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Old March 5, 2015, 12:27 PM   #1
Ruark
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Your opinion of this - saying to NOT call 911

Here's a guy, a private investigator, with some pretty hard nosed advice. I've always been taught that the VERY first thing you should do in a self defense shooting is call 911. He advises leaving the scene immediately, calling your lawyer and letting HIM call 911. A lot of what he's saying is true, however, about how you can easily hang yourself by talking to the 911 operator or the police. Still, the idea of fleeing from the scene makes me nervous. It would be interesting to hear some opinions.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwsY3L2nMnI
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Old March 5, 2015, 12:39 PM   #2
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I dont think leaving the scene of the self defense shooting is the right thing. Thats pretty much fleeing the scene of a crime ( nothing id want to do if im in the right ). In front of a judge it would look worse that you fled the scene. I always read and heard to unload your gun and lay it on the ground and call the cops , when they get there have your hands in the air and explain what happened.
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Old March 5, 2015, 12:51 PM   #3
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Two or maybe three correct statements, a couple that are very misleading, and many that are just plain wrong.

All in all, the worst advice I have ever heard--bar none.
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Old March 5, 2015, 01:37 PM   #4
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yeah hes not a lawyer... So. believe what you will. I can make a video just as easily and claim to be a self defense expert with seven years of tactical black ops experience. If you need legal advice i would recommend getting it from someone who is actually certified to give legal advice.
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Old March 5, 2015, 01:41 PM   #5
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I didn't watch the video since it sounded like nonsense. How exactly would you hang yourself by calling 911, the police etc...
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Old March 5, 2015, 02:03 PM   #6
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I would think that in most states, leaving the scene would be a crime unless it was necessary for your safety. It's illegal to leave the scene of a traffic accident in Ohio if there are injuries.

I'm thinking of myself on a jury.

1. Guy shoots somebody, calls 911, claims self defense.

2. Guy shoots someone, goes home, calls his lawyer, and his lawyer reposrts the shooting.

AS a juror, which would look more favorable to you?
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Old March 5, 2015, 02:08 PM   #7
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Just one more reason to disregard most of what you see on Youtube in particular, and the internet in general
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Old March 5, 2015, 02:50 PM   #8
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....but....but... I read it on the Internet!! It MUST be true!!!!!
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Old March 5, 2015, 03:06 PM   #9
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I'd rather take advice from a competent lawyer experienced in successfully defending self-defenders against criminal charges, than a PI with arguably zero experience on that end of things.

I know of no such attorney, who would agree with the idea of not calling 911.
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Old March 5, 2015, 03:07 PM   #10
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I did not bother ti watch the video. Based on 27 years L/E, leaving is the worst thing you can do. If you have nothing to hide why flee? Call 911 first, then lawyer up, if you feel the need.
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Old March 5, 2015, 03:26 PM   #11
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2nd to what old bear said.
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Old March 5, 2015, 03:34 PM   #12
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Gotta love the Internet. It's made a lot people a little smarter and a lot of smart people dumb.

Common sense will tell ya that unless your life is in immediate danger (i.e. a mob is about to tear your arms and legs off 'cause you shot their bud who was only trying to sell you some candy for the local Family Outreach program), you need to call 911 yourself and not leave the scene.
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Old March 5, 2015, 03:42 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ruark
Here's a guy, a private investigator, with some pretty hard nosed advice....
And some of the very worst advice I've heard.
  1. A PI is not a lawyer.

  2. Here's what a real lawyer and well known commentator on self defense law, Andrew Branca, says about not reporting an incident, even if you didn't have to fire your gun:

    1. Quote:
      ...self-reporting gave you a patina of credibility...
    2. (emphasis in original)
      Quote:
      ...your failure to report the events may be characterized as “flight from the scene.” This is very bad, indeed, because it suggests what’s legally referred to as “consciousness of guilt.”

