Authorities in New York are dismayed after responding to a recent fatal stabbing in Times Square, which appears to be a case of self-defense.
According to the police, the individual who was killed in the struggle was a former ex-convict. The victim, 49-year-old Guarionex Torres, reportedly frequented the area and was known to sell drugs there, too. Just earlier this month, the suspect was arrested about two blocks from the area where the recent struggle ensued. Police say they were called out to the area after witnesses reported the suspect threatening them with a hatchet.
At the time, the suspect was charged with menacing and possession of illegal weapons. Despite his arrest, he was released the same day after paying $3,500 in cash for bail.
It appears that the alleged victim continued to harass patrons in the area. During the most recent clash, a 28-year-old man says he accidentally bumped into the victim near W. 44th Street. An argument ensued, and a physical altercation resulted. The 28-year-old reportedly took out his knife and stabbed the victim repeatedly. Although the victim was quickly rushed to a nearby hospital, he passed away shortly after arriving. The suspect is charged with murder and weapons possession, but he has already told police that he committed the stabbing in self-defense.
Self Defense and Deadly Force in New York: What to Know
Everyone knows that murder is against the law, but what happens when you end up fatally striking (or stabbing) someone in defense of your own life? This type of situation is extremely complicated. It’s important for everyone in New York to understand that the law does allow for deadly self-defense in some situations.
Under New York law, a citizen is legally justified to use deadly physical force on someone else when they reasonably believe that it is necessary to defend themselves (or someone else) from equally threatening deadly force from the aggressor.
Deadly force is defined as any type of force that could cause death. “Reasonable belief” is more difficult to define, but under the law of justification, the defendant will need to show that another reasonable person, knowing what the defendant knew and being in the same circumstances, would behave in a similar way. If these conditions exist, then the defendant can use self-defense as a legal strategy to avoid criminal prosecution.
Do You Need a Criminal Defense Attorney in New York?
Have you recently been accused of a crime that you committed while defending yourself? In general, it’s legally acceptable to defend yourself with the same level of force as the aggressor, and deadly force is acceptable if your life (or the life of others) is in imminent danger. It’s best to discuss your potential defense strategy with a lawyer first before attempting to use it as a legal strategy in court, though.
Are you ready to discuss your situation in more detail with a criminal defense attorney in New York? Schedule a case evaluation with our firm now.