V1447 – Self-Defence Bill 2019 Watch

Poll: Should this bill be passed into law?
As many as are of the opinion, aye (17)
36.96%
Of the contrary, no (19)
41.3%
Abstain (10)
21.74%
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Saracen's Fez
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V1447 – Self-Defence Bill 2019, TSR Libertarian Party
Self-Defence Bill 2019

A bill to allow citizens to use any level of force to defend themselves

BE IT ENACTED by The Queen's most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and consent of the Commons in this present Parliament assembled, in accordance with the provisions of the Parliament Acts 1911 and 1949, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

1. Level of Force
(1) An individual may use any level of force (with the exception of deadly force) to defend themselves, or another, if they honestly and reasonably believe they face, or another individual faces, an imminent threat of serious bodily harm, death or rape.

(i) This applies to any place, public or private.

(ii) This applies only where the individual in question has a legal right to be in that private or public place.

(2) An individual who is not engaged in the commission of a crime may use deadly force against another individual if the individual honestly and reasonably believes that the use of deadly force is necessary to prevent the imminent serious bodily harm, death or rape of themselves or another individual.

(i) This applies to any place, public or private.

(ii) This applies only where the individual in question has a legal right to be in that private or public place.

2. Short title, Commencement, Extent
(1) This act may be cited as the Self-Defence Act 2019
(2) This act comes into force upon Royal Assent
(3) This act extends to the UK


Notes
People should have the right use whatever force is necessary to protect themselves from danger. What this bill does is permit for a lawful excuse where defendants have used a level of force which currently may fall outside the scope of the current defence of self-defence, where the threat to them is serious.

The current law
At present, the defence of self-defence can be relied upon where the defendant has used force for the purposes of: defending themselves or another from an actual or imminent attack, the defence of property, the prevention of crime or to conduct a lawful arrest. The force used must be deemed necessary and reasonable in the circumstances.

However, this does not allow for defendants in situations such as the defendants in R v Clegg and R v Martin (Anthony Edwards) to rely on this defence.

Private Clegg had been on duty at a road checkpoint in Northern Ireland in the 1990s - before the peace settlement - when a car approached at high speed. He and a few other soldiers shot at it resulting in Clegg killing a female in the backseat. The people in the car were discovered to be joyriders, and Clegg could not rely on self-defence because the car had already passed him at the time of the shot which resulted in the death, meaning neither he nor anyone else was in danger by that time.

Tony Martin lived in a house in a remote area and which has previously been burgled. He was woken by someone entering his property. He fired into the darkness and killed a sixteen-year-old boy. His plea of self-defence was rejected as the boy was fleeing at the time and so the force was held to be unreasonable. There has long since been criticism of this outcome.

This bill would not necessarily affect the outcome of the Martin case (since it is doubtful he could prove he had reasonable belief in an imminent threat of serious bodily harm, death or rape), but the example serves to show how the ‘reasonable force’ requirement can leave defendants perhaps unfairly without lawful excuse. It is also to be noted that the law was changed by the coalition government in 2013 to allow any level of force not deemed ‘grossly disproportionate’ when it comes to defending people within a dwelling, though it has been noted that in practice this makes very little difference. This bill therefore attempts to make the difference that the 2013 Act failed to make, and additionally makes it useable in all the places where the person using the force has a legal right to be.

Current law:Partial defence to murder: loss of control

(1)Where a person (“D”) kills or is a party to the killing of another (“V”), D is not to be convicted of murder if—

(i) D's acts and omissions in doing or being a party to the killing resulted from D's loss of self-control,

(ii) The loss of self-control had a qualifying trigger, and

(iii) A person of D's sex and age, with a normal degree of tolerance and self-restraint and in the circumstances of D, might have reacted in the same or in a similar way to D.
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London090
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I vote aye. A very good motion which I fully support, people should have rights to protect themselves through self-defence how could you disagree with it?
Last edited by London090; 1 month ago
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username4391786
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(Original post by London090)
I vote aye. A very good motion which I fully support, people should have rights to protect themselves through self-defence how could you disagree with it?
People already have the right to do that. I know you think it's a crime, but it isn't. Vote nay.

This bill unecessarily meddles with the law with a false uber-libertarian motivation.
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Pugglet
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Nay
We already have a right to use self defence in a reasonable force.
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CatusStarbright
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(Original post by Pugglet)
Nay
We already have a right to use self defence in a reasonable force.
Correct, but this bill goes further.
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username4391786
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(Original post by CatusStarbright)
Correct, but this bill goes further.
You never struck me as someone to support a load of tosh.

How would this proposal benefit citizens? It prevents people from being able to cause death in self-defence and allows people to invoke it in situations where they shouldn't be able to (an example being a situation where the sensible option would be walking away instead of violently engaging with someone).
Last edited by username4391786; 1 month ago
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Saunders16
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(Original post by Concited)
You never struck me as someone to support a load of tosh.

How would this proposal benefit citizens? It prevents people from being able to cause death in self-defence and allows people to invoke it in situations where they shouldn't be able to (an example being a situation where the sensible option would be walking away instead of violently engaging with someone).
Before I vote, could you elaborate on how it would prevent people from being able to cause death in self-defence?

I am a strong advocate of people having the right to use whatever means to not only defend themselves but those around them, without changing current weapon laws, but I am very worried about the seemingly poor formatting.
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username4391786
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(Original post by Saunders16)
Before I vote, could you elaborate on how it would prevent people from being able to cause death in self-defence?

I am a strong advocate of people having the right to use whatever means to not only defend themselves but those around them, without changing current weapon laws, but I am very worried about the seemingly poor formatting.
Under this proposal, you can't invoke the defence since it isn't available if you've killed someone. Under current law, you can invoke the defence if you've killed someone so long as you've used the force reasonably.
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CatusStarbright
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(Original post by Concited)
You never struck me as someone to support a load of tosh.

How would this proposal benefit citizens? It prevents people from being able to cause death in self-defence and allows people to invoke it in situations where they shouldn't be able to (an example being a situation where the sensible option would be walking away instead of violently engaging with someone).
I'm not massively in favour of the bill, but it's party legislation and I appear to understand it more than the person taking ownership of the bill which unfortunately has left me somewhat front and centre in this debate.
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username4391786
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(Original post by CatusStarbright)
I'm not massively in favour of the bill, but it's party legislation and I appear to understand it more than the person taking ownership of the bill which unfortunately has left me somewhat front and centre in this debate.
I take it you'll vote against it then, which is what everyone else should be doing.
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cranbrook_aspie
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Nay. I would prefer that we took a more victim-centric approach to people who kill their attackers and not arrest people for stabbing armed burglars for example, but that's an attitude problem, and from a theoretical standpoint I believe the current law in relation to this issue is basically sufficient.
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Saunders16
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I have decided to abstain in the end; I have not been convinced that this achieves what I want correctly.
Last edited by Saunders16; 1 month ago
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Saracen's Fez
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The Ayes to the right: 17
The Noes to the left: 19
Abstentions: 10

The Noes have it! The Noes have it! Unlock!

Turnout: 93.88%
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