KYLE’S LAW: Stopping Politically Motivated Prosecutions of Self-Defense

Hey folks, I’m Attorney Andrew Branca, for Law of Self Defense, and I’d like to take just a moment to talk with you about Kyle’s Law, our proposed law for stopping politically motivated prosecutions of self-defense.

Too often, rogue prosecutors bring felony criminal charges against people who were clearly doing nothing more than defending themselves, their families, or others from violent criminal attack.

We’ve seen this happen in the George Zimmerman trial in Florida a decade ago, in the Kyle Rittenhouse trial just completed in Kenosha WI, and in plenty of cases in between.

These are cases where there is little or no evidence inconsistent with self-defense, such that there can no good-faith reason for a prosecutor to drag that defender to trial.  The only motivation of the prosecutor is personal aggrandizement and political capital.

The real problem here is that these trials are a win-win for these rogue, politically motivated prosecutors.  If the trial ends in a conviction, they won the legal case.

Even if the trial ends in an acquittal, however, as the George Zimmerman and Kyle Rittenhouse trials did, the prosecutor still wins, in the form of political capital and esteem from their own social and political community.  They at least “fought the good fight” as their team sees it.

With a win either way there exists zero disincentives for prosecutors to bring felony charges even in self-defense cases where the evidence and law overwhelmingly favor the defendant, and an actual conviction is all but impossible.

The consequences for the clearly innocent defender, however, are catastrophic no matter how strong his case of self-defense. For the lawful defender who finds himself the target of a rogue, politically motivated prosecutor, it’s a lose-lose.

Sure, the defender with the evidence and law on his side will probably win an acquittal–but at what cost?  Especially with the mainstream media having demonized the defender for a year or more prior to the trial–as a murderer, a racist, a white supremacist.

An acquittal after the trial does not make up for the loss of job, marriage, home, business, reputation, educational opportunities, and emotional stability. Indeed, many such acquitted defenders find it largely impossible to ever live a normal life again.

It’s time to change this equation.  It’s time to compel prosecutors to have skin in the game, to have something to lose if they bring a laughably weak, yet horribly destructive, felony prosecution in a case of self-defense.  And it’s time to provide a path for the wrongfully prosecuted defender to get compensation for his monetary, reputational, and emotional damages.

Kyle’s Law is my proposal to accomplish exactly that.   This statutory proposal targets laughably weak prosecutions of self-defense cases, prosecutions so weak they can only be politically motivated, and without any real prospect of conviction.

What do I mean by “laughably weak” in a more objective sense?  Well, at trial a prosecutor knows he will bear the burden to disprove self-defense beyond any reasonable doubt.  Let’s imagine that means he must disprove self-defense by 90% of the evidence.  If the defendant is acquitted, that means the prosecutor fell short of that 90% threshold.

If they fall short of that threshold by a small amount, say 75%, that still looks like a reasonable self-defense prosecution to my lawyer’s eye.  Fair enough.

But what if the prosecutor at trial can’t even disprove self-defense by a mere 50%?  Not even by that mere majority of the evidence?  That’s not a little bit short of beyond a reasonable doubt, that’s enormously short.  To my eye that looks like a self-defense prosecution brought in the full knowledge that it lacks anything close to the legal merit needed for a conviction–in other words, like a prosecution brought for political purposes despite its obvious lack of legal merit.

What I propose is that in every self-defense case the jury instruction on self-defense includes a special question to the jury–if you the jury are acquitting this defendant on the grounds of self-defense, do you also find that the prosecution failed to disprove self-defense by a majority of the evidence?

If the jury agrees the prosecution failed to meet even this very low threshold, the defendant is immediately entitled to compensation for any losses resulting from this unfounded prosecution.

And that compensation shall be made both by the state generally and by the prosecutor personally.

First, the state generally:  A self-defense defendant who qualifies under Kyle’s Law would be entitled to monetary compensation from the state for legal expenses, lost wages, and all other economic costs associated with the unjust prosecution. (Washington state already has a statute that does precisely this, §9A.16.110, but it is the only state that does. This needs to expand to every state.)

