Jay O’Conner, iReporter & CEO of WCNTV.TV
CNN IREPORT BRIEF FOR SOLEDAD O’BRIEN’s Town Hall “Beyond Trayvon: Race and Justice in America”!
On Air Question: HOW DO YOU PROVE THE STAND YOUR GROUND LAWS IN A CASE LIKE TRAYVON MARTIN?
QUESTIONS: How do your reconcile the 2nd Amendment, Stand your Ground Laws, Citizen’s Arrest provisions of the constitution and what happened to Treyvon Martin?
Follow Up Question: Is the NAACP correct about Al Sharpton and Jessie Jackson and shouldn’t the call for Civil Rights Activism be reconciled with the Platinum Rights Activism as expressed by UN Resolution 64/169 and the injustice it seeks to correct?
Should I be invited back for a longer segment on the Economic Impact of the Treyvon Movement and Civil Rights to Platinum Rights.
BACKGROUND DATA FOR PRODUCERS:
THE SECOND AMENDMENT
As passed by the Congress:
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
As ratified by the States and authenticated by Thomas Jefferson, Secretary of State:
A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.[
STAND YOUR GROUND LAW
A stand-your-ground law states that a person may use deadly force in self-defense when there is reasonable belief of a threat, without an obligation to retreat first. In some cases, a person may use deadly force in public areas without a duty to retreat. Under these legal concepts, a person is justified in using deadly force in certain situations and the “stand your ground” law would be a defense or immunity to criminal charges and civil suit. The difference between immunity and a defense is that an immunity bars suit, charges, detention and arrest. A defense permits a plaintiff or the state to seek civil damages or a criminal conviction. More than half of the states in the United States have adopted the Castle doctrine, stating that a person has no duty to retreat when their home is attacked. Some states go a step further, removing the duty of retreat from any location. “Stand Your Ground”, “Line In The Sand” or “No Duty To Retreat” laws thus state that a person has no duty or other requirement to abandon a place in which he has a right to be, or to give up ground to an assailant. Under such laws, there is no duty to retreat from anywhere the defender may legally be. Other restrictions may still exist; when in public, a person must be carrying the firearm in a legal manner, whether concealed or openly.
Each state, with the exception of North Carolina, permits citizen arrests if the commission of a felony is witnessed by the arresting citizen, or when a citizen is asked to assist in the apprehension of a suspect by police. The application of state laws varies widely with respect to misdemeanors, breaches of the peace, and felonies not witnessed by the arresting party. For example, Arizona law allows a citizen’s arrest if the arrestor has personally witnessed the offense occurring.
American citizens do not carry the authority or enjoy the legal protections held by police officers, and are held to the principle of strict liability before the courts of civil- and criminal law including, but not limited to, any infringement of another’s rights. Nonetheless many citizens’ arrests are popular news stories.
Though North Carolina General Statutes have no provision for citizens’ arrests, detention by private persons is permitted and applies to both private citizens and police officers outside their jurisdiction. Detention is permitted where probable cause exists that one has committed a felony, breach of peace, physical injury to another person, or theft or destruction of property. Detention is different from an arrest in that in a detention the detainee may not be transported without consent.