CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Colorado's "Make My Day" law

An article in the Denver Post discusses it:

Introduced in 1985 as the Homeowner Protection Act, "make my day" gives Colorado residents the right to shoot and kill an intruder if they believe the person intends to commit a crime and use physical force, "no matter how slight." That extraordinary right stops at the door. Front porches and backyards don't count.

. . .

Nobody records how often "make my day" is used as a defense against criminal charges in Colorado, or how often charges are not filed based on the law. But an informal survey by Doug Wilson, the state public defender, found there have been at least 22 cases in his agency's offices in the past year in which the law was cited as a defense. Two ended with jury acquittals, two were dismissed by district attorneys, four were plea-bargained and seven others are pending.

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