Second, the prosecutor personally: A self-defense defendant who qualifies under Kyle’s Law would be entitled to monetary compensation from the prosecutor personally for mental distress, emotional pain & suffering, lost economic/ business/educational opportunities, reputational damage, and so forth, plus any legal costs incurred to secure this compensation—and that means the suffering of both the defendant himself AND his immediate family. (No state currently has such a provision of law.)

Further, if the State seeks to reimburse the prosecutor for this damage award, that reimbursement also becomes the property of the self-defense defendant.

Only by holding the state generally and the prosecutor personally both responsible for such cases of unjust persecution of self-defense cases can we keep these victims of violent attack from also becoming victims of an assaultive justice system.

At present, we are simply trying to raise awareness and build a community around this Kyle’s Law project—we are not seeking any funds or financing in any form from anyone, at least not yet.

If you’d like to join the still informal Kyle’s Law community, without any cost or obligation at all, and simply for the purposes of being kept informed of our progress as we develop this legislative concept, I encourage you to visit

Thanks for your consideration of our Kyle’s Law concept, and I look forward to having you join our modest, but rapidly growing, community focused on the legal defense of self-defense itself.


Attorney Andrew F. Branca
Law of Self Defense LLC


24 thoughts on “KYLE’S LAW: Stopping Politically Motivated Prosecutions of Self-Defense”

  1. Andrew,

    You deserve a great deal of thanks for even proposing this law. If you get it actually on the statute books, every American will owe you a tremendous debt of gratitude. Right now, even if you are found by a jury to be pure as the driven snow of some politically-driven accusation, you still lose badly in money, reputation, time, relationships, additional stress, etc. The prosecution really has a “Heads I Win, Tails You Lose” coin, and lots of the Soros-bought ones wield it gleefully against their hated and despised political opponents.

    That MUST stop. This abuse of the prosecuting power has to stop because, if it doesn’t, I can easily see people starting to take the law into their own hands and assassinating the prosecutors.

  2. My last comment was on this subject. I do believe if the tax payers foot the bill for their misconduct they will not change. Only personal consequences will make a difference. Too bad Soros can’t be charged for the violence he has paid for.

    1. I would agree with the personal liability thing, but you can’t hold a prosecutor liable for prosecuting a case where he had probable cause to believe a crime was committed and probable cause to believe he could prove it beyond a resonable doubt. What we need is for probable cause hearings or grandjury hearings to be on the record and governed by the same due process requirements as a criminal trial. but with a lower standard of burden of persuasion (preponderance of the evidence, 51%) and monetary damages to the defendant for the costs of mounting a defense, and punitive damages awarded to the defendant for a malcious prosecution if there is a finding that the prosecution did not even have reasonable and probable cause for accusing the defendant in the first place. Cities, counties, and states will put rules for prosecution in place real quick when they start having to pay damages out of their own operating budgets.

      1. Attorney Andrew Branca

        Is it REASONABLE “probable cause to believe he could prove it beyond a resonable doubt” when at trial he can’t even prove it by a mere preponderance?

        I suggest not.

        And I suggest an UNREASONABLE probable cause ought be actionable against the prosecutor personally, as falling actionably outside the competent exercise of his prosecutorial authority.

  3. Sounds good to me.

    Blackstone said the historic English law used to punish the prosecutor, the witnesses, and the judge if a man was wrongfully convicted. Convicted murders were executed on the third day after the jury verdict and if turned out on appeal that the defendant had been falsely convicted the prosecutor and the witnesses were hung.

  4. Andrew,
    Thanks for your great coverage, and I loved seeing you on Rekieta and the other lawtube channels! It’s great to see different people I’ve been following getting together.
    I’m all for Kyle’s Law, but won’t the supreme court somehow just find that it violates their invented and creeping absolute immunity? It is quite clever, though, I have to admit. I’m straining to think exactly how they would do it since it’s not a question of civil damages but presumably a kind of fine for the prosecutor. Would it be a civil administrative fine? It seems like a criminal fine would require more in the way of due process than what you describe.
    Anyway, I’m by no means a lawyer, so take all that with a grain of salt, but I hope that helps open some more aspects of this to your consideration while planning.
    Thanks again,

