Georgia Criminal Defense Blog

Atlanta Homicide Reported As An Act of Self Defense

Posted by Richard Lawson | Nov 15, 2018 | 0 Comments

According to reports, a man was shot and killed in a NW Atlanta Park last Saturday. Apparently, police are reporting the shooting as an act of self defense by another individual. The deceased allegedly got into an argument and subsequently a physical fight with another man. 

As a Georgia Criminal Defense Attorney, I will outline one of the most well-known of the Georgia Criminal Defenses: self defense.

Self Defense in Georgia

Self Defense in Georgia is defined by law in the following statute.

A person is justified in threatening or using force against another when and to the extent that he or she reasonably believes that threat or force is necessary to defend himself or herself or a third person against such other's imminent use of unlawful force; however, a person is justified in using force which is intended or likely to cause death or great bodily harm only if he or she reasonably believes that such force is necessary to prevent death or great bodily injury to himself or herself or a third person or to prevent commission of a forcible felony. O.C.G.A. §16-3-21.

However, there are three situations where an individual is not justified in using self defense. First, if he initially provokes the use of force against himself with the intent to use such force as an excuse to inflict bodily harm upon the assailant. Second, if he is attempting to commit, committing, or fleeing after the commission or attempted commission of a felony. And third, if he was the aggressor or was engaged in combat by agreement unless he withdraws from the encounter and effectively communicates to such other person his intent to do so and the other, notwithstanding, continues or threatens to continue the use of unlawful force.

Practice Note

If the man is charged with a homicide offense such as:

…then Self Defense could possibly fully defend him depending on the evidence and the facts of the case. As of right now, he was only detained briefly for questioning and was later released.

If you or a loved one has been arrested in Georgia, contact a Georgia Criminal Defense Lawyer today. We can determine which course of action would work best for you and which defenses apply. Contact us today. 

About the Author

Richard Lawson

Managing Partner at Lawson & Berry:


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