Every individual has the right to protect themselves against danger. Many people use the term self-defense or aggression, which may be subjected to a criminal offense. The penalties and severity of these crimes mainly depend on the activities performed.
Suppose you have been in a situation where you have used external force in the face of self-defense, and you are not sure that it was just an involuntary action or a crime. In that case, you must consult a New Jersey criminal defense attorney to clarify the situation.
The situation in which you have the right to defend yourself:
- Abrupt danger:
You can preach the right to self-defense if you believe that the threat is predetermined or unavoidable. Whether it be verbal or physical, you can protect yourself with force. Even if the danger is vocal and accompanied by a physical threat, you can still retaliate in self-defense. But in case the other party stops these, the right to self-defense will be invoked too.
- Trespassing in your property:
If a person unlawfully enters your property without your prior consent, then in this situation, you have the right to use lethal force to get that person eliminated from your property. This is called the Castle doctrine and is a valid rule in many states, and you cannot be arrested for it.
- Equivalent response:
The amount of threat that the individual encountered must be matched by the level of self-defense. This shows the individual can only use as much force as is expected to neutralize the threat. Self-defense would not be justifiable if more impairment occurred than the threat would have caused.
- When fear is predicted:
When you are in a situation where you know that the other individual will harm as they are behaving irresponsibly, then in that situation, self-defense is justified.
When self-defense becomes an act of aggression:
Suppose you cannot prove your unwarranted anger or violence as self-defense, then in that scenario. In that case, you might have to serve time in jail, depending upon the severity of the incident. The judge will determine this after hearing from both parties.
The court may declare you as a convicted criminal if you respond to an unreasonable threat with brutal force resulting in a severe amount of damage to other people. If you are convicted of these crimes, you may face harsh punishments.