New Hampshire: House Passes Shurtleff Criminal Protection Bill

Posted on March 27, 2013

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Today, the state House of Representatives undermined your inherent right to self-defense by passing House Bill 135 by a 189-184 vote.  Introduced by state Representative Stephen Shurtleff (D- Merrimack 11), HB 135 will render law-abiding citizens defenseless victims by removing consequences for criminal activity.

HB 135 would repeal important self-defense provisions enacted in 2011, making the following changes to New Hampshire’s current self-defense laws:

  1. Eliminates the provision that allows a person to use deadly force anywhere he or she has a legal right to be.  This limits an individual’s ability to defend themselves or a third party from assault to their own place of residence.
  2. Amends the definition of non-deadly force by removing the provision that specifies the act of producing or displaying a weapon is considered non-deadly force.  Thus, drawing or exhibiting your firearm to intimidate a perpetrator could be considered deadly force.
  3. Repeals the provision granting civil immunity for the use of force in certain circumstances.  The elimination of this provision removes legal protections for law-abiding citizens acting in self-defense.

Given the alarming passage of this bill in the state House, it is imperative that you contact your state Senator TODAY.  Let your state Senator know that HB 135 is a step in the wrong direction for New Hampshire, and will put you and your loved ones at risk.  Ask your state Senator whether they plan to vote for the rights of law-abiding citizens or criminals when this bill is considered by the state Senate.

Click here for contact information and help identifying your state Senator in Concord.

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