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View Full Version : Man Claims Self-Defense, Charged With Murder


Bartholomew Roberts
February 27, 2012, 01:24 PM
Cortez Waller of Conway, Arkansas shot Chris Childress in front of his girlfriend and children outside of a police station in Conway in 2010 (http://www.fox16.com/news/local/story/Update-Shooting-outside-of-the-Conway-Police/XFca7AusD0y-mn0xJnDAzQ.cspx). The entire shooting was captured on video (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NoALOGnl76A&feature=related).

Based on several different news reports both after the shooting and during the trial, Waller had been sleeping with Childress's girlfriend and the mother of his 3 children. Childress had accused Waller of following the girlfriend and had threatened Waller on several occasions.

In the video, you can see Waller pulling up to the police station as Childress boxes him in with a truck and jumps out of the truck and comes running at Waller who has exited his vehicle. Waller shoots Childress multiple times with a .45. Waller then enters the police station and attempts to find someone at the lobby. After not finding anyone, he begins to leave and is arrested by two officers. He was subsequently charged with murder and claimed self-defense during his trial. After nine hours of deliberation, a jury acquitted Waller on self-defense grounds (http://www.fox16.com/news/local/story/Waller-found-not-guilty/dalJWO1BKk-HpcWLFtt1rg.cspx).

I thought this was worth talking about in Tactics and Training because we have both a video of the initial shooting and the news reports both immediately after the shooting and throughout the trial. As a result, we have a great deal of detail we don't normally have in these cases. I also thought it was a good case to discuss because either one of the men had the oppotunity to avoid this situation by using better tactics. If you are Waller, how do you avoid shooting a guy who may be an actual threat to you; but who is arguably provoked by your behavior? If you are Childress, how do you deal with this threat, without putting you and your family in danger?

Patriot86
February 27, 2012, 01:49 PM
DGU Rule #1 Don't get involved in some womans messed up drama filled life. Sounds like the woman may have been the center of the problems revolving around this whole thing. Ask any cop, domestic situations are the most dangerous situations they respond to on a day per day basis.


Mr. Waller was cut off from his only possible means of escape, driving off or running into the police station when Childress rushed him. I don't know what Childress expected to happen but I probably would have done the same in the situation. The moral of this story? Keep your life simple and stay away from women who love causing drama.

Catalyst
February 27, 2012, 02:05 PM
stay away from women who love causing drama.

Words I live by.

Isk
February 27, 2012, 02:13 PM
I'm struck by a couple things in the video. The police really man-handled the shooter during the arrest. Not that I probably wouldn't do the same as a cop, but it just goes to show that you should probably expect a few knees in the back and maybe being shoved against a wall if you are involved in a shooting.

Second, it feels like forever before someone finally gets around to providing medical treatment to the guy that was shot. An interesting look at a real life shooting.

Single Six
February 27, 2012, 02:16 PM
I concur. Few things can screw up your life quicker than a relationship with a drama queen. Or, as a T-shirt I saw at the last gun show read: "No matter how good she looks, never forget that somewhere out there is a guy who's tired of her B.S.!"

micromontenegro
February 27, 2012, 02:33 PM
The police really man-handled the shooter during the arrest.

That. The man walked into the police station to give himself in! I find such violent arrest totally uncalled for.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 27, 2012, 02:43 PM
That. The man walked into the police station to give himself in! I find such violent arrest totally uncalled for.

To be fair to the police, they can't read the man's mind to know WHY he is in the police station. All they know is that he shot a man multiple times in the parking lot and is now coming into the police station. People have walked into police stations and started shooting in the past, so I can understand why they might be concerned and aggressive. The outcome could certainly have been a lot worse for Waller than a few scrapes in that scenario.

zincwarrior
February 27, 2012, 02:44 PM
Well all they know is that there's a wanna be Terminator in the building.

BarryLee
February 27, 2012, 03:13 PM
Well, to be honest at that moment in time it appeared that Waller did what he had to do to protect himself. He apparently was being pursued and actually drove to a Police Station where he was confronted. So, from a purely tactical standpoint I am not sure what he could have done differently. Maybe you could make the argument that he should have stayed in the car and driven away, but where was he going to go after all he was already at the Police station. I suppose he could have stayed in the car and called 911 and waited for help.

While his behavior most likely contributed to the situation it was his legal right to protect himself. We can argue all day about moral issues, but that is not what the judicial system is here for.

C0untZer0
February 27, 2012, 03:22 PM
If there was a doubt about whether or not his wife was sleeping with this guy I think a private detective to determine the facts would have been better than taking a bullet.

If his wife wasn't sleeping with Waller and was being harrassed by him, a restraining order would have been better than taking a bullet.

If his wife was sleeping with Waller a divorce lawyer would have been better than taking a bullet.

And the other moral of this story is never bring a fist to a gun fight.

For Waller:

Don't get involved in some womans 'messed' up drama filled life

TailGator
February 27, 2012, 03:40 PM
I can't say that any of the three principals in this drama - the shooter, the dead guy, or the woman - are gems. But in the video, Childress appears to be the aggressor. Regardless of what went on in the days or weeks before, Waller drove up to a police station (perhaps to get help because of Childress's pursuit?) and Childress blocked in his car with his own and rushed him. The fact that it all happened in front of his children was the choice of Childress, not Waller.

There are a lot of questions that could still be asked after reading the provided news reports, like whether Waller made any previous threats towards Childress during their love-triangle, but the video speaks loudly of self defense in the context of those few minutes surrounding the shooting itself. In those few minutes of going to the police station, defending against an aggressor, and immediately turning himself in, I see nothing to fault Waller for.

As for the comments about the police roughing Waller up, I have to say I didn't see anything objectionable. We should all expect to be proned out and cuffed if we have to shoot; the police need to secure everything until they can figure out what is what and who is whom. And perhaps we should also take this as a reminder that even if our justifiable action is caught on video, we might yet go all the way to a trial.

GaryH
February 27, 2012, 03:49 PM
If the dude didn't display a weapon then the killer murdered someone because he was afraid of an ass whooping. I didn't see or hear all of the evidence, but when is it acceptable to gun someone down on a city street? To me it looked like a coward committed murder. Besides, screwing around with someone's woman is grounds for an ass whooping. Right?

GlockedNLoded32
February 27, 2012, 04:02 PM
waller saw childress getting out of the car and approaching him and he got out of his car before he even put it in park and shot childress within point blank range waller should be charged with murder

Pianoguy
February 27, 2012, 04:22 PM
Wow, what a mess. If Childress had a weapon (the responses indcate maybe a knife was involved?), it was pretty clearly self defense. Chases him in the van, cuts him off and rushes at him?? But if there was no weapon??? That was a pretty fast reaction - maybe he was already ready? Have to wonder.