      “Consciousness of guilt” refers to evidence from which one can infer that a person believes themselves to be guilty of wrongdoing....
    3. Quote:
      ...The jury will be explicitly instructed that if they find credible evidence of such conduct they can infer from that evidence that not only does the prosecution believe the defendant is guilty, even the defendant believes the defendant is guilty...
    4. Quote:
      ...looking legally vulnerable to a prosecutor is much like bleeding in a pool of sharks. The outcome will probably be unpleasant....

  3. Here's what Mr. Branca says about not saying anything to the police without your lawyer:

    1. (emphasis in original)
      Quote:
      ...The “say nothing until lawyer” advice is based on the reality that anything you say to police can and may be used against you. It’s certainly true that the only 100% certain way to avoid saying anything incriminating is to say nothing at all.

      Rarely mentioned, however, is that what you DON’T say can also be used against you. Sure, you have a Constitutional right to remain silent, and once you’ve asserted that right your silence cannot be used against you.

      But this privilege applies post-arrest. Your silence before then can certainly be used by the Prosecution to infer guilt—an innocent person would have mentioned self-defense at the time, they’ll argue, and the fact that you did not do so suggests you only fabricated your story of self-defense after the fact to avoid criminal liability....
    2. (emphasis in original)
      Quote:
      The 911 Call: Be the Complainant, Not the Respondent

      A huge problem for Michael Dunn in his claim of self-defense was the considerable consciousness of guilt evidence he provided to prosecutors. In particular, his flight from the scene well beyond the need to secure his safety and his failure to ever report the shooting to law enforcement before he was arrested at gun point on a murder warrant. This conduct was far more consistent with the behavior of someone who believed he’d “gotten away with it,” than it was with the behavior who believed they’d acted in lawful self-defense. This was especially damaging given that the only evidence of self-defense came from Dunn’s own testimony in court....
    3. (emphasis in original)
      Quote:
      ...Let’s assume for purposes of this post, then, that you buy into the value of being the complainant rather than the respondent, and you therefore are the first to call 911.

      Taking the “say nothing until I talk to my lawyer” advice literally, exactly what are you going to say when the dispatcher answers your call? “I will say nothing until I’ve spoken to my attorney.” Really? When they ask “what’s your emergency?” surely that statement can’t be your reply. Rather, you’ll necessarily provide some description of what’s happened and the location to which you’re asking law enforcement (and ambulance) be sent.

      So, you’re ALREADY speaking with the police. And as long as you’re doing so, my advice is to get your claim of self-defense into the evidentiary record as soon as possible. You were attacked, you were in fear for your life, you were forced to act in self-defense. Of course, all of this will be recorded, and that recording will be admissible in court. As a result, the jury will get to hear your claim of self-defense in your own words and voice, with all the stress of the moment that such an event necessarily brings with it....

  4. It's long been the fact that conduct can be evidence and that a jury may draw inferences from conduct.

    1. U.S. v. Perkins, 937 F.2d 1397 (C.A.9 (Cal.), 1990), at 1402:
      Quote:
      ...the instruction explicitly stated, "the jury may consider [the false statements] as circumstantial evidence of the defendant's guilt." Id. at 1104. Second, we have approved the use of this instruction on false exculpatory statements. See United States v. Boekelman, 594 F.2d 1238, 1240 (9th Cir.1979) (court noted approval of standard Devitt & Blackmar instruction and distinguished Di Stefano in upholding a variation from the standard instruction); United States v. Wood, 550 F.2d 435, 443 (9th Cir.1976)....
    2. State v. Wimbush, 260 Iowa 1262, 150 N.W.2d 653 (Iowa, 1967), at 656:
      Quote:
      ...In Wigmore on Evidence, Third Ed., section 276, Volume II, page 111, under the title 'Conduct as Evidence of Guilt' the editor states: 'It is today universally conceded that the fact of an accused's flight, escape from custody, resistance to arrest, concealment, assumption of a false name, and related conduct, are admissible as evidence of consciousness of guilt, and thus of guilt itself.'

      McCormick on Evidence, section 248, pages 532, 533, puts it thus: "The wicked flee when no man pursueth.' Many acts of a defendant after the crime seeking to escape the toils of the law are received as admissions by conduct, constituting circumstantial evidence of consciousness of guilt and hence of the fact of guilt itself. In this class are flight from the locality after the crime, assuming a false name, resisting arrest, * * *.' See also Jones on Evidence, Fifth Ed., section 386, page 717.

