The jury will deliberate based on the police reports and RO's testimony, as well as what the prosecution, coroner and defense tell them. The 1st shot is far less important than the shot which actually ends the subject's life. Unless they are one in the same.
SD shooting is about shooting to stop the BG from doing the bad thing. It is not about killing. Killing is a by product associated with the use of deadly force, but it is not a certainty. If a person applying deadly force has been known to spout bravado filled statements or has a history of aggressive or violent behavior they could face a more difficult time in court. Something the jury will certainly be made aware of by over-zealous, ignorant or unscrupulous prosecutors.
Surviving the deadly force encounter is certainly the primary goal. However, it can be done in such a manner as to be able to survive the criminal and civil liabilities as well. I'm not advocating a compromise of either tactics or the aggressiveness of one's actions. What I am saying is that it is important to balance what we do before and after the DF encounter with what we do during the encounter.
Things like finely tuned or specialized trigger mechanisms, excessive use of force or braggadocio will certainly come back to haunt a person should they find themselves in an untenable courtroom situation. My question here is why compound the situation? Why talk smack? Why do things to your weapon that would be difficult for a layman to understand?
i.e., A person changes the grips on their sidearm to make it more controllable...Easy for the layman to understand.
Alternatively; A person installed a trigger mechanism which give the shooter better feel for the reset and reduced the amount of pressure required to activate the mechanism...What the layman may hear with help from the prosecutor, is that the the trigger was altered to make it lighter and thus more dangerous. They could even go so far as to say the end user did so with malicious intent.
Why make things more difficult for yourself when you could do many things to mitigate your risks while still being able to effectively defend yourself?
Certainly a person should exercise their best judgement while in the moment. That person should also be ready to justify every round discharged from their weapon(s). The police, the lawyers and the media will demand that you articulate why you pressed every shot. If a shooter fails to do so, no matter how well justified in the criminal courts, they may still pay a dear price in the civil courts.
Be ready to use as much force as you deem necessary while in the moment, but be prepared to answer to all the Monday morning quarterback's questions.
One last point: The old time bravado filled statements may have been acceptable in the time when they were coined, but contemporary society is far less willing to accept them as anything but "gun-nut," rhetoric. We can thank the "evolution" of our society as a whole and the media for that one.
FWIW: Use such statements at your own risk and peril.
I'm more fond of..."it is better to remain silent and be thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt." Information which is not provided cannot be used against you.
Last edited by NS2; 04-17-2011 at 10:07.