Texas Self-Defense Penal Code & Laws

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Texas1911

TGT Addict
May 29, 2017
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Austin, TX
Source: Texas Penal Code

Preface: The original text and wording is not altered in any way. Only the color
and appearance of the text is altered to improve comprehension.

§ 9.31. SELF-DEFENSE.


(a) Except as provided in Subsection (b), a person is justified in using force against another
when and to the degree the actor reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary
to protect the actor against the other's use or attempted use of unlawful force.
The actor's belief that the force was immediately necessary as described by this
subsection is presumed to be reasonable if the actor:

(1) knew or had reason to believe that the person
against whom the force was used:

(A) unlawfully and with force entered, or was
attempting to enter unlawfully and with force, the actor's occupied
habitation, vehicle, or place of business or employment;

(B) unlawfully and with force removed, or was
attempting to remove unlawfully and with force, the actor from the
actor's habitation, vehicle, or place of business or employment; or

(C) was committing or attempting to commit
aggravated kidnapping, murder, sexual assault, aggravated sexual
assault, robbery, or aggravated robbery;

(2) did not provoke the person against whom the force
was used; and

(3) was not otherwise engaged in criminal activity,
other than a Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a law or
ordinance regulating traffic at the time the force was used.

(b) The use of force against another is not justified:

(1) in response to verbal provocation alone;

(2) to resist an arrest or search that the actor knows
is being made by a peace officer, or by a person acting in a peace
officer's presence and at his direction, even though the arrest or
search is unlawful, unless the resistance is justified under
Subsection (c);

(3) if the actor consented to the exact force used or
attempted by the other;

(4) if the actor provoked the other's use or attempted
use of unlawful force, unless:

(A) the actor abandons the encounter, or clearly
communicates to the other his intent to do so reasonably believing
he cannot safely abandon the encounter; and

(B) the other nevertheless continues or attempts
to use unlawful force against the actor; or

(5) if the actor sought an explanation from or
discussion with the other person concerning the actor's differences
with the other person while the actor was:

(A) carrying a weapon in violation of Section
46.02; or

(B) possessing or transporting a weapon in
violation of Section 46.05.

(c) The use of force to resist an arrest or search is
justified:

(1) if, before the actor offers any resistance, the
peace officer (or person acting at his direction) uses or attempts
to use greater force than necessary to make the arrest or search;
and

(2) when and to the degree the actor reasonably
believes the force is immediately necessary to protect himself
against the peace officer's (or other person's) use or attempted use
of greater force than necessary.

(d) The use of deadly force is not justified under this
subchapter except as provided in Sections 9.32, 9.33, and 9.34.

(e) A person who has a right to be present at the location
where the force is used, who has not provoked the person against
whom the force is used, and who is not engaged in criminal activity
at the time the force is used is not required to retreat before
using force as described by this section.

(f) For purposes of Subsection (a), in determining whether
an actor described by Subsection (e) reasonably believed that the
use of force was necessary, a finder of fact may not consider
whether the actor failed to retreat.

§ 9.32. DEADLY FORCE IN DEFENSE OF PERSON.

(a)
A person is justified in using deadly force against another:

(1) if the actor would be justified in using force
against the other under Section 9.31; and

(2) when and to the degree the actor reasonably
believes the deadly force is immediately necessary:

(A) to protect the actor against the other's use
or attempted use of unlawful deadly force; or

(B) to prevent the other's imminent commission of
aggravated kidnapping, murder, sexual assault, aggravated sexual
assault, robbery, or aggravated robbery.

(b) The actor's belief under Subsection (a)(2) that the
deadly force was immediately necessary as described by that
subdivision is presumed to be reasonable if the actor:

(1) knew or had reason to believe that the person
against whom the deadly force was used:

(A) unlawfully and with force entered, or was
attempting to enter unlawfully and with force, the actor's occupied
habitation, vehicle, or place of business or employment;

(B) unlawfully and with force removed, or was
attempting to remove unlawfully and with force, the actor from the
actor's habitation, vehicle, or place of business or employment; or

(C) was committing or attempting to commit an
offense described by Subsection (a)(2)(B);

(2) did not provoke the person against whom the force
was used; and

(3) was not otherwise engaged in criminal activity,
other than a Class C misdemeanor that is a violation of a law or
ordinance regulating traffic at the time the force was used.

