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How can you use self-defense in your criminal case?

Posted on in Criminal Defense

When individuals in Wisconsin and elsewhere are placed in danger, they will likely react to the matter in a certain way. Whether it is the situation, a person or a weapon that ignites these dangers, people may take steps to protect themselves. It is an accepted principle that a person may take certain steps in self-defense.

How can you use self-defense as a criminal defense? Self-defense is considered to be a right, and it is an action taken by an individual to prevent suffering force or violence against their person by taking a sufficient level of counteracting forces or even violence. And while it might seem simple and clear on its face, self-defense raises many questions when it is applied in a given situation.

Because it might not be apparent what an appropriate level of force is in the situation, this could lead Wisconsin residents to question if a person lawfully protected themselves. Additionally, there is the question of whether the individual provoked the attack that they later used self-defense in. Other questions that need to be answered are whether or not the victim had the duty to retreat from the violence before using self-defense, or if the victim's apprehension of the threat is genuine and reasonable.

Thus, if authorities do not believe at the time of the incident that there was an imminent threat and the proper level of force was not used in the matter, a person could face criminal charges. This does not mean that the individual will be stuck with an assault or battery charge without any defense options. In fact, the accused could still use self-defense as their criminal defense strategy. This may require additional investigation, witness accounts and even experts. However, this could help prove the level of threat that led to the accused's actions.

Those facing criminal charges due to self-defense actions should be aware that they have options available. Self-defense can still be a viable option, and defendants could take steps to reduce or dismiss charges, helping them avoid penalties.

Source: Findlaw.com, " Self-Defense Overview," accessed May 21, 2017

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