# Joe Horn and Texas Law

1. Jul 2, 2008

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus

What is your opinion on the Joe Horn case? Do you think Texas laws on gun rights are reasonable?

Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
2. Jul 2, 2008

### Chi Meson

If larceny is punishable by death, can I go after the rest of the Enron people (Ken Ley already offed himself)?

3. Jul 2, 2008

### TheStatutoryApe

This guy is just crazy. I have no idea what would possess someone to shot and kill someone just for stealing from their neighbor.

4. Jul 2, 2008

### moose

I have no idea.

Did he say "hello! You're dead" then fired 3 shots????

I've known literally hundreds of firearm owners (the largest outdoor public shooting range was 15 minutes away from my house...) and none of them were insane like this guy. Most of them dread the idea of ever having to kill someone and would only do it if they were about to get killed themselves. This guy's ridiculous.

They were shot in their BACKS. This guy should at least have a mental evaluation (maybe he did???).

5. Jul 2, 2008

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
He said: "Move, you're dead." Half a second later, they must have moved.

6. Jul 2, 2008

### Danger

Charleton Heston is probably grinning in his crypt.
This idiot's involvement should have ended at calling the police and taking notes as to descriptions, plate numbers, and the like.
He was clearly told by the 911 operator to stay out of it. It should be pretty clear to anyone that he's guilty of premeditated murder.

7. Jul 2, 2008

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
How do you say that? He was acquitted by grand jury, will not face civil trial, and has become a hero in the eyes of many southerners.

8. Jul 2, 2008

### humanino

I am shocked. I had no idea how far insanity can go in some places. It makes me feel like living this country immediately.

Can someone tell me, what is this grand jury ? Did the people who make this decision study law ? Was the fact that he is a white old grandfather versus two illegal immigrants considered to decide whether he was right to shoot them in the back on someone's else property ? If those two persons were threatening someone's else life, it would have been debatable that one can decide, on its own and against the on-call police advice, to interfere. But those two people were merely attempting to break in a house. What is the value of life reflected in this event ? Can $2000 be considered enough ?$2G ? Were those illegal immigrants less than socially worthless, explaining society's approval of a cold minded murder ?

But... in the back ? They were running backwards towards him ?

I should read the news more often...

9. Jul 2, 2008

### TheStatutoryApe

Its Texas. Same people who elected Bush as Governor.

10. Jul 2, 2008

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
No, they did not (necessarily). A grand jury is just like a regular jury of common people. The responsibility of a grand jury is to determine whether there are sufficient grounds to even try the accused in the first place. Typically, if there is even a reasonable doubt as to whether there was a crime committed the grand jury will decide to let the trial happen. For a case to be thrown out by a grand jury, they must believe that it is completely meritless and nothing but a waste of time and taxpayer money.

It's very probable. But I'm not sure whether they were on the neighbor's propoerty or were passing through his property when they were shot.

The argument is that Texas Law protects homeowners by giving them the right to shoot anyone that intrudes on their property. It is therefore the intruders' faults if they choose to devalue their own lives.

No, I think it's pretty clear that they were running away but Mr. Horn wanted them to pay with their lives.

Then you really might leave!

11. Jul 2, 2008

Staff Emeritus
Well, as mentioned, a grand jury is a collection of ordinary citizens. They are also a collection of ordinary citizens who spent hours listening to testimony, as opposed to those of us who read a few column inches in the paper. I think we have to at least consider the possibility that they know more about the situation than we do.

12. Jul 2, 2008

### humanino

I remember once, I was paying a visit to colleague of mine, late in the evening I was exhausted from a long (more than 18h) day of work. He lives in an appartement complex, all the houses are identical and next to one another. I went back to my car to pick up a book, and upon returning I confused the door, climbed the wrong stairs, and opened the neighbour's door. I faced a middle age couple eating pizza watching of television, their dog lying at their feet. I was awfully sorry, apologize as I could, and left. Joe Horn could have shot me straight into the head, because Texas' law clearly authorizes him to do so. Because I disturbed him during his football game (say) truly, but technically, because the laws says so. And he would probably have no problem to find sleep at night and look at himself in the mirror every morning.

I may know very little about the fact, but if they considered it safe to create such a jurisprudence precedent, I consider it clear for myself that Weinberg may invite me to come and work with him at the University of Austin, I'd refuse on social and ethical grounds.

13. Jul 2, 2008

### BobG

I think you have a right to protect yourself. You don't have a right to kill someone for stealing your property. In fact, there's nowhere in the US that imposes the death penalty for theft.

It's awful hard to shoot someone in the back in self defense.

I'd also require some training and a license to buy a firearm. There's a free shooting range along one of the more popular mountain roads just outside of Colorado Springs. The road eventually winds back downrange of the shooters, but nearly 1000 feet above the shooting range. This is a very safe arrangement for people with any common sense. None the less, there was a morning where I'd stopped for a break and walked around a corner and could hear bullets whistling through the air. No one is that bad of a shot! That guy was just randomly shooting into the mountains with no purpose at all. You'd normally expect at least one other person on the shooting range would have noticed, and maybe they did since it didn't go on for more than a couple minutes.

In fact, the only reason the shooting range has stayed open in spite of a horrible trash problem is to try to cut down on the crazies target shooting at any random spot along the roads and trails. It's a little unsettling to see a person's targets posted right in front of a steep dropoff. The shooters have no idea where those bullets will wind up. I just don't believe they know where every 4-wheel trail, hiking trail, or primitive campsite in the area is located - there's just too many of them. The empty cartridges left on the ground, the empty beer cans, and the empty Jack Daniels bottles just add to the feeling that there's a lot of ignorant folks out there allowed to own guns.

Joe Horn falls into the same category: the shooters that are intent on claiming their rights, but totally reject any responsibility that goes along with that right.