Bad decisions by the deceased, even without a weapon you can't let anger get the better of you becasue you never know. But for the shooter, I'd have stayed in the car and locked the doors and tried to avoid the confrontation, have the gun ready but just not get out. I didn't see as to why they were both rushing to the police station - did the guy already threaten him once and the shooter went there for protection??? Had he been chasing him all over town?

What really gets to me is not the shooting itself but the family response to the father lying there. Really sad.

As to the police response, you bet they will throw you down and ask questions afterwards. I deal with juveniles, mostly young women, and if they feel they are armed they would get the same treatment.

Spats McGee
February 27, 2012, 04:26 PM
I dug around in the Faulkner County docket on this case. Unfortunately, the pleadings don't contain a lot of factual information that would be useful in the T&T context. What I can tell you is: (1) the defense filed motions to suppress and in limine; and (2) at the close of the case, the defense filed a Motion to have the defendant's pistol returned to him. For some reason, I can download some of the orders in the case, but I cannot open them once downloaded. As an interesting aside, the pistol was a Hi-point.

2damnold4this
February 27, 2012, 04:35 PM
waller saw childress getting out of the car and approaching him and he got out of his car before he even put it in park and shot childress within point blank range waller should be charged with murder

He was charged with murder and acquitted. What do you think Waller should have done differently? Should he have stayed in his car as has been suggested?

I wonder how Waller was carrying his firearm. Was he using a holster? Was it in the console? Could he have drawn while staying seated in his car?

Double Naught Spy
February 27, 2012, 04:44 PM
waller saw childress getting out of the car and approaching him and he got out of his car before he even put it in park and shot childress within point blank range waller should be charged with murder

I don't think you understand. He was charged with murder and acquitted because he shot in self defense against Childress.

I can see this having gone either way. On one hand you have Childress chasing down Waller who fled to the police station, boxed him in, charged him and Waller could definitely be in fear for his life.

I can also see the argument that force, but not lethal force would have been warranted as Childress apparently had no weapons and didn't attempt to use his vehicle as a weapon.

We don't hear the words that were exchanged, but apparently Waller's team was able to present a clear enough case of Waller being in fear for his life. I don't have a problem with the verdict given what was on the videos.

If you are Childress, how do you deal with this threat, without putting you and your family in danger?

You are kidding about this question, right? It is rhetorical? You don't chase down people with your car in anger and have your family inside.

GlockedNLoded32
February 27, 2012, 04:55 PM
still even though Childress boxed Waller in and approached in a threatening manner he was still unarmed...that doesn't give Waller the right to kill a defenseless man that just proves hes a coward for screwing around with another mans wife and afraid to take an a** woopin like a man instead he shoots him and gets away with murder by pleading self defense just because someone chases you and blocks you in and comes charging at you doesn't mean you shoot and kill them then plead in self defense

Bartholomew Roberts
February 27, 2012, 05:13 PM
You are kidding about this question, right? It is rhetorical? You don't chase down people with your car in anger and have your family inside.

Yes, that's a given. I was thinking more about how to deal with the alleged stalking behavior by Waller in a way that doesn't give said stalker the opportunity to shoot you multiple times. A restraining order wouldn't do much to stop it; but it would have been a good first step.

still even though Childress boxed Waller in and approached in a threatening manner he was still unarmed...that doesn't give Waller the right to kill a defenseless man that just proves hes a coward for screwing around with another mans wife and afraid to take an a** woopin like a man instead he shoots him and gets away with murder by pleading self defense just because someone chases you and blocks you in and comes charging at you doesn't mean you shoot and kill them then plead in self defense

Typically, the standard is that you can use deadly force in self-defense if a reasonable person would be in immediate fear of death or serious injury in that situation.

A grown man can certainly cause death or serious injury, even if unarmed. And even if Waller had been willing to take the chance that Childress would be satisfied with a "light" beating, he may not have wanted to take the chance Childress would gain control of his .45 Hi-Point in that highly emotional state. Apparently Waller's attorney was able to make that case to the jury. Definitely something to think about next time you decide some other citizen needs "an a** woopin."

GlockedNLoded32
February 27, 2012, 05:24 PM
I do see you point but from my stand point if i was in wallers situation i would not shoot an unarmed man no matter how agressive childress was... I guess that's just because im a decent size guy who has self defense training and a much more leveled head...but yes waller could have gone another route before it got to that point he could have called 911 and made a report that childress was following him and was threatening him and go from there or place a restraining order against him... but to shoot an unarmed man in the street in front of his kids ans girlfriend is just morally wrong to me...

hogshead
February 27, 2012, 05:33 PM
Such a shame. Its easy to armchair qb but you never really know till its you. The woman tries to make it sound like the shooter was stalking her. Guess I woulda been upset to.

Spats McGee
February 27, 2012, 05:40 PM
I do see you point but from my stand point if i was in wallers situation i would not shoot an unarmed man no matter how agressive childress was...I guess that's just because im a decent size guy who has self defense training and a much more leveled head . . . .
I can't get to youtube from work to watch the video, so I'll beg your indulgence if I'm guessing at things that would be obvious (if I could see the video).

What I don't know at this point is: Did Waller know that Childress was unarmed? I'm a very level-headed guy, but my simply "takin' a whoopin'" ain't in the cards. I'm too old to brawl, and too fat to run. Once an aggressor gets a few licks in, there's the possiblity that: (a) the aggressor could get ahold of my CCW and make the situation go from bad to horrific; or (b) the aggressor could arm himself some other way. . . . again, bad to horrific.

... but to shoot an unarmed man in the street in front of his kids ans girlfriend is just morally wrong to me...
Again, did Waller know that Childress was unarmed? If the allegations are true, that Waller had been playing patty-fingers with Childress' girlfriend, . . . or even if Waller knew of the allegations, and Childress had threatened him, as BR states in the OP, then Waller may have had a reasonable fear of death or serious bodily harm.

TailGator
February 27, 2012, 05:42 PM
Some are of the apparent opinion that if you mess with someone else's woman it is open season on you. First off, a woman is not a possession - she had a choice, too. Secondly, the repeated description of her as the wife of Childress is incorrect - she appears to be a long-time girlfriend who has borne him children, but they were not married, and she was unfaithful with at least one other man - the shooter.

It is an ugly situation with an unmarried woman bearing children to (apparently) one man and choosing to sleep with another. Society works better when certain boundaries are respected. No halos are in sight. But I don't see how anyone in this mess should be expected to waive the right to self defense, and I see no reason in law or reasonable behavior that Childress should expect to take physical revenge on his girlfriend's other lover with no restraint or consequences.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 27, 2012, 05:43 PM
I do see you point but from my stand point if i was in wallers situation i would not shoot an unarmed man no matter how agressive childress was...

