SB 46 — Self-defense Circumstances Limited

Senate Bill 46 (2015), if passed, would modify IC 35-41-3-2(g) to further limit when a person is justified in using force against another in self-defense.  The proposed section would not read:

“Notwithstanding sections (c) and (e), a person is not justified in using force if one (1) or more of the following apply:

(1)  The person is committed or is escaping after the commission of a crime.

(2)  The person provokes unlawful action by another person with intent to cause bodily injury to the other person, or

(3)  The person has entered into combat with another person or is the initial aggressor, unless the person withdraws from the encounter and communicates to the other person the intent to do so and the other person nevertheless continues or threatens to continue unlawful action;

(4)  The person has reached a place of safety after escaping an attack or potential attack and then shortly thereafter: (A) returns to the location of the attack; or (B) seeks out a person involved in the attack.  However, this subdivision does not prohibit a person from using reasonable force in accordance with this section if the location to which the person has returned is the person’s property or residence, or if the person returns with the intent to protect a third person from what the person reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force.

(5)  The person is pursuing an attacker or trespasser who: (A) has withdrawn or is retreating; and (B) no longer presents an imminent threat to the person.

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