Self Defence

Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (CJI): "you can use force to defend yourself, family and friends.

Criminal Law Act s3(1): "you can use force to prevent a crime or make a lawful arrest."

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Self defence

Criminal Justice and Immigration Act 2008 (CJI): "you can use force to defend yourself, family and friends.

Criminal Law Act s3(1): "you can use force to prevent a crime or make a lawful arrest."

NOTE: If D raises self defence the burden of proof is on the prosecution who will try to show one of two things:

1) The force used was not necessary

s76(4) CJI: "D can use force if they genuinely believe it is required in the circumstances, even if D is mistaken and whether or not the mistake was reasonable (subjective test).

s76(5): "intoxication mistakes are not allowed."

Gladstone Williams - D attacked a person who he thought was a mugger, turned out he was making an arrest. Held: defence available as D reasonably believed force was necessary.

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Threats and pre-emptive strikes

Threats and pre-emptive strikes:

Beckford - Held: "D can strike first and does not have to wait until he has been hit. Defence still available."

Is there a duty to show that you are unwilling to fight?

Bird - Held: "No, because this placed too great an obligation on D."

2) If force was necessary then the amount of force used was unreasonable:

s76(3): Prosecution must prove that force was unreasonable in the circumstances as perceived by D.

Palmer - Lord Morris: "D cannot weigh the exact measure of necessary force." If D only did what he honestly and instinctively thought was necessary in the heat of the moment the this is evidence that only reasonable force was used.

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