Looking at the video, Waller and Childress roll up to the parking spot around 0:23 seconds (both having run the stop sign in front of the police station). Both begin to exit their vehicles around 0:26 seconds. By 0:30 seconds, the shooting is over and Childress is down.

So best case scenario, Waller had 4 seconds to see whether the guy exiting the SUV and coming around the corner of the parked car had a weapon in his hands. Just playing devil's advocate here; but if the guy has already threatened you in the past, and has now chased you through a stop sign up to the doors of a police station, and has exited his vehicle and coming at you even after you've pointed a gun at him - how much time do you want to spend on whether he has a visible weapon?

If nothing else, the video is a good example of how fast these things happen. They also show why working out some general strategies BEFORE you find yourself in trouble is so effective.

Second, it feels like forever before someone finally gets around to providing medical treatment to the guy that was shot.

According to one of the reports, one of the shots was in the side of the head. So that may have played a role in the delay until he got medical treatment.

Sgt Pepper
February 27, 2012, 05:53 PM
In watching the video, two things occur to me:

(1) It does not appear to me that the officers were overly aggressive in apprehending the suspect. They have absolutely NO IDEA what has transpired or what he is about other than they think he shot someone. If you are the police, do you have any other choice but to treat every shooter with equal force, hands up or not? However, it apparently takes at least SIX officers to get this guy. Four rush in after the guy is already face down, handcuffed, and does not appear to really be resisting or a threat.

(2) Meanwhile, the officers and other personnel do absolutely everything BUT help the guy who is bleeding out in the parking lot. They run up and down the street, they look inside the vehicles, they console the girlfriend, they chase after the white car, etc., but NEVER attend to the guy. While there are at least SIX officers on the "bad guy," there are ZERO officers with the dying "good guy." Now that is frightening.

Double Naught Spy
February 27, 2012, 06:20 PM
(2) Meanwhile, the officers and other personnel do absolutely everything BUT help the guy who is bleeding out in the parking lot. They run up and down the street, they look inside the vehicles, they console the girlfriend, they chase after the white car, etc., but NEVER attend to the guy. While there are at least SIX officers on the "bad guy," there are ZERO officers with the dying "good guy." Now that is frightening.

I am not sure what it is that you expected the officers to be doing for Childress. He got visually assessed multiple times it looks like and had his pulse checked. More than likely, not a single officer on scene had the slightest idea what they should be doing for a person that is headshot. It does not appear from the video that Childress was bleeding out (no pooling blood) and so there wasn't reason to be trying to staunch the flow of blood leaving the body.

What would you have done?

ATW525
February 27, 2012, 06:48 PM
I think the most important lesson to be learned here is that "avoidance" means more than just staying out of bad neighborhoods. Bad relationship choices can lead to bad situations. It's nice to say that women aren't possessions, but that doesn't change the fact that fooling with a woman who is in relationship with somebody else is likely to lead to conflict.

baddarryl
February 27, 2012, 09:35 PM
From the video alone it could have went either way. A hand picked jury could have been swayed for sure. Not enough info for any of us to make a judgement. There must have been a history of violence and threats as well as the moments of chase before the video brought to light in the trial. Just from that video alone and no testimony would be hard for me to justify the shoot. Shooter had a good lawyer.

Deaf Smith
February 27, 2012, 09:50 PM
(1) It does not appear to me that the officers were overly aggressive in apprehending the suspect. They have absolutely NO IDEA what has transpired or what he is about other than they think he shot someone. If you are the police, do you have any other choice but to treat every shooter with equal force, hands up or not? However, it apparently takes at least SIX officers to get this guy. Four rush in after the guy is already face down, handcuffed, and does not appear to really be resisting or a threat.

Sgt, the Cops want to make sure in the reports they 'assisted' in an arrest and thus get brownie points. That is why it takes six of 'em. And I am quite serious. They have another arrest to their record.

(2) Meanwhile, the officers and other personnel do absolutely everything BUT help the guy who is bleeding out in the parking lot. They run up and down the street, they look inside the vehicles, they console the girlfriend, they chase after the white car, etc., but NEVER attend to the guy. While there are at least SIX officers on the "bad guy," there are ZERO officers with the dying "good guy." Now that is frightening.

No brownie points I suspect for helping him (but a chance of getting AIDs from the blood, so why risk it?) And I love the way they run around with their guns (literally), two handed grips, just like the TV shows.

Deaf

Denezin
February 27, 2012, 09:55 PM
One his personal choices were bad in ethics of a relationship. But i will say the aggressive nature of the charging the defender and him almost striking his car in the process calls for self defense. The arrest in no way was police brutality or over use of force. If a man rushed me and i cant id a weapon or not i would draw a weapon. He rushed him like an idiot and scared him. Open shut case of someone being a moron.

Hook686
February 28, 2012, 03:33 AM
Is a police station a no firearms zone ? I wonder if it was expected that Waller would be unarmed by Childress. The guy had to be doing some heavy thinking as he chased Waller through town. He must have known Waller carried a gun (via the woman in center stage in this scenario). I think Waller must have had his gun in his hand when he got out of his car, as the shooting took place very quickly. In California one is expected to take a beatdown before resorting to lethal force.

Ben Towe
February 28, 2012, 05:52 AM
If Childress was headshot (and from the video it looks like the last shot was, by the way he went down), a team of Boston surgeons probably couldn't have helped him, much less the average LEO.

Not being willing to shoot an unarmed man is a foolish thought... How do you know he's unarmed unless he is naked? You take a big risk engaging in any kind of fight besides a gunfight while carrying a pistol. If it is taken then it can be turned on you or any number of innocent bystanders. Not really a smart risk to take.

Get your high school ideas of being a tough guy out of your head or take off the damn gun.

KWalk313000
February 28, 2012, 09:02 AM
I agree with Ben Towe in the post above. In a situation like this, although ill advised in the first place to be in this situation, with circumstances considered the shooting was appropriate to me if he feared for his life which he did and then proved in court.
I believe someone said he had no right to shoot him unarmed. He did it, was charged with murder, and was acquitted on the grounds of self defense, so he did have some right to shoot here obviously.
I've never been in a fight since I've started carrying and don't plan on every being in one, I'll either run away deescalate as much as I can or do what I need to defend myself.
As to the parties involved, both these guys were asking for trouble based on all the info and although the shooter was acquitted in this case it does not seem like he should be carrying a gun if he's introducing himself into situations like this. Ain't nothing like a women to get a man acting crazy. Emotions and guns don't mix. Leave 'em at home when you strap on and walk out the door.

Double Naught Spy
February 28, 2012, 09:15 AM
The guy had to be doing some heavy thinking as he chased Waller through town. He must have known Waller carried a gun (via the woman in center stage in this scenario).

