Indiana Judges Association (IJA) (2017)


Instruction No. 10.0600. Use of Force to Protect an Aircraft.

I.C. 35-41-3-2(f) and (h).

It is an issue whether the Defendant acted in defense of an aircraft in flight.

A person may use reasonable force, including deadly force, against another person, and does not have a duty to retreat, if the person reasonably believes that the force is necessary to prevent or stop the other person from [hijacking] [attempting to hijack] [otherwise seizing or attempting to seize unlawful control of] an aircraft in flight.

For purposes of this subsection, an aircraft is considered to be in flight while the aircraft is:

on the ground in Indiana:

after the door of the aircraft are closed for takeoff; and

until the aircraft takes off;

in the airspace above Indiana;

on the ground in Indiana:

after the aircraft lands; and

before the doors of the aircraft are opened after landing.

[However, a person may not use force if:
(the person is committing or is escaping after the commission of a crime (or)

(the person provokes unlawful action by another person with intent to cause bodily injury to that person)


(the person has willingly entered into combat with another person or is the initial aggressor unless the person withdraws from the encounter and communicates to the other person the intent to do so and the other person nevertheless continues or threatens to continue unlawful action).]

The State has the burden of proving beyond a reasonable doubt that the Defendant did not act in defense of an aircraft inflight.