Marti Oakley           Copyright 2012 All Rights Reserved


In December of 2011, the Indiana Supreme Court issued a ruling so clearly unconstitutional, and one which was an outright assault on Constitutional protections and rights, that Indiana’s legislature passed a bill to void that ruling.  Governor Mitch Daniels signed the bill in March of 2012.  The new Indiana bill amends the 2006 Castle Doctrine bill.  This doctrine validates the right of citizens to protect themselves using deadly force to stop illegal entry into their homes or cars, allowing them to self-defend even against unlawful acts of law enforcement.

Indiana‘s original “2006 Castle Doctrine” met with overwhelming, bipartisan support, passing 44-5 in the Senate and 81-10 in the House.  The 2012 amendment to the 2006 Castle Doctrine was a result of the opinions issued last year by the Supreme’s in Indiana. The entire state nearly hurled at once behind this decision that included these statements:

“In sum, we hold that in Indiana the right to reasonably resist an unlawful police entry into a home is no longer recognized under Indiana law.” Indiana Supreme Court Justice Steven David said,

We believe however that a right to resist an unlawful police entry into a home is against public policy and is incompatible with modern Fourth Amendment jurisprudence.”

Does it make you wonder if this justice realized that he was acknowledging the unlawful (criminal) activity of law enforcement when he stated that the citizens no longer could defend themselves from these unlawful activities?

Indiana’s state government responded by amending the 2006 Castle Doctrine, reaffirming the right of citizens to self-defense to include specifically when law enforcement is acting unlawfully and is threatening bodily harm, or unlawful trespass under color of law, or no law at all.

From: Second Regular Session 117th General Assembly (2012)

           SENATE ENROLLED ACT No. 1

AN ACT to amend the Indiana Code concerning criminal law and procedure.

(b) As used in this section, “public servant” means a person described in IC 35-41-1-17, IC 35-31.5-2-129, or IC 35-31.5-2-185.
(c) A person is justified in using reasonable force against another any other person to protect the person or a third person from what the person reasonably believes to be the imminent use of unlawful force.


The balance of the amendment is brief and to the point.  Circumstances as described by the Indiana Supreme Court, written to include exigent circumstances meant that even if the actions taken by law enforcement were beyond any sense of reasonableness, even if those circumstances were totally uncalled for, the citizen had no right to defend himself.  To do so was not in line with the new “modern” interpretation of the Fourth Amendment.

The statement by justice Steven David to the effect that “modern” Fourth Amendment jurisprudence was incompatible with defending against unlawful entry makes me ask: Incompatible with what public policy?  Where is the new and improved public policy that says law enforcement can unreasonably and without cause, due process and without penalty, terrorize you in your home threatening you and possibly your family?

Militarization of law enforcement

The militarization of local law enforcement has alarm bells going off across the country.  With the exceptions of sheriff’s, who are elected by the public, law enforcement is now under Homeland Security and now considered a para- military force.  Being trained by HSD and military counterparts, numerous local law enforcement agencies have become menaces to their respective communities.  Many agencies are now using military tanks, drones and weapons as they morph from public servants to militarized units capable and willing to do great harm.

While psychological tests have been given to applicants for law enforcement for decades, in the past these tests were used to weed out potential risks that might not be readily apparent in the individual.  These days, the psychological evaluation is to help the police department hire people who are psychologically suitable for the position of militarized police officer.  With the growing violence and maliciousness of law enforcement agencies across the country, one has to wonder just what that criteria is.

The response of the State of Indiana to the unconstitutional and clearly malicious ruling of their own supreme court is being echoed in several other states.  With the rise in violence committed under the color of law by several law enforcement agencies, several states have enacted Castle Doctrines, preserving the right of the individual to defend themselves against arbitrary, unreasonable and violent acts of aggression committed even by law enforcement.

The objections from law enforcement personnel over passage of these kinds of bills in the states is reflected in a statement from the president of the Indiana Sheriff’s Association:

“I’m not worried about the law-abiding citizens, It’s the ones that really don’t understand the law and they just think, ‘Cop shows up at my door, I can do whatever I want to him.’

Most law enforcement officers are not concerned these days with “law-abiding citizens”.  In fact, they don’t care if you are law abiding or not.

We want our law enforcement agencies back!

Most of the public is still striving to hold their law enforcement officers in high esteem, giving them the respect they desire.  But that respect is earned and cannot be achieved by violating rights, breaking into homes, terrorizing the public and violating basic civil rights without due process or evidence of wrong-doing.   Police brutality, which is becoming all too frequent, is well documented.  Military weapons, gear and uniforms on the streets of America does not inspire respect, but rather, fear and anger.  We are not awed by the fire power or the realization that at any moment this same law enforcement agency could turn on us for any reason or no reason at all.

The “I can do whatever I want to him” mentality is the very one that is expressed by too many in law enforcement these days.

We need to reclaim our local law enforcement agencies as belonging to us, to our communities and end the Be afraid!adversarial stance created by HSD.  We pay these people’s salaries, they come from our communities.  We need to bring them back to being part of our communities instead of being separated from us by edicts from an unelected bureaucracy like HSD.  Until this happens, the Castle Doctrines will continue to roll out across the country as state governments move to preserve and protect our right to self defense, even against arbitrary and misguided court rulings and rogue law enforcement.

You cannot claim the intent to enforce the law when you are simultaneously breaking the law, or many laws, yourself.  Even if you have a badge or a black robe on.


Castle Doctrines Passed

States with strong Castle Doctrine and stand-your-ground laws include: Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Montana, Nevada, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Utah, and Washington.