Not necessarily. I dated my wife for 4 years and it was several months into our marriage before she knew of my firearms.

I think Waller must have had his gun in his hand when he got out of his car, as the shooting took place very quickly.

I certainly would be inclined be inclined to have my gun ready, if not in my hand, if some maniac is chasing me with his vehicle.

Merad
February 28, 2012, 10:06 AM
Can't see the video at work, but 2 thoughts based on the articles and comments:

-should've been on the phone with 911 as soon as he realized he was being pursued
-I probably would've stayed in the car to keep castle doctrine coverage. Under NC law if he was unarmed, you'd probably be facing the same murder charges unless you were under castle doctrine.

Spats McGee
February 28, 2012, 10:29 AM
Just in case anyone wants to order a transcript of the trial, the case was tried in the Faulkner County, Arkansas, Circuit Court, Third Division, the Honorable Charles Clawson, Jr., presiding. It was docket number CR-2010-827. The Arkansas Judicial Directory, through which you can track down the court reporter's contact information, can be downloaded here: https://courts.arkansas.gov/ by opening up the "Publications" menu on the left side.

Disclaimer: I have no financial interest in any fees charged for the preparation of the afore-mentioned transcript.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 28, 2012, 10:30 AM
-I probably would've stayed in the car to keep castle doctrine coverage.

That brings up a good point. In many states, Castle Doctrine has been extended to people's personal vehicles. This gives you greater legal protection if you stay in the vehicle and the vehicle itself can offer some protection from contact weapons like hammers/knives/fists. The flip side of this is that if your attacker has a firearm and does actually intend to kill you, staying in the car seriously limits your mobility and ability to fight back. Had Childress jumped out of the SUV with a gun and Waller was still sitting in his locked car, he would have been in a tight spot.

And the flip side of extending Castle Doctrine to vehicles is we all need to understand the danger in approaching someone's vehicle and trying to forcibly enter it (or do something that might be perceived that way like beat on the doors or windows) in those states where Castle Doctrine extends to vehicles. An acquaintance was telling me of a "road rage" incident where he was repeatedly endangered by a drunk. At a red light, he got out of his car, walked to the other's car and opened the drunk's door to find a pistol pointing at him. The drunk had definitely earned some personal counseling; but had the drunk shot my acquaintance, he might well have been justified under Castle Doctrine.

Hansam
February 28, 2012, 10:41 AM
According to what was seen in the video the shooting was justified self-defense. What happened prior to that is immaterial really in the eyes of the court. Keep in mind that he'd been charged with murder and claimed self defense in regards to the act of killing Childress. From what can be seen its self defense regardless of how immoral or wrong the events that lead up to this might have been.

To all of you who are saying you wouldn't have shot because he was unarmed... how do you know he was unarmed? He could have had a knife tucked behind his shirt... and I know of plenty of guys who could kill you without a weapon. I'll be frank and say that if it was one of them and you'd messed with their wife you'd better gun them down if they were rushing you like that. If not it'd be you dead on the ground and him being arrested for murder - and he wouldn't need a weapon for that.

Forget all the movie and macho stuff about not shooting someone who seemed unarmed. If you perceive your life or physical safety in actual danger the do what you carry for - draw and defend yourself. There's a quote I've read around here often - "I'd rather be judged by 12 than carried by 6." This is all too true. If you're not prepared to draw and shoot to defend yourself or you loved ones just because you think your attacker is unarmed then sell your EDC weapon and learn to fight like Jet Li.

Spats McGee
February 28, 2012, 10:44 AM
If Castle Doctrine is going to be debated, I'll set out what Arkansas has on the books.

First, Ark. Code Ann. 5-2-607: Use of deadly physical force in defense of a person


(a) A person is justified in using deadly physical force upon another person if the person reasonably believes that the other person is:
(1) Committing or about to commit a felony involving force or violence;
(2) Using or about to use unlawful deadly physical force; or
(3) Imminently endangering the person's life or imminently about to victimize the person as described in § 9-15-103 from the continuation of a pattern of domestic abuse.
(b) A person may not use deadly physical force in self-defense if the person knows that he or she can avoid the necessity of using deadly physical force with complete safety:
(1)(A) By retreating.
(B) However, a person is not required to retreat if the person is:
(i) In the person's dwelling or on the curtilage surrounding the person's dwelling and was not the original aggressor; or
(ii) A law enforcement officer or a person assisting at the direction of a law enforcement officer; or
(2) By surrendering possession of property to a person claiming a lawful right to possession of the property.
(c) As used in this section: (1) “Curtilage” means the land adjoining a dwelling that is convenient for residential purposes and habitually used for residential purposes, but not necessarily enclosed, and includes an outbuilding that is directly and intimately connected with the dwelling and in close proximity to the dwelling; and
(2) “Domestic abuse” means:
(A) Physical harm, bodily injury, assault, or the infliction of fear of imminent physical harm, bodily injury, or assault between family or household members; or
(B) Any sexual conduct between family or household members, whether minors or adults, that constitutes a crime under the laws of this state.
Ark. Code Ann. § 5-2-607 (West)

Second, Ark. Code Ann. § 5-2-620. Defense, person or property

(a) The right of an individual to defend himself or herself and the life of a person or property in the individual's home against harm, injury, or loss by a person unlawfully entering or attempting to enter or intrude into the home is reaffirmed as a fundamental right to be preserved and promoted as a public policy in this state.
(b) There is a legal presumption that any force or means used to accomplish a purpose described in subsection (a) of this section was exercised in a lawful and necessary manner, unless the presumption is overcome by clear and convincing evidence to the contrary.
(c) The public policy stated in subsection (a) of this section shall be strictly complied with by the court and an appropriate instruction of this public policy shall be given to a jury sitting in trial of criminal charges brought in connection with this public policy.
Ark. Code Ann. § 5-2-620 (West)

Merad
February 28, 2012, 11:04 AM
To all of you who are saying you wouldn't have shot because he was unarmed... how do you know he was unarmed? He could have had a knife tucked behind his shirt... and I know of plenty of guys who could kill you without a weapon. I'll be frank and say that if it was one of them and you'd messed with their wife you'd better gun them down if they were rushing you like that. If not it'd be you dead on the ground and him being arrested for murder - and he wouldn't need a weapon for that.

Totally depends on your state laws. I dont know about laws where you live or where this took place, but in NC you do NOT have the right to respond to a simple assault with deadly force. If you have the reasonable belief that the guy is going to kill you or do severe harm even though he's unarmed, or if you're covered by something like castle doctrine, things are different.

Hansam
February 28, 2012, 12:23 PM
Let's see - the guy chased him down to the police station. Nearly slammed his SUV into his vehicle and blocked off exit route. Then he leaves his vehicle and rushes the shooter.

