Virginia: Self-Defense Legislation Scheduled for House Subcommittee Consideration Tomorrow!

Posted on January 17, 2012

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Tomorrow, the Criminal Law Subcommittee of the House Courts of Justice Committee will consider four “Castle Doctrine” bills that will expand your right to defend yourself and your family in your home. “Castle Doctrine” establishes the presumption that an individual who forcibly enters one’s home, business or occupied motor vehicle is there to cause death or great bodily harm, and allows force, including deadly force, against that person. This legislation would guarantee a right thirty states have already recognized and one that needs to be realized in Virginia.

House Bill 14, sponsored by Delegate Greg Habeeb (R-8), would provide civil immunity to an occupant of a dwelling who uses any degree of physical force to defend the dwelling or another person in the dwelling.

House Bill 47, sponsored by Delegate Dickie Bell (R-20), would provide similar protections as HB 14.

House Bill 48, also sponsored by Delegate Dickie Bell (R-20), seeks to codify the "Castle Doctrine" by providing both criminal and civil liability immunity to someone who uses any degree of physical force against another person when the other person has unlawfully entered the dwelling and committed an overt act.

House Bill 925, introduced by Delegate Scott Lingamfelter (R-31), would codify a version of "Castle Doctrine” to allow the use of physical force, including deadly force, by a person in his dwelling against an intruder who has committed an overt act against him or another person in the dwelling.

Please contact members of the subcommittee listed below and respectfully urge them to support the above legislation. Contact information can be found below.

Criminal Law Subcommittee of the House Courts of Justice Committee:

Delegate Rob Bell (R-58), Chairman
Phone: (804) 698-1058
Email: DelRBell@house.virginia.gov  

Delegate Dave Albo (R-42)
Phone: (804) 698-1042
Email: DelDAlbo@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Ben Cline (R-24)
Phone: (804) 698-1024
Email: DelBCline@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Todd Gilbert (R-15)
Phone: (804) 698-1015
Email: DelTGilbert@house.virginia.gov  

Delegate Jackson Miller (R-50)
Phone: (804) 698-1015
Email: DelTGilbert@house.virginia.gov  

Delegate Ron Villanueva (R-21)
Phone: (804) 698-1021
Email: DelRVillanueva@house.virginia.gov  

Delegate Richard Morris (R-64)
Phone: (804) 698-1064
Email: DelRMorris@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Vivian Watts (D-39)
Phone: (804) 698-1039
Email: DelVWatts@house.virginia.gov

Delegate Charniele Herring (D-46)
Phone: (804) 698-1046
Email: DelCHerring@house.virginia.gov

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