Deadly Force

Deadly force, as defined by the United States Armed Forces, is the force which a person uses, causing—or that a person knows, or should know, would create a substantial risk of causing—death or serious bodily harm. In most jurisdictions, the use of deadly force is justified only under conditions of extreme necessity as a last resort, when all lesser means have failed or cannot reasonably be employed.

Firearms, bladed weapons, explosives, and vehicles are among those weapons the use of which is considered deadly force. The use of non-weapons in an aggressive manner, such as a baseball bat or tire iron, may also be considered deadly force.

"Use of deadly force" is often granted to police forces when the person or persons in question are believed to be an immediate danger to people around them. For example, an armed man in a shopping mall shooting at civilians without regard to the safety of anyone around him, and refusing or being unwilling to negotiate, would warrant usage of deadly force, as a means to prevent further danger to the community. The use of deadly force is also authorized when a person poses a significant threat to a law enforcement officer, usually when the officer is at risk of serious bodily injury or death. In the United States this is governed by Tennessee v. Garner, which said that "deadly force...may not be used unless necessary to prevent the escape and the officer has probable cause to believe that the suspect poses a significant threat of death or serious physical injury to the officer or others." This case established the Fleeing felon rule exception to the use of deadly force. Under this exception, if a police officer establishes probable cause that an individual escaping poses a serious threat of death or significant harm to the officer or others, the officer can use deadly force. In Australia, it has recently been proposed that police officers should have this power when a person might in the future pose a threat to others (see Australian Anti-Terrorism Act 2005).

Most police agencies establish a use of force continuum and list deadly force as a force of last resort. With this model, agencies try to control excessive use of force.

In general, all armed bodies, be they the police or military or some offshoot thereof, have the ability to issue authorization for the usage of such force.

In the United States, a civilian may legally use deadly force when it is considered justifiable homicide, that is to say when the civilian feels that their own life, the lives of their family, or those around them are in legitimate and imminent danger. However, self-defense resulting in usage of deadly force by a civilian or civilians against an individual or individuals is often subject to examination by a court if it is unclear whether it was necessary at the point of the offense, and whether any further action on the part of the law needs to be taken.

Read more about Deadly Force:  Legal Opinions

Other articles related to "force, deadly force":

Police Accountability - Use of Force
... See also Police brutality Use of force by police against civilians may involve firearms, as well as other means ... no written policies or review procedures regarding use of force by law enforcement in the United States ... a new policy that confined discretion in use of force to situations only where the officer's own life, or that of other people are in danger ...
Right Of Self-defense In Maryland - The Use of Deadly Force in Self-Defense
... follow common law principles on the issue of when one may use deadly force in self-defense ... the following criteria are satisfied (4) The force used must have not been unreasonable and excessive, that is, the force must not have been more ... In addition, when one is in one's home, one may use deadly force against an attacker if deadly force is necessary to prevent the attacker from committing a felony that involves the use of force, violence, or ...
Scott V. Harris
... majority claimed it to be, and that a jury should determine if deadly force was justified ... to over a thousand subjects and then asking them whether they thought the use of deadly force was reasonable ... disagreement over the reasonableness of the use of deadly force was reported in the Harvard Law Review ...
A Case Of Deadly Force
... A Case of Deadly Force is an American made-for-tv drama film that was released on April 9, 1986 ... It was adapted from the book "Deadly Force" by Lawrence O'Donnell ...
Deadly Force - Legal Opinions
... Use of deadly force in relation to motor vehicles In Scott v ... Traditionally, intentional contact between vehicles has been characterized as unlawful deadly force, though some U.S ... fatalities are infrequent, and therefore unlawful deadly force should not be presumed to be the level of force applied in such incidents however, the Adams case was subsequently called into question by Harris v ...

Famous quotes containing the words force and/or deadly:

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