Frankly if I were in his situation I'd be fearing for my life or at very least fearing serious bodily injury. That warrants drawing and shooting. Anything less and you're risking your life on a chance he won't pummel you to death or cause serious brain injury and make you a vegetable for the rest of your life.

icedog88
February 28, 2012, 12:44 PM
Does Arkansas have any laws pertaining to stand your ground? If so, castle doctrine would be a moot point.

As far as the don't mess with a woman who is in a relationship. 3 people acted like fools. The man messing with a woman in an obviously committed relationship, the woman, messing around outside of her very committed relationship, and the man who stayed with the woman who messed around outside of their very committed relationship and went looking for a fight to preserve her honor (or his own) :rolleyes:

A man who has a beef with me chases me through town, stops his car a few feet from mine and charges me obviously intends to do great bodily harm. If my gun was holstered when he was pulling up, it isn't when he leaps out.

Spats McGee
February 28, 2012, 12:48 PM
Does Arkansas have any laws pertaining to stand your ground?
See Ark. Code Ann. § 5-2-607, known as our "Stand Your Ground" law. It's posted above.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 28, 2012, 12:52 PM
Typically a "Stand Your Ground" law removes the duty to retreat in a public place. It appears Arkansas still requires you to retreat in a public place if you can do so safely. It also looks like Arkansas Castle Doctrine only extends to the home, so in this case Waller would not gain any extra legal advantage by staying in his car.

I might have to order that transcript now so I can see how Waller's lawyer handled the argument for duty to retreat.

Spats McGee
February 28, 2012, 01:19 PM
Typically a "Stand Your Ground" law removes the duty to retreat in a public place. It appears Arkansas still requires you to retreat in a public place if you can do so safely. It also looks like Arkansas Castle Doctrine only extends to the home, so in this case Waller would not gain any extra legal advantage by staying in his car.
Yes, but take a close look at § 5-2-607:

(a) A person is justified in using deadly physical force upon another person if the person reasonably believes that the other person is:
(1) Committing or about to commit a felony involving force or violence;
(2) Using or about to use unlawful deadly physical force; or . . . .

(b) A person may not use deadly physical force in self-defense if the person knows that he or she can avoid the necessity of using deadly physical force with complete safety:
(1)(A) By retreating.
(B) However, a person is not required to retreat if the person is:
(i) In the person's dwelling or on the curtilage surrounding the person's dwelling and was not the original aggressor; or
(ii) A law enforcement officer or a person assisting at the direction of a law enforcement officer; or
(2) By surrendering possession of property to a person claiming a lawful right to possession of the property.
(c) As used in this section: . . . .[edited by Spats McGee for brevity]

Ark. Code Ann. § 5-2-607 (West)(emphasis supplied by Spats)

BR, your analysis is just a little off.
It appears Arkansas still requires you to retreat in a public place if you can do so safely.
Not quite. Arkansas law requires you to retreat if: (a) you're in a public place; and (b) you know (c) that you can avoid the necessity of using deadly physical force with (d) complete safety. Not, "I think I'll have complete safety over there," or "I know I'll be safer over there," but "I know that I can avoid deadly force in complete safety by retreating."

I would agree that the car does not afford him any extra legal protection in Arkansas, but I'm not convinced that he was under a duty to retreat, either.

Bartholomew Roberts
February 28, 2012, 01:39 PM
Yes, I think you are right. I am so used to seeing the "with safety" qualifier in duty-to-retreat statutes that I kind of skimmed over that and didn't appreciate the emphasis on "complete safety."

Depending how the courts read that, that is a very fine dstinction from no duty to retreat at all since it would be rare you could ever retreat in "complete" safety.

Spats McGee
February 28, 2012, 01:47 PM
I think "with safety" is a pretty standard wording, but it looks like this has been our law since 1975. I'm digging around to see how it's been handled by our Supreme Court. I'll get some good quotes up in just a little bit, so that you can see how the contours of our duty to retreat have been drawn.

mayosligo
February 28, 2012, 02:18 PM
You really never know who you are dealing with. Not sure what the man in the SUVs plan was, but he paid the ultimate price for his action. In the end the lesson is "think" before you act. It looks like the shooter clearly "reacted" to a threat.

B.N.Real
February 28, 2012, 06:08 PM
Guy 'has relations' with another guys girl then kills the guy and people complain how the police treat him.

:rolleyes:X 478 gajillion.

m&p45acp10+1
February 28, 2012, 06:21 PM
Regardless of the shooters advances towards the shootee's girlfriend. The shootee followed like a stalker, then rushed him. I do not blame the man for defending himself with force. The man that was shot learned a lesson to die for. Not everyone gets to live to learn the lesson.

Double Naught Spy
February 28, 2012, 07:05 PM
Guy 'has relations' with another guys girl then kills the guy and people complain how the police treat him.

X 478 gajillion.

Whether or not the guy had relations with another person's girlfriend isn't relevant to the police's treatment of him after a self defense shooting where he has been acquitted. He was justified in using lethal force to defend himself against his aggressor. Like it or not, he was the intended victim in the confrontation.

Nanuk
March 1, 2012, 02:18 PM
I see no evidence that the deceased was armed. The shooter is a weasel whom bad things were catching up to. The woman was the catalyst, and twisted the emotions of these two men. I would hazard a guess that neither one of them was being thoughtful or logical. All parties were wrong, who was more wrong? I say the shooter was more wrong by introducing deadly force into a domestic situation.

Catalyst
March 1, 2012, 02:43 PM
I see no evidence that the deceased was armed. The shooter is a weasel whom bad things were catching up to. The woman was the catalyst, and twisted the emotions of these two men. I would hazard a guess that neither one of them was being thoughtful or logical. All parties were wrong, who was more wrong? I say the shooter was more wrong by introducing deadly force into a domestic situation.

Weasels may not be afforded the right by law to defend themselves from attack, but weasel-like humans do have that right.

Frank Ettin
March 1, 2012, 02:52 PM
...f the dude didn't display a weapon then the killer murdered someone because he was afraid of an ass whooping. I didn't see or hear all of the evidence, but when is it acceptable to gun someone down on a city street? To me it looked like a coward committed murder......Childress boxed Waller in and approached in a threatening manner he was still unarmed...that doesn't give Waller the right to kill a defenseless man that just proves hes a coward......Under NC law if he was unarmed, you'd probably be facing the same murder charges unless you were under castle doctrine......The shooter is a weasel whom bad things were catching up to...BUT --

In any case, Mr.Waller was charged with murder but the jury acquitted him. So the jury, who heard all the evidence, from both sides, apparently concluded that Mr. Waller's use of lethal force was legally justified under the circumstances.

m&p45acp10+1
March 1, 2012, 07:18 PM
I see some people still love to play the blame the victim game. The other man chased and pusued him. Then got out to attack him.

