasonable doubt in your mind about the defendant’s guilt, you must find the defendant not guilty of the crime.  You must consider evidence of this defense along with all the other evidence in determining whether the State has satisfied its burden of proving the defendant’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.

By | 2013-01-14T14:28:47+00:00 January 14th, 2013|Comments Off on DE 5.11. JUSTIFICATION – USE OF FORCE IN SELF-PROTECTION