After coming across a classmate's blog and reading an article that really shocked me, I had to raise question and voice my opinion of a law that I feel is reasonable, yet lacks description and authority. If a law is made that is not detailed, then the law can be broken in many ways because of the fact that it was never understood or the meaning is not expressed in the right way. Which leads me to my thoughts and feelings towards Mr. Horn’s story.
Texas law allows people to use deadly force to protect their own property to stop arson, burglary, robbery, theft or criminal mischief at night. I do feel that is logical for public safety and one should have the right to protect themselves and their family members. However, Mr. Horn, shot and killed two men that had burglarized his neighbors home, not his, but were on his property. He did call police and informed them he was going to shoot the men so they wouldn’t get away with it and that is exactly what he did, even after they asked him several times to stay in his house and not shoot.
So first, I question the law because I feel it should have been more descriptive and stated that one could use deadly force to protect their own self if a criminal was breaking or entering into their own home, and only if the criminal enters into the home could the individual then use deadly force. In result, people would less likely shoot at people on their property that aren’t really harming them. That is scary because I feel sorry for anyone standing on someone’s lawn by accident when the person in the house might be aiming a gun at them for the wrong assumptions. I do realize Mr. Horn witnessed a crime, however it really didn’t involve him unless the men were to threaten him and make way into his home. With this law being assessed the way it is, people like Mr. Horn feel they can shoot at people who are committing crimes so they don’t get away with anything illegal. Therefore, I think the law needs to allow individuals with the authority to use deadly force only if the criminal is inside their house or is shooting at them on their property, or else innocent people will end up dead, or the cops won’t even get the phone call. Unless there is evidence that someone was breaking in, then you can’t get away with shooting at somebody, so let them enter before you shoot at them, or the crime might be turned against you in my opinion.
To answer the hypothetical question, no I would not shoot unless they enter inside my house and I felt threatened. I would not have the right to shoot the burglars if they didn’t steal anything from me, I would call the cops just as Mr. Horn did, however I would let them finish it out since it is there duty.
I do not think Mr. Horn had the right to shoot the burglars, so I disagree to an extent. The problem is that he thought he had the right to but he was told not to by the dispatcher and didn’t listen. Since his call to police was recorded, he could be held accountable for disregarding police authority and I do think he should be punished. My point is that if the law was based only on if the criminal enters into one’s house and that individual feels threatened, then pursue deadly force. Otherwise until they do so, do not shoot because these days you can’t just say property because that could mean land or lawn, which isn’t always purposely being trespassed.