I do not care what you say the motivator for a guy to chase someone then rush out of a vehicle and then assaualt him are. If you are dumb enough when angry to do this. I have no pitty for you when ther other guy shoots you. If I were on the jury I can say that I would have asked why charges had even been filed.

Double Naught Spy
March 1, 2012, 07:56 PM
I say the shooter was more wrong by introducing deadly force into a domestic situation.

More wrong? Not illegally so and that is what the jury had to decide on.

I am not sure of your justification of it not being right because it was a domestic situations. People are often killed in "domestic situations." Cops often suffer the worst harm in "domestic situations."

When you are being illegally chased down and then rushed as the shooter was, you certainly may be in a position to reasonably fear for his life. It does not matter what the impetus may have been. At the point of the shooting, the shooter was the victim who was being attacked. That the attacker acted to solidify the affection of a woman isn't legal grounds for making the attack. He was wrong, made a very stupid choice, and died in front of his kids.

Nanuk
March 1, 2012, 09:43 PM
I think some people are taking my statement the wrong way.

I am not defending anyone, I am saying they are both stupid, a woman wittingly or not manipulated the situation and somebody died.

We only saw a small snippet of film and no evidence one way or the other besides the video itself. I was not on the scene, nor the jury, nor am I passing judgement. It is however suspicious as H$#@ when one part of a love triangle kills another part of the love triangle.

Lets just say this was a road rage incident taken too far. Did anyone make contact with anyone else's vehicle in any manner? Following someone as the deceased did was really stupid, stopping like he did was really stupid, getting out to confront the other driver was really stupid.

Double Naught, I say it was not right because an angry armed man killed and angry unarmed man over a relationship. Maybe where you live its ok to kill your squeeze's boyfriend. I don't know what precipitated this event, all I can do is comment on the information I have available.

Bubba in c.a.
March 1, 2012, 10:55 PM
i had a friend whose brakes gave out on a hill and he hit a squad car at the intersection. The police came out of their car with guns pointing and had the terified guy spread eagle on the ground in no time.

The reasonable person test will be debated forever, but cutting somebody off with a vehicle and them coming at him aggressively would ``put the victum in reasonable fear for his life``. Bang.

Sad deal, but cars are deadly weapons, too.

icedog88
March 2, 2012, 09:42 AM
a woman wittingly or not manipulated the situation and somebody died.

Her boyfriend she was living with allowed himself to be "manipulated".

Lets just say this was a road rage incident taken too far. Did anyone make contact with anyone else's vehicle in any manner?

That didn't matter. Isolated, a man parks at the police station, gets out of his car with his back to it, another car speeds toward him, stops short, driver charges him allowing no avenue to retreat. This man in the car was going to try to beat him up in front of the police station! Not in the right frame of mind IMO. Whether or not we saw what led up to the shooting on tape is immaterial. The jury heard the past history. Coupled with the shooting on tape, the jury made the right verdict. The law as written in Arkansas doesn't require your attacker to be as well armed as you might be. Or armed period. What if the attacker (because that's what the man who charged was), picked up a brick during the tussle were he not shot? Did he have a pocket knife that he could have pulled out? Where do you draw the line for a "fair fight"? The shooter had a .45. If the attacker had a .22, is it more fair? Those two calibers aren't equal. Justified shooting.

TailGator
March 2, 2012, 10:52 AM
I say it was not right because an angry armed man killed an angry unarmed man over a relationship. (Emphasis added.)

This sentence makes it sound like the shooter went and found his competitor and shot him so he could have the woman to himself. That is a mis-statement of the situation that appears in the video. I don't see evidence that the shooter acted in anger; nor do we have any reason to think that he shot the deceased "over of a relationship," which I take the writer to mean out of jealousy or possessiveness. The deceased was visibly angry, aggressive, and taking overtly threatening action against the shooter. What went on before was of questionable moral fiber, but it is only the back story in an incident in which a person was, according to a jury, in legitimate fear of death or serious injury and defended himself against the immediate actions of an assailant.

It certainly is good advice to keep oneself out of situations like this, and for reason that go much deeper than the prospect of gunplay. But being a jerk does not give the rest of the world the right to dispense vigilante justice; hence the right of jerks to defend themselves.

Nanuk
March 2, 2012, 11:07 AM
Icedog, what if'ing the situation does not help. What if I had a thermal nuclear bomb in my car. What if he shot him in the Hospital? Is it ok to go to a movie in a crowded firehouse?

Tailgator, precisely, we do not know what led up to the confrontation.

What if he had this or that, it changes the facts as we know them and is irrelevant. I am not saying the jury was wrong. I am saying that the shooter was rightfully arrested and charged with murder. If his attorney was able to interject reasonable doubt and get him acquitted, great, thats his job.

If you guys feel justified shooting someone in this situation, go for it.

As I have posted before, I spent a career in Law Enforcement. I have been shot at, stabbed, spit on, fought with you name it, when I have used force it has been appropriate to the situation. In MY OPINION shooting him was NOT an appropriate response. After being involved in thousands of bad situations over 3 decades, I feel that I have learned a thing or two and feel pretty comfortable calling a spade a spade. It is a rare thing indeed that you get to watch a shooting on video like that. I know you tube is full of them, but that just scratches the surface.

Anger- someone is tailgating you, following you, driving aggressively, you go to the police department with him following you, you are scared, angry, or what? Oh wait, the guy is following you because you are banging the mother of his children and you will not stay away from her after being told to do so. So the stalker shoots the guy who is apparently trying to get the stalker to leave his woman alone.

You can what if this and every scenario to death, so some of do not agree, cool. That is why we have the judicial system we do. He received a fair trial and was acquitted.

Spats McGee
March 2, 2012, 12:07 PM
IMO, it's important to recognize the distinction between "right vs. wrong" and "legal vs. illegal." Perhaps the two analyses should be the same, but they are not.

I'd say that there was plenty of stupid to go around in this situation. Thing 1 shouldn't have been playing patty-fingers with Thing 2's girl. Thing 2 shouldn't have been chasing Thing 1 around town, trying to give him the whoopin' (that's the technical term) that 2 thought 1 so richly deserved.

Still, whether the killing was right, wrong, or indifferent, the jury decided that 2 was entitled to use deadly force to defend himself. Thing 2's actions were legal, regardless of whether we think they were right or wrong.

icedog88
March 2, 2012, 12:56 PM
Nanuk, that's exactly my point. The jury ruled on the law. Not Lets just say this was a road rage incident taken too far.. Because it wasn't. The jury took all the facts and evidence and ruled on the law. Not should they have duked it out. Not that the attacker wasn't armed. And not Thing 1 (thanks Spats McGee :D) taking a whoopin that he might have deserved.

jibberjabber
March 2, 2012, 01:04 PM
With multiple rounds fired at close range and the kids sitting in the car behind the target I'm glad they weren't hit.

