Can I hold intruder/vandal at gunpoint?

Discussion in 'Firearm Related' started by SimsDelt, Mar 27, 2012.

  1. SimsDelt

    SimsDelt New Member

    I am the VP of our Home Owners Association. Over the past few weeks we have had a lot of break-ins and lots of vandalization (is that a word) of all our lights/pool/restrooms/etc. It is going to cost us over 4,000 to fix all this. We have 4 police reports over 3 weeks. I and another board member (both have Georgia Fire Arms Licenses) were going to sit in our club house this weekend and wait for them to break in again (did I mention it has been every weekend for a month and the police won't come sit up there). If they did happen to break in again and try to vandalize our property again am I within my rights to hold the intruders at gunpoint until the police arrive? Also I am expecting that the vandals will be kids... just wondering what your interpretation of this situation would be. We cannot keep having our property vandalized with no one being caught.
  2. mountainpass

    mountainpass Under Scrutiny

    Dude at this point I would suggest a live camera feed and a cell phone. If you have any doubts go look up Obama's boy...if he had one.

  3. gunsmoker

    gunsmoker Lawyer and Gun Activist

    Pointing a gun at a person implies that you are about to shoot them.
    Would you be able to legally shoot them for vandalism?
    Would you be able to legally shoot them for fleeing from such a crime rather than submitting to your citizen's arrest?
    NO, and NO.

    So if you can't legally use your gun in such a situation, can you "bluff" them and threaten them with death by gunfire by brandishing the gun? No. You could be charged with "aggravated assault" which is a major felony.

    (Now many citizens would assume that any time you can arrest somebody you can do it at gunpoint, like cops do, but that's technically not true. You might get off on the sympathy of your fellow citizen-jurors, but it's really risky).
  4. commodore_dude

    commodore_dude Active Member

    Holy crap, seriously? Have you not been watching the news?
  5. CoffeeMate

    CoffeeMate Junior Butt Warmer

    Too many cop shows. :shakehead:
  6. Puffyfish

    Puffyfish New Member

    Inside your house, yes as you mentioned break in's. Outside that's a whole new ball game full of do's and dont's.
  7. kestak

    kestak New Member

    Will the quote more exact "Inside the border of your land" instead of inside your house?

    If someone breaks into my house while I am there, I am sure he won't hesitate to hurt me or my family. He would have dealt already with 400 pounds of dogs. That means he'll be most probably armed and I'll be scared like sh*t for my family and my safety.

    If someone is on my land and doing "vandalism", that means he dealt with 400 pounds of dogs. That means he'll be most probably armed and I'll be scared like sh*t for my family and my safety. My property is fenced on left and right sides I have a lake in my backyard and I can't swim :roll: . My house walls are stucco and any bullet can go through.

    Draw your conclusions.
  8. SimsDelt

    SimsDelt New Member

    This is why I am frustrated. I am told not to hold them at gun point (was going to use an unloaded shotgun) and to just use video cameras, which will do nothing more than me getting them on camera doing what I already know they are doingm . I guess I could tackle them and hold them down till cops got there.... but is that not assault ? At what point does vandalism and breaking and entering become a felony? At which you can by GA law hold someone at gunpoint during the commission of a felony. Is there a dollar amount that makes it a felony? All serious questions.

    P.s. I always carry a loaded pistol on me. Period

    Sent from my Galaxy Nexus using Tapatalk
  9. seajay

    seajay NRA Certified Instructor

    No... IF you are stopping a crime in progress. You have to wait until they actually do something though. You can't jump them beforehand and say you "think" they were going to.
  10. robfromga

    robfromga New Member

    Beat the brakes off them. They are, most likely unarmed punks. If you don't think you can win the fist fight, get some cameras.
  11. ChipM

    ChipM Active Member

    You are frustrated that you cannot use deadly force to prevent a kid from vandalizing your pool? Seriously?

    At the point at which, if you do not use deadly force to defend against it, they will kill, seriously injure, rape, or kidnap you or another person. This is the only time. Not to teach them a lesson, not to protect property, not because you are frustrated.
    Barney Fife carried an UNLOADED gun. I recommend you consider the same until you have obtained some good, professional firearms and legal instruction.
  12. Tiggereast

    Tiggereast Active Member

    In my neighborhood, we hire off-duty Police to patrol. In a case like this I would reccommend you contact the local Police and hire a Police Officer for the times you need. Let the Police handle Police matters, you (homeowners) pay the bill, JMO. Stay safe.
  13. AirCrew

    AirCrew New Member

    Remote camera, call the police and possibly follow them home or get tag numbers if the LEO does not get there in time. I caught a couple kids in the act once and I promise you, they were more scared of their father than they were any LEO. Their father had them remove the spray painting they had done and maintain the Ladies yard for the summer.
  14. HydroAuto

    HydroAuto GPDO Commonlaw Spouse

    IIRC, there was also an incident in the news not too long ago of some business owners that laid in wait for repeat vandals/thieves on their business property. It didn't end well for the vandals OR the owners. I believe the owners were faulted for laying in wait which was somehow equivocated to entrapment of some sort.
  15. Docindahouze

    Docindahouze Member

    It's probably the disgruntled home owners who don't like the HOA. :shattered:
  16. ookoshi

    ookoshi Moderator

    You're asking the wrong questions.

    First, whether it's a felony or not is irrelevant. There are lots of non-violent crimes that are felonies. You can't shoot people committing those crimes if you catch them.

    Second, there's no difference between "hold at gunpoint" or "shooting them in the face", both constitute deadly force. So, to answer your question, you can "hold someone at gunpoint" in the same instances where you could've legally shot them. If you stop thinking of "hold at gunpoint" as something that's less serious, the answers should be obvious. Can you shoot someone for spray painting something? No. Then you can't hold them at gunpoint either. Simple as that.

    Third, what's the difference between tackling someone and shooting them? One is force, the other is deadly force. The self-defense statutes allow you to use "force" to protect property, but not "deadly force". That's why you can tackle someone who is vandalizing your property, but you cannot hold them at gun point.
  17. Verbal101

    Verbal101 Active Member

    What about this:

    You're open carrying.
    You catch someone in the act of vandalizing the property.
    You tell them to stay put, the police have been called.
    You don't draw, you don't even touch your gun, but they can see it.
    If they run, you don't pursue. You file a police report, this time with a good description, maybe a tag number.
    If they don't run, the police arrive, you've "held" them, but not at gun point.

    Did you do anything wrong?
  18. CoffeeMate

    CoffeeMate Junior Butt Warmer

    I'd say no.
  19. CoffeeMate

    CoffeeMate Junior Butt Warmer

  20. CoffeeMate

    CoffeeMate Junior Butt Warmer

    Loaded or unloaded is irrelevant. There is no mitigating "'s okay because it was unloaded..." in Georgia.

    The point isn't for YOU to know what they are doing. The point is to gather evidence so that OTHERS know WHO is doing it.

    There you go. No, it would not be assault under those circumstances.

    The use of deadly force statute refers to "...the commission of a forcible felony..." Forcible felonies are defined as things such as kidnapping, armed robbery, attempt to murder, etc. Note the pattern. It isn't felonies in general. It's felonies involving a threat to life or great bodily harm.

    Burglary of a domicile, breaking into a home in a tumultuous manner, a home invasion, etc carries with it an implied threat to persons. Vandalism doesn't.