Castle doctrine

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A Castle Doctrine (also known as a Castle Law or a Defense of Habitation Law) is an American legal doctrine arising from English common law that designates one's place of residence (or, in some states, any place legally occupied, such as one's car or place of work) as a place in which one enjoys protection from illegal trespassing and violent attack. It then goes on to give a person the legal right to use deadly force to defend that place (his "castle"), and any other innocent persons legally inside it, from violent attack or an intrusion which may lead to violent attack. In a legal context, therefore, use of deadly force which actually results in death may be defended as justifiable homicide under the Castle Doctrine.

Castle Doctrines are legislated by state though not all states in the US have a Castle Doctrine law. The term "Make My Day Law" comes from the landmark 1985 Colorado statute that protects people from any criminal charge or civil suit if they use force – including deadly force – against an invader of the home. The law's nickname is a reference to a line uttered by Clint Eastwood's character Harry Callahan in the 1983 film Sudden Impact, "Go ahead, make my day." It is sometimes considered derogatory as it may be used to imply that those who assert the Castle Doctrine defense want to have to shoot their assailant. Another pejorative nickname is the term "Shoot The Milkman...
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