Marty Hayes
March 2, 2012, 02:16 PM
I want the name of the defense attorney, to solicit him for the Network. He obviously understands self-defense law, and has successfully defended one case!

Spats McGee
March 2, 2012, 02:25 PM
I want the name of the defense attorney, to solicit him for the Network. He obviously understands self-defense law, and has successfully defended one case!
The defense attorneys were (in no particular order):
1) Bill Luppen, of Little Rock, AR; and
2) Frank Shaw, of Conway, AR.

TexasJustice7
March 3, 2012, 07:28 AM
Icedog88: That didn't matter. Isolated, a man parks at the police station, gets out of his car with his back to it, another car speeds toward him, stops short, driver charges him allowing no avenue to retreat. This man in the car was going to try to beat him up in front of the police station! Not in the right frame of mind IMO. Whether or not we saw what led up to the shooting on tape is immaterial. The jury heard the past history. Coupled with the shooting on tape, the jury made the right verdict. The law as written in Arkansas doesn't require your attacker to be as well armed as you might be. Or armed period. What if the attacker (because that's what the man who charged was), picked up a brick during the tussle were he not shot? Did he have a pocket knife that he could have pulled out? Where do you draw the line for a "fair fight"? The shooter had a .45. If the attacker had a .22, is it more fair? Those two calibers aren't equal. Justified shooting

Your right that the law in Arkansas does not require your attacker to be as well armed as you might be. The law probably also requires that you did nothing to provoke the incident. This would have also been a justified shooting in Texas. One is not simply required to take a whooping, and maybe have his weapons taken away from him before defending himself.
But getting involved in a love triangle is a good way to get killed sooner or
later. Were I on that jury I would have voted not guilty as well, because
one has to render the decision according to the law. There does seem to be a lot of people who believe that you cannot shoot an unarmed person assaulting you. That is not the case in many southern states. I will bet his
legal expenses though still run into thosands of dollars.

icedog88
March 3, 2012, 08:51 AM
But getting involved in a love triangle is a good way to get killed

Or a parallelogram. Or playing your music too loud. Or anything else in this day and age it seems like. Too bad people in this situation had to find this out the hard way.

I will bet his
legal expenses though still run into thosands of dollars.

Not fair really, but in the long run, probably the best money he ever had to spend.

Double Naught Spy
March 3, 2012, 10:41 AM
Double Naught, I say it was not right because an angry armed man killed and angry unarmed man over a relationship. Maybe where you live its ok to kill your squeeze's boyfriend. I don't know what precipitated this event, all I can do is comment on the information I have available.

No, he shot and killed a man in self defense after the man vehicularly chased him down and then rushed him as he exited his own vehicle. He feared for his life. That there was an issue involving a female does nothing to change the justification for self defense.

The only person committing a criminal act here was the aggressor who is now deceased. The aggressor/deceased had no legal right to attack the shooter. Being mad about being cuckhold do not get one legal right to attack another person.

matthew261
March 3, 2012, 11:12 AM
After watching the video several times and reading through this thread, my conclusion is that there was a fine line a jury had to negotiate. In the end, justice was weighed and served. Moreover, there are a lot of lessons to be gleaned from this incident for all of us.

(non sequitur) I hope the shooter wised up and left that woman...she's trouble.

gvw3
March 3, 2012, 11:43 AM
Looks to me like the shooter was a coward afraid to take a beating. The worst person to fight is a coward as they will shoot you to avoid taking a beating. This looks like murder to me. If the other guy had a gun or a knife ok shoot him.

Frank Ettin
March 3, 2012, 12:00 PM
Looks to me like the shooter was a coward afraid to take a beating. The worst person to fight is a coward as they will shoot you to avoid taking a beating. This looks like murder to me...However, it doesn't matter how it looks to you. Mr. Waller was acquitted by a jury. The jury heard all the evidence and decided (1) that the prosecutor was unable to prove Mr. Waller committed murder; and (2) that Mr. Waller was justified in using lethal force.

gvw3
March 3, 2012, 12:58 PM
fiddletown It did matter what I think. We had the same situation in my family. My nephew was carrying his gun due to the same type of situation. His girl friend had an x that had confronted him. I talked him out of carrying the gun as it is not legal in the state of IL

They did end up in a fight but both walked away. My nephew ended up married to the girl. The father of her 1st child is still alive and they all get along fine now. They both go fishing together with all there kids.

Don't misunderstand me. If some one comes at you with a gun, knife or any other weapon I think you are justified in shooting them. If some one is kicking down the door to your home I think you can shoot 1st and ask questions latter.

AH.74
March 3, 2012, 01:07 PM
gvw3- you're willing to subject yourself to possible great bodily harm, permanent disfigurement or death from an attacker before you're willing to shoot to defend yourself?

Are you sure about that?

Talking someone out of illegally carrying a gun has no relevance to this situation. Nor does the fact that all parties involved in that situation are on friendly terms now.

icedog88
March 3, 2012, 01:38 PM
fiddletown It did matter what I think.

As it relates to Mr. Maller's case, it doesn't.

The days of fights adhering to some sort of code is long gone. "The Outsiders", "West Side Story" and movies of that ilk, don't happen. :rolleyes:

matthew261
March 3, 2012, 01:38 PM
Every situation is different. In this case, a judge and jury reviewed the evidence and made the call. Having said that, I can certainly see why it is debatable. In the video it appears that the shooter's car is not really blocked in, thus leaving him an opportunity to pull away. It also seems the shooter might have been able to dial 911, explain the situation and that he was outside the police station with the maniac in pursuit.

Frank Ettin
March 3, 2012, 02:27 PM
fiddletown It did matter what I think. We had the same situation in my family. My nephew was carrying his gun due to the same type of situation. His girl friend had an x that had confronted him. I talked him out of carrying the gun as it is not legal in the state of IL...That has nothing whatsoever to do with Mr. Waller or anything being discussed in this thread.

Spats McGee
March 3, 2012, 04:12 PM
Every situation is different. In this case, a judge and jury reviewed the evidence and made the call. Having said that, I can certainly see why it is debatable. In the video it appears that the shooter's car is not really blocked in, thus leaving him an opportunity to pull away. It also seems the shooter might have been able to dial 911, explain the situation and that he was outside the police station with the maniac in pursuit.
Possibly, but only if he had a cell phone. Given that just about everyone has one, it seems likely that Waller did, too. We simply don't know that he had a cell phone.

I would submit that he may have pulled into the police station because he hoped he'd be safe there. If that's the case, that would indicate to me that his fear of death or bodily harm began well before he arrived at the CPD. Speculation, but not entirely unreasonable, I don't think.

