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HARRISBURG, October 14, 2010 — State Sen. Richard A. Kasunic today called the state Senate’s passage of the so-called “Castle Doctrine” legislation as a victory for law-abiding citizens who defend themselves and their loved ones in their own home.
“This measure expands the provision of our law that protects the right of homeowners to use deadly force against intruders in their home and property,” Kasunic said. “I am proud to have supported the Castle Doctrine and will continue to fight for legal rights of gun owners.”
House Bill 1926 passed the Senate by a 45-4 vote. The amended measure now returns to the House of Representatives. Kasunic spoke strongly in favor of the expanded Castle doctrine on the Senate Floor.
“The expanded Castle Doctrine would help clarify the right of homeowners to protect themselves and their loved ones from intruders on their property including porches and garages,” Kasunic said. “I have heard too many horror stories about law-abiding people who used deadly force to defend themselves being wrongfully prosecuted or sued.
“When being attacked or threatened in one’s own home or property, there should be no legal expectation that someone must compromise their own safety and adhere to a vague legal retreat standard.”
Under current law, homeowners can use deadly force to defend themselves against an intruder while in their living room, dining room, den, kitchen, basement or other area within the house. In other areas, such as a garage, porch, driveway, yard or vehicle, the homeowner must first attempt to retreat from the intruder before legally using their weapon to protect themselves.
“While some may be leery about extending the castle doctrine, I believe we need to provide citizens with the right to protect themselves,” Kasunic said.
Kasunic said the bill would remove the “retreat” provision from the law and protect people from being prosecuted in many home defense scenarios that result in injury or death. He said it also strengthens presumptions on having a “reasonable belief” to use deadly force.

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