  5. I agree with Kyle’s law. Not just from the State, but also from the budget of the District Attorneys Department so the pressure to be responsable is applied to the entire department.
    I find that no one in the news is being truthful. Everyone seems to ignore the elephant in the room. The democratic party enlisted the help of the black community to win the election against Donald Trump. They played the race card and it worked. The democratic party conspired with the radicalized black community, probably with money from China to destabilize the race relations, Antifa and BLM to riot and burn to win an election. Some blacks felt that racial injustice of the past has still not been justly dealt with. Since Trump treated the Media, they were radicalized also. Since the democratic party was approving and winking at the protest, mob, burning and looting in Kenosha, when Kyle Rittenhouse showed up to protect property from rioters he became the enemy of the left leaning Democratic Party and their army of black radicals. I hope he goes after Joe Biden and the Media for libel. But as long as the Democratic party is in power, there will probably not be much room for prosecutor reform, and with people like Soros, it will probably only get worse. What the jury did in Kenosha should probably be looked as nothing short of a miracle. With the media hunting down the jury members by following the bus that picked them up at the residence, we should probably all pray for them.

  6. Andrew I am wondering if Kyle’s Law can be created to include “Immunity from Prosecution” in the first place, especially for states that don’t already allow?
    Or draft Kyle’s Law in such a way as to serve as the penalty clause of the same?

  7. Andrew, first off thank you for your coverage. It was excellent. Second, I am astounded at the amount of malfeasance by the prosecution in a case which was under a microscope. How much malfeasance is there when the prosecution isn’t on TV?

    Along those lines, since a prosecution is supposed to prove a case beyond a reasonable doubt, is a prosecution allowed to dramatically change their theory of the case mid-trial? They opened the trial saying that they were going to prove that Kyle chased Rosenbaum? Along the way that theory just faded away and was replaced with another.

    Finally, what happens with the motions to dismiss? Are they simply mooted and the malfeasance of the video is swept under the carpet?

  8. guilty as charged

    Time to dust off the motorcycle and decompress. Excellent, extremely accurate, balanced coverage. You’re very good at what you do. Your work is very stressful and the emotional part takes it’s toll. Get some rest.

  9. A lot of lawyers and law professors are making the statement that “you can’t bring a gun to a skateboard fight.” They seem to miss the point that there is no evidence that Kyle Rittenhouse brought a gun to a skateboard fight. The evidence in this case showed that Anthony Huber brought a skateboard to a gun fight. The law gives the non-aggressor in a use of force situation his choice or weapons.

  10. There needs to be a mechanism for dealing with prosecutorial misconduct. Lives are destroyed by malignant, politicized prosecutors that never involve going to trial, the process is the penalty. Don’t know how to do it but there need to be severe penalties for the type of behavior exhibited in the Rittenhouse trial and for the many more cases that never get before a jury.

  11. You and Kurt Slichter both wrote very good and very similar laws on this subject sir. His is in an article on I would invite you to take a look at it. You both have wide exposure in your own way to the public. Both of you gentlemen working together from different parts of the country would only help in getting this passed by more state legislatures. Of course that would most likely happen in red states like Virginia where I live just did. The states I call Democratic People’s Socialist Republics like New York, Maryland, Massachusetts and Kalifornia where this kind of law is most needed, filled with Soros bought DA’s and activist Judges, would not pass a law like this.

    Looking forwards to reading your book when I get it. Thank you for all your work in defending our Constitutional rights.

    1. Attorney Andrew Branca

      Kurt and I have known each other personally for perhaps a decade, and he was kind enough to ask me for feedback on his recent article before it published.

  12. As a firearms and self defense instructor I will be following this closely. Something like this has been sorely needed years ago. I’ll be happy to help in any way needed. first by spreading the word. Second by presenting this to my students during their instruction.

  13. Can this not be accomplished with a self defense preliminary hearing in which, if the prosecution cannot disprove self defense by a preponderance of the evidence, the charges are dismissed with prejudice and the prosecutor’s office, specifically the part of their budget that covers compensation, is required to reimburse the defendant’s expenses as you described them?

  14. I think you need to expand the beyond self defense. This should be applicable to all charges. Maybe allow juries to rule “actual innocence” as the requirement to invoke the penalty.

  15. I fully support this concept. As a law abiding citizen, if; God forbid, I should need to use my firearm in self defense, I fear an over zealous prosecutor with the full weight and resources if the STATE would destroy my life. Thank you for starting this movement.

Leave a Comment