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Texas Law Shield in Summary
Whether you have to use your gun in self-defense, defense of the third party, defense of property, then we are the lawyers that handle that case,” said Michele Byington, one of eight attorneys with Texas Law Shield.
For a monthly fee of $10.95 a month, the pre-paid legal service pitches itself as peace of mind for the responsible gun owner.
there had been several people who have had to use deadly force and have killed perpetrators — and they’re not trigger happy people. It can be anyone; the grandpa or grandma down the street, it’s not gun-toting people who are just quick on the trigger, not at all. It’s the last resort that these people find themselves in a dire situation.
Texas Law Shield began after the wrap-up of the Joe Horn case. In 2007, the Pasadena man shot and killed two men believed to have burglarized his neighbors home. Saying he fired out of fear for his life and property, Horn was no billed and the shooting ruled a justifiable use of deadly force.
When you have to use deadly force, you are judged on what’s called a ‘reasonable standard. Now, reasonable is not a defined term, it is whether the jury thinks it’s reasonable and it is those 12 people who will determine whether you were justified in using deadly force, so it is not cut and dry whatsoever.
The horrific mass shooting at an Orlando gay nightclub touched off a flurry of phone calls to the Law Shield service that covers members in all 50 states. The question on the minds of many: What if a so-called “good guy” with a gun had been there to stop the shooter? Places like nightclubs are recognized as soft targets because guns are usually prohibited inside. Yet, in Texas, something called the “defense of necessity” might cover a so-called “good guy.”
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The argument would be look, jury, that individual broke the law of unlawful carry, absolutely. But think about what would have happened if he didn’t, and that’s the argument and I don’t know if that’s a winning argument.
Texas Law Shield has not yet represented a client in a major case of active shooter defense of necessity though Byington admits it could be a possibility in the future. The company’s membership has grown from just a few thousand to now nearly 200,000 since the company began in 2008.
If you were to decide to go rough and go hold up a 7-Eleven, the Texas Law Shield is not going to represent you. The Texas Law Shield covers only legal gun owners.
Texas Firearms Act
The Texas Firearms Act regulates the sale, possession, and use of firearms and ammunition in the US state of Texas.
The Texas Department of Public Safety may issue a license to carry a handgun to an eligible person. The permit allows the concealed or open carrying of a handgun. Vehicle transportation is permitted without a permit if the firearm is not displayed. Texas has state pre-emption over gun laws, so local governments cannot restrict or further regulate the possession or use of guns. Texas does not restrict NFA guns that are legally owned under federal law. The state does not require background checks for private sales of firearms. In 2020, more than 1.3 million firearms were sold in the state of Texas.
Black powder pistols and long guns are not considered firearms in the state of Texas and may be freely carried, opened, or concealed without permission or prejudice.
Texan Civil immunity
Two Texas Civil Practice And Remedies Code statutes protect people who rightly use firearms. Chapter 86 prohibits a person convicted of a misdemeanor or felony from bringing an action to recover damages suffered as a result of the criminal act or any justifiable action taken by others to prevent the indictable offense or apprehending the person, including shooting a weapon.
Chapter 83 of the same code states that a person who has used force or lethal force against an individual who is justified under Chapter 9 of the TPC is exempt from liability for bodily injury or death of the individual against whom force was used. It does not relieve a person of responsibility for using force or lethal force against a person against whom force would not be justified, such as a spectator hit by a lost ball.
This law does not prevent a person from being prosecuted for the use of lethal force. The civil court will determine whether the defendant was justified under Chapter 9 of the Penal Code, but the civil court will generally be found in ordinary law by previous decisions of a criminal court under the principles of res judicata and Stare decisis, as far as these legal doctrines will apply to the case.
How are the weapons classified?
Weapons are divided into four categories, which go from A to D. “Weapons are classified into 4 categories according to how dangerous they are. The dangerous nature of a firearm is assessed according to the methods of firing repetition and the number of shots fired.
Category A weapons (burst assault rifles, grenade launchers, etc.) are strictly reserved for soldiers, only when they are on a mission. They are subject to special authorization, in particular during filming. An actor can have, within the framework of shooting, weapons of war that fire blank. These guns must be rented from a licensed gunsmith. If the weapons are used in public space, the police must be informed beforehand.
Category B weapons (subject to authorization), which do not fire in a burst unlike category A, mainly concern agents who guarantee public order. On duty, police officers, gendarmes, customs officers, and other security trades (money couriers, RATP or SNCF agents, etc.) may be equipped with semi-automatic pistols, shotguns, or electric guns (Taser). Exceptional offices are used by individuals (with no criminal records) exposed to risks (traders, magistrates, etc.). They can request authorization to acquire such weapons (with a maximum of 50 cartridges) from the prefecture or of the Ministry of the Interior. The licensees of shooting clubs can also apply for it and obtain the
Category C weapons (subject to declaration) are reserved for hunting and sport shooting (hunting rifles, rifles, or pistols with rubber bullets). They are generally semi-automatic or manual repeating rifles, the projectile of which has a diameter of less than 20 mm. With their ammunition, they must be declared to the prefecture. To acquire it, you must present a hunting license or a sports club license to the gunsmith. The owner of the weapons must unload them in his home and when transporting them.
Category D weapons are either over the counter (with some restrictions, particularly concerning the sale to minors) or subject to a simple registration procedure. OTC, this is weapons-grade D2: brass knuckles, knives (batons, daggers, etc.) firearms white, historical weapons whose model was developed before 1 st January 1900 (Colts ), etc. Subject to registration, these are category D1 weapons (i.e. the least powerful of hunting rifles, with a smoothbore and single-shot per barrel, and their ammunition).