      We have held many times that evidence of escape from custody and flight of an accused is admissible as a criminating circumstance. State v. O'Meara, 190 Iowa 613, 625, 177 N.W. 563, 569; State v. Heath, 202 Iowa 153, 156, 209 N.W. 279, 281; State v. Ford, Iowa, 145 N.W.2d 638, 641. See also 29 Am.Jur.2d, Evidence, section 280, and 22A C.J.S. Criminal Law § 625 a....
    3. State v. Lonnecker, 237 Neb. 207, 465 N.W.2d 737 (Neb., 1991), at 743:
      Quote:
      ... Although Clancy involved evidence of the defendant's attempted intimidation or actual intimidation of a State's informant or witness, evidence which was admissible under Neb.Evid.R. 404(2) ("other acts"), the rationale for "conscious guilt" evidence is equally applicable in Lonnecker's case.

      Lonnecker's hiding in the crawl space was evidence of his "conscious guilt" concerning the marijuana located on the premises which were under his control, that is, a conscious guilt concerning possession and cultivation of marijuana as a controlled substance. ...
    4. Martin v. State, 707 S.W.2d 243 (Tex.App.-Beaumont, 1986), at 245:
      Quote:
      ...In 2 RAY, TEXAS LAW OF EVIDENCE CIVIL AND CRIMINAL sec. 1538 (Texas Practice 3rd ed. 1980), we find:

      "Sec. 1538 Conduct as Evidence of Guilt

      "A 'consciousness of guilt' is perhaps one of the strongest kinds of evidence of guilt. It is consequently a well accepted principle that any conduct on the part of a person accused of crime, subsequent to its commission, which indicates a 'consciousness of guilt' may be received as a circumstance tending to prove that he committed the act with which he is charged." ...

      See also Cuellar v. State, 613 S.W.2d 494 (Tex.Crim.App.1981)....

  5. The advice from the video the OP linked to could well seriously damage the credibility of a person claiming self defense, but that person's credibility will be vital to sustaining his claim of self defense.

    Several years ago a lawyer by the name of Lisa Steele wrote an excellent article for lawyers on defending a self defense case. The article was entitled "Defending a Self Defense Case" and published in the March, 2007, edition of the journal of the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers, The Champion. It was republished in four parts, with permission, on the website, Truth About Guns. The article as republished can be read here: Part 1; Part 2; Part 3; and Part 4.

    As Ms. Steele explains the unique character of a self defense case in Part 1 (emphasis added):
    Quote:
    ...Self-defense is all-or-nothing. In order to establish it, the client has to admit being at the crime scene, with a weapon, which he or she used to intentionally harm the aggressor. The client has to admit that he injured the aggressor. The client has to convince the jury that if a reasonable person had been standing in his shoes, the reasonable person would have done the same thing. ...
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Old March 5, 2015, 04:00 PM   #14
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The only people who could successfully leave the scene and have a lawyer call would be the elite class (read certain politicians and wealthy people), of which I am not a part. I can't see any possible benefit in doing that if you are justified in your actions, which will need to be articulated to the judge because arrest and hearing will certainly follow. Like someone else said, stay there and if you get accused, then lawyer up
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Old March 5, 2015, 04:53 PM   #15
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Take a look at what this, I think the advice is well founded:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCZXZMYyRl4
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Old March 5, 2015, 05:56 PM   #16
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I can see plenty of legitimate reasons to retreat from the scene after a self-defense shooting. It may not be safe to remain in the immediate vicinity because your attacker might not be completely out of the fight, he might have friends or you might simply have the wrong color skin. That said, in such circumstances I would call 911 immediately, inform them of the situation and make arrangements to meet with officers in a safer location.

