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Is assault lawful when protecting someone?

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posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 06:52 AM
For want of a better forum category, I've posted this here, perhaps the mods could move it to a more ideal place tho

I've just read an article on the BBC website, debating the morality of intervening in fights. It certainly makes you think about what is right and wrong, and how society is changing.

I can think of at least eight seperate occasions where I've helped to defend a complete stranger from one or more assaulters, and I've never got into trouble for it. On two occasions I've been thanked by the police for helping them to apprehend the assaulters. Mostly I've just used reasonable force - I've grabbed them around the neck or waist and dragged them to the ground, restraining them until the police arrived. On other occasions I've piled in and started punching people.

The question is, where does defending other people end, and assaulting the assaulter yourself start? (If that makes sense). Defending your personal property and family is one thing, but what about a total stranger in the street? Personally, I can't walk past and let a guy get beaten senseless by a group of people without doing something about it. Its just not in my nature.

But on the other hand, what about your own personal safety? Some of you may be familiar with this story, back in 1995 when a teacher was stabbed to death trying to defend a pupil from a gang.

So, what are everyones' thoughts on this matter, and do you have any personal stories to share?

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 07:47 AM
I'd step in and stop the most agressive of the two, or protect the one being assualted if it's a gang thing. I don't see how you could live with yourself if you just walked by someone being bashed.

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 08:13 AM
When you have to ask questions like these, its time to find a new country to live in.


Its just like the physicians in America who stop at an accident to help an injured driver and end up getting sued.


posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 08:26 AM
when I was growing up, things were different you could get away with more than you can now, people have gotten sue happy and the least little altercation can now result in a costly lawsuit that can leave you broke and suffering.

People just dont want to get involved these days because it could end up costing you dearly, I remember once when I was younger, I use to go out to the clubs alot , and one night I came across a guy beatng the crap out of a girl I assumed she was his girlfriend I'm really not sure, I had been drinking as was my custom in those days, an being under the infulence of alcohol I commenced to dish out to this guy some of the same punishment he had been giving the girl, after leaving the guy motionless on the ground I began to walk toward the door of the club with my friends all laughing and joking about the incident, when out of the still night air a gunshot rang out, I had never had a gun fired at me before, and although the guy missed after several shots, he fled in his vehicle and was apprehended a short time later.

I guess the thing I would say concerning this subject is this, when you step over the line and involve yourself in violence happening in your presence, realize that you could escalate the situation into something more serious than it started out to be.

people these days seem more willing to resort to gunplay than in times past, the event I just related happend more than twenty years ago and was unheard of where I lived at the time, now people get shot and killd there all of the time.

would I do it again?? probably, but I no longer drink, so I dont go in the places where such things happen so readily, but right is right, I could not stand by while a person gets the stuffing beat out of them in frount of my very eyes.

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 09:04 AM
reply to post by DragonsDomain

The difference between defending another person and assaulting another person = witnesses

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 09:26 AM
the_sentinel - i remember being in a place where something like that happened. some guy smacked is girlfriend in plain sight and about 5 other guys that saw it happen proceeded to beat the hell out of him. good show and i don't think anyone even bothered to call the cops. i don't condone violence, but protection of family, women, and children in general is paramount IMO.

if it was just a random fight between some guy vs some other guy i would have to size it up on a case by case basis. how much threat would there be to me if i intervened, etc.

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 09:44 AM
I don't know about lawful, but it's moral. Just use the minimum amount of force necessary. Threw a shoe at a guy's head to stop a robbery--the guy behind him pounced on him at the checkout! When I was growing up, you took your life in your hands if you tried to rob a store! I didn't hurt the guy, just distracted him so the guy behind himcould pounce.

posted on Aug, 21 2007 @ 09:45 AM
reply to post by kosmicjack

You said it!

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