Justifiable homicide

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Related to Justifiable homicide: Excusable homicide

justifiable homicide

n. a killing without evil or criminal intent, for which there can be no blame, such as self-defense to protect oneself or to protect another, or the shooting by a law enforcement officer in fulfilling his/her duties. This is not to be confused with a crime of passion or claim of diminished capacity which refer to defenses aimed at reducing the penalty or degree of crime. (See: homicide, self-defense)

Copyright © 1981-2005 by Gerald N. Hill and Kathleen T. Hill. All Right reserved.

JUSTIFIABLE HOMICIDE. That which is committed with the intention to kill, or to do a grievous bodily injury, under circumstances which the law holds sufficient to exculpate the person who commits it.
     2. It is justifiable, 1. When a judge or other magistrate acts in obedience to the law. 2. When a ministerial officer acts in obedience to a lawful warrant, issued by a competent tribunal. 3. When a subaltern officer, or soldier, kills in obedience to the lawful commands of his superior. 4. When the party kills in lawful self-defence.
     3.-1. A judge who, in pursuance of his duty, pronounces sentence of death, is not guilty of homicide; for it is evident, that as the law prescribes the punishment of death for certain offences, it must protect those who are entrusted with its execution. A judge, therefore, who pronounces sentence of death, in a legal manner, on a legal indictment, legally brought before him, for a capital offence committed within his jurisdiction, after a lawful trial and conviction, of the defendant, is guilty of no offence.
     4.-2. Magistrates, or other officers entrusted with the preservation of the public peace, are justified in committing homicide, or giving orders which lead to it, if the excesses of a riotous assembly cannot be otherwise be repressed.
     5-2. An officer entrusted with a legal warrant, criminal or civil, and lawfully commanded by a competent tribunal to execute it, will be justified in committing homicide, if, in the course of advancing to discharge his duty, he be brought into such perils that, without doing so, he cannot either save his life, or discharge the duty which he is commanded by the warrant to perform. And when the warrant commands him to put a criminal to death, he is justified in obeying it.
     6.-3. A soldier on duty is justified in committing homicide, in obedience to the command of his officer, unless the command was something plainly unlawful.
     7.-4. A private individual will, in many cases, be justified in committing homicide, while acting in self-defence. See Self-defence. Vide, generally, 1 East, P. C. 219; Hawk. B. 1, c. 28, s. 1, n. 22; Alis. Prin. 126-139; 1 Russ. on Cr. 538; Bac. Ab. Murder, &c., E; 2 Wash. C. C. 515; 4 Mass. 891; 1 Hawk's R. 210; 1 Coxe's R. 424; 5 Yerg. 459; 9 C. & P. 22; S. C. 38 Eng. C. L. R. 20.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
(71) Selfridge, as Richard Singer notes, "is the first case--and certainly the first American case--to use the term 'self defense' to describe what up until that point in legal history was characterized as a justifiable prevention of felony." (72) American law near the Founding recognized a conceptual distinction between justifiable homicide and excusable homicide, just as it had been recognized in English common law.
The news accounts also showed that the Los Angeles police did not charge Samiee with murder, but accepted his self-defense argument and charged him with justifiable homicide, which does not carry the penalty of execution in either Iran or the United States.
(74) Blackstone divided homicide in self-defense into two categories: "Justifiable Homicide" and "Excusable Homicide." (75)
Essay titles include "Was Boyd Truly Born Again?" "The Crimes of Old King Coal," "Motherhood and Apple Pie," and "Raylan Learns to Restrain Himself." A last chapter discusses recent real-life homicide cases, and poses the question of what we, as a society, consider justifiable homicide. ([umlaut] Ringgold, Inc., Portland, OR)
According to the FBI's most recent accounts of "justifiable homicide," in the seven years between 2005 and 2012, a white officer used deadly force against a black person almost two times every week.
What is generally not known by the public, and either unknown or certainly not publicized by the police and other officials, is the alarming increase in the rate of deaths of male citizens caused by, in the official terminology, "legal intervention of police." These are the cases recorded on the death certificates as "justifiable homicide" by police intervention.
AWAITING news of the first coroner's inquest to return a Justifiable Homicide verdict on any man who took too literally the advice in Sainsbury's Christmas gift guide: "For Her, a Pudding Bowl..."
Some refuse to even wear animal products; some refuse cows' milk; others will consume fish, believing meat is murder, fish is justifiable homicide.
It is true, as Lowles says, that the inquest brought in verdicts of justifiable homicide.
(An inquest would return a verdict of justifiable homicide.) The deaths signalled the start of rioting and looting that lasted through the night.