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NCJ Number: 119345 Find in a Library
Title: Criminal Law -- Lovers and Other Strangers: Or, When Is a House a Castle? -- Privilege of Non-Retreat in the Home Held Inapplicable to Legal Co-Occupants -- State V. Bobbitt, 415 SO.2D 724 (FLA. 1982) (From Representing...Battered Women Who Kill, P 237-257, 1989, Sara Lee Johann and Frank Osanka --
Author(s): T Katheder
Date Published: 1989
Page Count: 21
Sponsoring Agency: Charles C. Thomas
Springfield, IL 62704
Sale Source: Charles C. Thomas
2600 South First Street
Springfield, IL 62704
United States of America
Type: Legislation/Policy Analysis
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: The castle doctrine on cohabitation is considered in relation to the Florida Supreme Court's decision in State v. Bobbitt, a case in which Bobbitt violently attacked his wife in their home and was fatally shot by her in response.
Abstract: Elsie Bobbitt was charged with second degree murder, and the jury found her guilty of manslaughter. The trial court initially refused Mrs. Bobbitt's request to instruct the jury that, according to the castle doctrine, she had no duty to retreat from her home before justifiably using deadly force in self-defense. Instead, the trial court charged the jury on the general duty to retreat in the face of an unlawful attack. After a motion for a new trial was granted, the judge agreed that the jury should have been given instruction on the privilege of nonretreat in the home, in accordance with Florida case law. The Florida Supreme Court ruled that the castle doctrine is not applicable to situations where on legal co-occupant of a dwelling attacks another. The court stated that the original purpose of the castle doctrine applied only to attacks upon the home by external aggressors. The invitee/legal co-occupant property line drawn by the court may cause confusion and future litigation in view of contemporary lifestyles and living arrangements. The castle doctrine's history in English and American law is reviewed. 93 references.
Main Term(s): Legal remedies for battered women
Index Term(s): Battered wives; Florida; Self defense
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