Calling your lawyer and having them call 911 seems weird, though. As a juror I would think that particular course of action sounds a bit cold and calculating.
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Old March 5, 2015, 06:05 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ATW525
I can see plenty of legitimate reasons to retreat from the scene after a self-defense shooting. It may not be safe to remain in the immediate vicinity because your attacker might not be completely out of the fight, he might have friends or you might simply have the wrong color skin....
True enough. But then you both (1) need to call and report the incident as soon as you are safe; and (2) must be able to articulate why you believed that you had to leave for your safety.
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Old March 5, 2015, 06:08 PM   #18
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I wouldn't waste time calling your lawyer first. Whoever calls 911 first has the advantage of being seen as the victim. Plus it's to your credit that in calling 911, it can be seen that you thought you were doing the right thing or at least not doing anything wrong. Someone who gets shot while robbing a 7/11 probably isn't going to call 911 if he is able to escape. A victim would though.
All this of course is assuming that the guy you shot is still alive. Even if he wasn't though, I would still call 911 immediately.
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Old March 5, 2015, 06:17 PM   #19
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I have a lawyer on retainer for such a situation. His advise:

CALL 911 AS SOON AS YOU POSSIBLY CAN. Tell them there has been a shooting, give location. Request police & EMS. DO NOT identify yourself to the 911 operator.

CALL ME (my lawyer). Tell me what has happened & give location. DO NOT FLEE THE SCENE UNLESS YOUR LIFE IS IN DANGER. When police arrive, advise them that you made the 911 call but you will not make any statement until you have legal representation present.
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Old March 5, 2015, 06:30 PM   #20
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Leaving the scene always carries some connotation of guilt unless the circumstances make it clear that it was obviously dangerous to remain in place. If there's still danger at the scene and you can articulate (and/or demonstrate) that danger to the authorites then leaving the scene is reasonable. If the danger is clearly contained and the good guys are obviously in control then leaving is a bad idea.

Calling 911 as soon as possible is a good idea for more than one reason.

1. You may need help. You may find that you have been injured when the adrenaline starts to wear off. The extreme stress may trigger a heart attack or other serious health problem. The attacker may not be neutralized and may resume the attack.

2. Delaying the 911 call longer than necessary can create the appearance of guilt. It can make it look like you were trying to get your story straight before calling or that you only called after thinking about it and realizing that it might help you look less guilty. After all the good guy wants the help of the authorities as soon as possible. It's the bad guy who puts off calling the authorities as long as possible.

3. If there's any possibility of the other party calling 911, there can be an advantage in being the first to call. I've heard more than one LEO mention that the first person to call is often assumed to be the injured party.
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Old March 5, 2015, 06:47 PM   #21
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I won't comment on specifics, but I will say that if I were ever in contact with the police in a situation where I might be accused or arrested, I wouldn't want Mr. Huebl anywhere in the same state. If I adopted his kind of smug, arrogant, aggressive, nasty attitude, I would have even good cops itching to beat the heck out of me, then toss me in jail and lose the key.

Jim
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Old March 5, 2015, 07:59 PM   #22
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+1 Frank.
The AZ CCW class I took was taught by a firearms attorney. His teaching was based on his experience in defending scores of self defense shootings. Franks advice is spot on.
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Old March 5, 2015, 08:43 PM   #23
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Quote:
...Calling 911 as soon as possible is a good idea for more than one reason.

1. You may need help. You may find that you have been injured when the adrenaline starts to wear off. The extreme stress may trigger a heart attack or other serious health problem. The attacker may not be neutralized and may resume the attack....
Another thing: your assailant might be neutralized and no longer a threat; but he may also be alive and need medical attention. If you take off to call your lawyer and leave another human, even if he did attack you, to bleed-out on the street instead of calling for medical assistance, it won't look good to your jury.
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Old March 5, 2015, 08:45 PM   #24
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Isn't leaving the scene a viablre option..

if the scene is not quiet or getting more dangerous??
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Old March 5, 2015, 09:02 PM   #25
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrothWA
if the scene is not quiet or getting more dangerous??
That is different and has already been addressed several times. Don't you read the thread before posting?

And you will still need to call the police as soon as possible and be able to explain to everyone's satisfaction why you decided it was dangerous to hang around. And if an injured person needs medial attention, you better call sooner rather than later.
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