View Full Version : Does VA have the Castle Doctrine ?

April 13, 2009, 09:19 AM
I read someone on there the other day mentioning a state with the Castle Doctrine , and went in search of VA law that states it , but could not find anything confirming it.

Then this happens over the weekend ( about 20 miles from my home and family and about 7 miles from my Sons part time residence)


I am really hoping the Castle Doctrine is active and in place in Va. What once was such a quiet great neighborhood that I grew up in has seen a recent influx of police , drug busts ( from very upstanding appearing citizens ) and issues with DUI related deaths...

It really makes me wish I could put my kids back into the same country neighborhood I grew up in ( same neighborhood , it's just grown up and less rural than it once was).

Brian Pfleuger
April 13, 2009, 09:26 AM
According to Wiki (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Castle_Doctrine), no, but that information is always suspect, to say the least.

Do a google search using terms like "virginia penal code" and "physical force virginia". It's hiding there somewhere, just keep digging.

April 13, 2009, 10:04 AM
Thanks Peet , or Pezza , Or Killa lol

I'll search those terms , Virginia Castle Doctrine and Virginia " home defense " didn't work well ....

I'll get back with what I found.

April 13, 2009, 10:32 AM
Try www.handgunlaw.us as a good place to start.

April 13, 2009, 01:12 PM
This should anwser your question. If your are a VA resident and not a member of the VCDL I would reccomend joining.


April 13, 2009, 01:38 PM
Virginia is a case law state. Some of the "case law" cited in previous posts have changed significantly due to rulings in more recent cases...


But to answer the original question, no...VA has no Castle Doctrine law.

April 13, 2009, 03:57 PM
Get a copy of 'The Virginia Gun Owner's Guide.'

All Virgina lethal force law is common (case) law.

Virginia is a justifiable / excusable homicide state.

You do not have to retreat form any place you are legally present, and may meet deadly force with deadly force.

The case law is pretty clear and definitive.

The only thing missing is that you have no civil protection form the BG, but the suite would be laughed out of court in Virginia.

April 14, 2009, 06:39 AM
We don't have a specific "castle doctrine" statute here in Virginia. The main issue to deal with is: were you justified in using leathal force? Two thirty in the morning, an intruder is coming down the hall and he's between you and any door going outside; I'd say justified. Sometimes fleeing is not safe. There's no one cut and dry answer. Main thing is that you feared for your life and you had no other obvious and clear cut alternatives. When the police arrive, just tell them that you are too shook up to talk about it right now.

I hope after this years elections we can get "castle doctrine" passed.

I'm not a lawyer, this is just the way I see things.

chris in va
April 14, 2009, 11:55 AM
Yup, case law state. Every incident can be new territory. You can be hung out to dry, or get billed 'justifiable'. Just try to study the state laws as best you can.