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Householder vs The Law

One in 20 householders set booby traps for burglars - Telegraph

According to the Crown Prosecution Service, a householder who "knew of an intended intruder and set a trap to hurt or kill them rather than involve the police would be acting with very excessive and gratuitous force and could be prosecuted."
Sixty-five per cent of British householders would arm themselves with bats, walking sticks and other household items to use as protection if they were to come face-to-face with an uninvited guest.
Seven per cent would even use an axe and 14 per cent would use a knife.
Andrew Lowe, head of home insurance at Direct Line, which polled 2,000 people, said: "Our research shows the extremes that some householders would go to in order to protect their property from intruders. "However, while it's natural for many to look out for their family and their belongings, we do not recommend anyone resorts to violence as you put yourself at risk of injury or possibly even death.

Of course not, any Billy Burglar scaling the walls of The Castle will have only a feather cushion thrown at them and be offered a nice cup of tea, we don't want anyone to get the idea that I might consider anything rougher do we. The disparity between what the law and ordinary people consider to be right and proper grows wider.


Of course in a rational world, UK householders would be able to cut burglars in half with one of these: Remington SP-10 shotgun, and the fuzz would merely arrange for the bits to be carted off. Having the carpets steam-cleaned would be your own affair.

I vaguely remember that a householder is entitled to do whatever is reasonable and necessary to defend their property- so if the burglar appears ready to depart after a gentle word that is all you may do- on the other hand if the burglar is less reasonable you may be proportionately less gentle.
Just make sure you don't shoot him or her (mustn't be sexist) in the back- or the courts may think that the defending is done and you are now the aggressor.

Since crime is now seen as an occupation shouldnt crims be covered by the Health and Safety at Work Act? Before commiting a crime they should write a risk assesment and method statement, and provide them to the people they intend to rob. Failure to do this should make them liable to prosecution.

Pat: reasonable and necessary in the case of crackheads climbing through your living room window to nick your DVD player is to cut them in half with a 10-bore shotgun. Case dismissed. Next!

'Reasonable force' is a smokescreen, what you actually get is the CPS prosecuting people for simply marching abusive little yobs home by their shoulders without hurting them, that in their eyes is 'assault' and the one doing the marching is a villainous bastard.

Really I don't see why 'reasonable force' serves any purpose, to anyone, other than the criminals as the intent is to make committing confrontational/violent crime less dangerous. That's the police, CPS and courts all enthusiatically getting behind something aimed at making violent crime less risky, and justifying it with cynical use of the word 'reasonable'.

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