Home Defense And The Force Of A Homeowner

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The topic of home defense and the extent of force a homeowner is allowed to use depends on the state one resides in as well as the state’s laws on home defense. In many states, like the state of New Jersey, there is what is known as, “Duty to Retreat” laws. These states are predominantly located in the north and do not allow the homeowner to take much action against an intruder. The “Duty to Retreat” is a duty of which citizens of a particular state are required by law to first look for a path of retreat before confronting the intruder. If the path of retreat does not present itself, the home owner can then take action. This “action” however, does not allow the homeowner to forcibly engage with the intruder. The intruder must first show signs of aggression towards the homeowner or their family. In the event that the intruder does show signs of aggression, the homeowner is only allowed to counter with equal force. For example, if the intruder only has their hands to fight the homeowner, the homeowner cannot draw a firearm and discharge at the intruder. This is the mentality of many states across the nation when it comes to defending one’s self or personal property. However, the other half of the states in the United States employ different tactics, which allow the homeowner to stand their ground against an intruder. These states are predominantly located in the south, with the exception of three northern states: Alaska, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania. Within these states, a
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