. . . . If the other guy had a gun or a knife ok shoot him.
Arkansas law doesn't require anyone to confirm that their attacker has a weapon before defending themselves.

9mm
March 3, 2012, 04:29 PM
I would have my gun drawn and stayed in the car. There is a door and a window that protects you from someone smashing you/stabbing you. He could have fired through that if needed be.


Lets not forget this was over a relationship... Drama.. Should never involve in that type of drama.

matthew261
March 3, 2012, 04:51 PM
"Arkansas law doesn't require anyone to confirm that their attacker has a weapon before defending themselves."

That's an important factor in the judgement

Double Naught Spy
March 3, 2012, 05:11 PM
Murder to me....

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Looks to me like the shooter was a coward afraid to take a beating. The worst person to fight is a coward as they will shoot you to avoid taking a beating. This looks like murder to me. If the other guy had a gun or a knife ok shoot him.

Right, what you think in regard to the case doesn't matter.

Oh I get it. The other guy was about to do great bodily harm to the intended victim but because he was smarter than the attacker and had a gun for protection, you are saying he is a coward.

Many people carry a gun so as to protect themselves from significant assaults. That makes them cowards?

Fight smarter, not harder, if you can't avoid the fight.

fiddletown It did matter what I think. We had the same situation in my family. My nephew was carrying his gun due to the same type of situation. His girl friend had an x that had confronted him. I talked him out of carrying the gun as it is not legal in the state of IL

They did end up in a fight but both walked away.

If it was legal for your nephew to carry a gun, would you have been so quick to talking him out of carrying protection so that he could get a proper beating to show he isn't a coward?

Just because your nephew got a beating doesn't mean that other people should get a beating. You are naive to think that such confrontations are only limited to simple beatings. It isn't exactly uncommon for jilted lovers to deliver life changing injuries or even to commit murder.

Your situation isn't anything like the case being discussed except for the fact that in both, you weren't the one who was apt to get harmed.

ltc444
March 4, 2012, 10:26 AM
After reviewing the video there are some things I noticed.

1. the shooter did everything we talk about in a variety of threads.
a.He attempted to avoid the confrontation by driving away from his pursurer.
b. He went to a safe place. The Police Station.
c. His line of retreat was blocked.


2. He faced multiple attackers.

a. The Video shows two figures charging his car. In my reading I did not see any comments on the second figure which charged the shooter.
b. The second attacker fled the scene.

3. Given the fact that the shooter had fled from his attackers and he faced multiple attackers. There was a clear disparity of force.

This a good shoot.

m&p45acp10+1
March 4, 2012, 11:13 AM
There was no second attacker in the video. Maybe the girlfriend trying to stop him. I am still having trouble with the fact that Waller was charged with murder. Regardless of preexisting circumstances it was a clear cut case of self defense.

The attacker saw that he was armed, and continued to charge at him. I would have shot him too. Not only was he charging to assualt a man in front of the police station. He saw the gun and charged anyway. Unfortunately he did not live to learn a lesson.

Bartholomew Roberts
March 4, 2012, 11:33 AM
The second person out of the vehicle in the video is the girl in the middle of said triangle.

Double Naught Spy
March 4, 2012, 11:52 AM
I am still having trouble with the fact that Waller was charged with murder. Regardless of preexisting circumstances it was a clear cut case of self defense.

I don't think anyone was arguing that it wasn't a case of self defense. The issue at hand was whether the use of lethal force was warranted/justified in this case of self defense. Was it reasonable that the shooter felt that his life was at risk for significant bodily injury or death such that his use of lethal force would be justified.

Aguila Blanca
March 4, 2012, 12:16 PM
If the dude didn't display a weapon then the killer murdered someone because he was afraid of an ass whooping. I didn't see or hear all of the evidence, but when is it acceptable to gun someone down on a city street?
In most states, it is acceptable (i.e. legal) any time the defendant believes he or she is in immediate danger of death or serous bodily injury from an assailant. The law does not require you to suck it up and take an ass-whuppin' "like a man."

In this case, I don't think the defendant was guilty of anything (other than maybe sleeping with the wrong woman). Even adulterers have a Constitutional right to self defense.

still even though Childress boxed Waller in and approached in a threatening manner he was still unarmed...that doesn't give Waller the right to kill a defenseless man
Actually, yes it does. "Unarmed" does not equal "defenseless." Childress chose to pursue Waller and initiate an attack. Waller had every right to defend himself.

What if he had this or that, it changes the facts as we know them and is irrelevant. I am not saying the jury was wrong. I am saying that the shooter was rightfully arrested and charged with murder. If his attorney was able to interject reasonable doubt and get him acquitted, great, thats his job.
But a charge of murder requires premeditation. Absent premeditation, it isn't murder. Murder means the killer set out with the intention of taking the other person's life. In this case, the shooter was trying to escape from the decedent. The shooter was attempting to "retreat" to the perceived safety of a POLICE STATION and the decedent pursued him there and initiated an assault ... RIGHT IN FRONT OF A POLICE STATION.

No way was it murder.

Marty Hayes
March 5, 2012, 12:06 PM
Here is the deal. ANYTIME an armed man uses a gun against an unarmed man, he is very likely to be charged with a crime. Courts do not universally recognize the right to shoot unarmed people. It is only at trial where the armed man gets to explain to the jury why he shot the unarmed man. That is why there was a trial, and apparently the jury decided that the armed man was justified in the shooting. Add in the history of the parties involved, I would have been extremely surprised if he hadn't been charged.

As far as not taking a beating, I will not take a beating either. The level of force I use to prevent that beating depends on the circumstances of the event.

TexasJustice7
March 5, 2012, 12:43 PM
AquillaBlanca: But a charge of murder requires premeditation. Absent premeditation, it isn't murder. Murder means the killer set out with the intention of taking the other person's life. In this case, the shooter was trying to escape from the decedent. The shooter was attempting to "retreat" to the perceived safety of a POLICE STATION and the decedent pursued him there and initiated an assault ... RIGHT IN FRONT OF A POLICE STATION.

No way was it murder.

I certainly agree with your view that it was not murder. I think that the fact that this was right in front of a police station strongly convinced the jury that
the defendant was certainly in fear for his life. Any time someone allows an unarmed assailant to assault them physically they very likely may get shot with their own gun. If one is not safe when arriving at a police station where else could they possibly run to?

lincoln5
March 6, 2012, 09:35 AM
It's clearly not murder, but the fact remains that a man is dead as
the result of a long running "scumbag soap-opera" that could have been
avoided by any one of the parties involved simply "walking away". It's
too bad that Waller and the woman can't both be held partially responsible
for the incident.

lincoln5
March 6, 2012, 09:42 AM
Just for the record:
"Murder" does not require premeditation.
First Degree murder requires premeditation.
Second and third degree murder do not require any premeditation.