LA § 6:16 Defense of property—Persons lawfully inside a dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle.

LA § 6:16 Defense of property—Persons lawfully inside a dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle.

State: Louisiana

Louisiana Criminal Jury Instructions (2017)
§ 6:16 Defense of property—Persons lawfully inside a dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle

The use of force or violence upon the person of another is justifiable when committed for the purpose of preventing a forcible offense or trespass against property in a person’s lawful possession, if the force or violence used is reasonable and apparently necessary to prevent the offense or trespass.

A person lawfully inside a [dwelling][place of business][motor vehicle] [motor vehicle] is presumed to have held a reasonable belief that the use of force or violence is necessary to prevent an unlawful entry into [or compel the intruder to leave] the [dwelling][place of business][motor vehicle] when:

(1) the person knew or had reason to believe that an unlawful and forcible entry had occurred [or was in process] and;

(2) the person against whom the force or violence was used had made [or was in the process of making] an unlawful and forcible entry.

[A person who is not engaged in any unlawful activity and is in a place where he or she has a right to be has no duty to retreat before using force or violence for the purpose of preventing a forcible offense or trespass against property in his or her lawful possession. In such circumstances, a person may stand his or her ground and meet force with force. The possibility of retreat shall not be considered as a factor in determining whether or not the use of force or violence was reasonable and apparently necessary to prevent the forcible offense or trespass against the property.]

Thus, if you find:

(1) that the defendant engaged in the conduct charged as the offense for the purpose of preventing a forcible offense or trespass against property; and

(2) that the property was in the [defendant’s] lawful possession [of another]; and

(3) that the force or violence used by the defendant was apparently necessary to prevent the forcible offense or trespass against property; and

(4) that the defendant used reasonable force or violence to prevent the forcible offense or trespass; then you must find the defendant not guilty.

The authors recommend that the jury be instructed that the burden of proof remains on the state and that if the defense is raised, the state must prove that the defendant’s actions were not justified.

Updated: 7/12/2017

By | 2017-07-12T18:50:59+00:00 August 25th, 2015|Comments Off on LA § 6:16 Defense of property—Persons lawfully inside a dwelling, place of business, or motor vehicle.