(c) A person who has a right to be present at the location
where the deadly force is used, who has not provoked the person
against whom the deadly force is used, and who is not engaged in
criminal activity at the time the deadly force is used is not
required to retreat before using deadly force as described by this
section.

(d) For purposes of Subsection (a)(2), in determining
whether an actor described by Subsection (c) reasonably believed
that the use of deadly force was necessary, a finder of fact may not
consider whether the actor failed to retreat.

§ 9.33. DEFENSE OF THIRD PERSON. A person is justified
in using force or deadly force against another to protect a third
person if:

(1) under the circumstances as the actor reasonably
believes them to be, the actor would be justified under Section 9.31
or 9.32 in using force or deadly force to protect himself against
the unlawful force or unlawful deadly force he reasonably believes
to be threatening the third person he seeks to protect; and

(2) the actor reasonably believes that his
intervention is immediately necessary to protect the third person.

§ 9.34. PROTECTION OF LIFE OR HEALTH.

(a)
A person is justified in using force, but not deadly force, against another when and to the degree
he reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to prevent the other from committing suicide
or inflicting serious bodily injury to himself.

(b) A person is justified in using both force and deadly
force against another when and to the degree he reasonably believes
the force or deadly force is immediately necessary to preserve the
other's life in an emergency.


§ 9.41. PROTECTION OF ONE'S OWN PROPERTY.

(a) A person in lawful possession of land or tangible, movable property is
justified in using force against another when and to the degree the
actor reasonably believes the force is immediately necessary to
prevent or terminate the other's trespass on the land or unlawful
interference with the property.

(b) A person unlawfully dispossessed of land or tangible,
movable property by another is justified in using force against the
other when and to the degree the actor reasonably believes the force
is immediately necessary to reenter the land or recover the
property if the actor uses the force immediately or in fresh pursuit
after the dispossession and:

(1) the actor reasonably believes the other had no
claim of right when he dispossessed the actor; or

(2) the other accomplished the dispossession by using
force, threat, or fraud against the actor.

§ 9.42. DEADLY FORCE TO PROTECT PROPERTY. A person is
justified in using deadly force against another to protect land or
tangible, movable property:

(1) if he would be justified in using force against the
other under Section 9.41; and

(2) when and to the degree he reasonably believes the
deadly force is immediately necessary:

(A) to prevent the other's imminent commission of
arson, burglary, robbery, aggravated robbery, theft during the
nighttime, or criminal mischief during the nighttime; or

(B) to prevent the other who is fleeing
immediately after committing burglary, robbery, aggravated
robbery, or theft during the nighttime from escaping with the
property; and

(3) he reasonably believes that:

(A) the land or property cannot be protected or
recovered by any other means; or

(B) the use of force other than deadly force to
protect or recover the land or property would expose the actor or
another to a substantial risk of death or serious bodily injury.

§ 9.43. PROTECTION OF THIRD PERSON'S PROPERTY. A person
is justified in using force or deadly force against another to
protect land or tangible, movable property of a third person if,
under the circumstances as he reasonably believes them to be, the
actor would be justified under Section 9.41 or 9.42 in using force
or deadly force to protect his own land or property and:

(1) the actor reasonably believes the unlawful
interference constitutes attempted or consummated theft of or
criminal mischief to the tangible, movable property; or

(2) the actor reasonably believes that:

(A) the third person has requested his protection
of the land or property;

(B) he has a legal duty to protect the third
person's land or property; or

(C) the third person whose land or property he
uses force or deadly force to protect is the actor's spouse, parent,
or child, resides with the actor, or is under the actor's ca
re.
 
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