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Lawyer and Gun Activist
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We had some discussion of this in the Armaud Arbery thread, but this news item about repealing or rewriting the Citizens Arrest law deserves its own thread.
I searched for that thread and did not find it; if it's out here somewhere, moderators please merge this into the older one.

https://www.ajc.com/politics/kemp-r...tizens-arrest-law/WRG5FRXPWRC37KDYM2VLA4QTMY/

Quote:
The governor's plan would replace the roughly 150-year-old statute with a new version that includes protections for law enforcement officers and private businesses to detain lawbreakers, according to a senior official, while also addressing concerns from critics who say it's systemically abused to disproportionately target Black Georgians.

Another Quote:

Current state law allows any Georgian who believes he has witnessed a crime to arrest the suspected offender if the crime "is committed in his presence or within his immediate knowledge." If the crime is a felony and the person suspected of committing it is trying to flee, Georgians are allowed to arrest that person "upon reasonable and probable grounds of suspicion."

***************

The actual Code section at issue is O.C.G.A. 17-4- 60.
 

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HB 45
Criminal procedure; arrest by private persons; repeal article; make conforming changes
https://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/58837

Sponsors

No.Number in list
Name District
1. Gilliard, Carl 162nd
2. Smyre, Calvin 135th

Committees

House Committee:
N/A

Senate Committee:
N/A

First Reader Summary
A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Article 4 of Chapter 4 of Title 17 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to arrest by private persons, so as to repeal the article in its entirety; to amend Titles 17, 35, and 43 of the Official Code of Georgia Annotated, relating to criminal procedure, law enforcement officers and agencies, and professions and businesses, respectively, so as to make conforming changes; to provide for related matters; to provide for an effective date and applicability; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

Status History

Date Status
12/16/2020 House Prefiled
 

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Sledgehammer
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This is a horrible idea as a matter of public policy.

On the political front, though, I see this bill, although prefiled, has never been read nor assigned to committee. It appears to be DOA.
 

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Liver Abuser
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Direct result of the Ahmed Arbery shooting.

Never mind that the three idiots involved violated every section of that law as well as committing additional felonies in the process.

Hopefully DOA.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
In 2000, the state of South Carolina's courts announced that the "citizens arrest" law only applied to the kinds of cases that were a perfect fit with what the legislature wrote in codifying what had been a very broad common-law right. The Court said that any crime or offense, or any circumstances, that would have been the basis for a valid citizens arrest at common law (the law we inherited from England, indeed based on all of Western Civilization, and also U.S. and South Carolina caselaw as developed in the 18th and 19th centuries)...

... would no longer be the valid basis for a citizens arrest in SC, after the legislature specifically listed some examples of when it's OK for citizens to do such arrests.

Last year, in 2020, the legislature followed-up on this by repealing the part of "impersonating a police officer" statute that had acknowledged an exception for LAWFUL and proper citizens' arrests done in compliance with SC's codes.

So, this one-two punch from the legislature and the courts has really gutted the citizens arrest law in that state. Who would take the risk of invoking that law now, in this political climate?
 

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You see a man in a store stalking a little kid and then punches the little kid in the face repeatedly, breaking bones, knocking out teeth and rending the kid bleeding and unconscious with obviously serious injuries.

The man is finished before you can get to him.

He turns to leave.

You are on a perfect line to intercept him and can. But you are not particularly fast. He has no idea you are thinking about grabbing him and taking him down.

With the proposed changes, can you grab him, take him down, and hold him for the police?

There is the option of following at a distance with a cell phone to 911, but we already established that you are not a fast walker, maybe you really can't run beyond a jog. This guy is younger and much lighter and is wearing running shoes.

Is it just too bad, so sad, nobody can arrest but an actual police officer?
 

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Is it just too bad, so sad, nobody can arrest but an actual police officer?
Would you not be justified in threatening to use or using deadly force to stop the guy under OCGA 16-3-21(a)? The guy did commit a forcible felony after all.
 

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Sledgehammer
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Would you not be justified in threatening to use or using deadly force to stop the guy under OCGA 16-3-21(a)? The guy did commit a forcible felony after all.
Under the hypothetical provided, before you use or threaten force, the attack has subsided. There no longer is a crime being committed to stop.
 

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Under the hypothetical provided, before you use or threaten force, the attack has subsided. There no longer is a crime being committed to stop.
Understood but would you not reasonably consider that perhaps this guy is going to repeat himself with the next child (or an adult) he runs into?
 
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Lawyer and Gun Activist
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
That's too speculative, based only on the attack you saw against only one victim. He might've had a particular beef with that victim, or a reason to target that one kid which would not apply to any other kids he may encounter out on the street next.
 

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Understood but would you not reasonably consider that perhaps this guy is going to repeat himself with the next child (or an adult) he runs into?
Nope. And what you wrote is exactly why this state policy change is such a bad idea (or "horrible idea" as jrm wrote in post #3.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 · (Edited)
According To the AJC article online today, Kemp said that this law was too easily abused ...now he didn't say "by racist white people" but he cited various black activist groups and social justice warriors who are complaining about how Black people are mistreated by whites.

So basically Brian Kemp's position is you white people of GA can't be trusted to help suppress crime that you personally witness --that has to be left for law enforcement officers.
(Who will be sent into political reeducation camps to have "cultural sensitivity" training pounded into their heads.)
 

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and add this one to the list.....

HB 479 - Criminal procedure; revise certain arrest powers; provisions
https://www.legis.ga.gov/legislation/59726
Sponsors
No.Number in list Name District
1. Reeves, Bert 34th
2. Hogan, Don 179th
3. Gilliard, Carl 162nd
4. Frazier, Gloria 126th
5. DeLoach, Buddy 167th
6. Boddie, William 62nd

Committees

House Committee:
N/A
Senate Committee:
N/A

First Reader Summary
A BILL to be entitled an Act to amend Title 17 of the O.C.G.A., relating to criminal procedure, so as to revise certain arrest powers; to provide for arrests by a law enforcement officer outside of the jurisdiction of his or her employing law enforcement agency under certain circumstances; to revise the grounds for arrest by a private person; to repeal in its entirety Article 4 of Chapter 4, relating to arrest by private persons; to amend Article 5 of Chapter 2 of Title 35 of the O.C.G.A., relating to motor carrier compliance division; to amend Chapter 38 of Title 43 of the O.C.G.A., relating to operators of private detective businesses and private security businesses; to amend Article 4 of Chapter 7 of Title 51 of the O.C.G.A., relating to detention or arrest on suspicion of shoplifting or film piracy; to provide for related matters; to provide for an effective date and applicability; to repeal conflicting laws; and for other purposes.

Status History

Date Status
02/16/2021 House Hopper
 

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Cynical Geoff speaking here. Why would anyone not covered by immunity ever use force on another not in immediate self-defense? Too much liability. Too many folks willing to scream "racist" regardless of the facts. Too many people eager to ruin another person personally and professionally just for spits and giggles. Nope, SEP. (Somebody Else's Problem). Getting beat up? Sucks to be you. Shoulda armed yourself. I carry to protect myself and my family, not you and certainly not a random stranger. I wish I didn't have to adopt this stance, but I really have no other choice.
Convince me I am wrong, please.
 

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