Marbut on Montana’s Self Defense Laws and the Rittenhouse Trial
Kyle Rittenhouse- why the jury got it right. Gary Marbut with the Montana Shooting Sports Association gave a very insightful update to his members across Montana shortly after the not guilty verdict was announced in Kenosha, Wisconsin.
He joined us on the radio to talk more about self defense laws, and what criteria needs to be met in order for it to be considered a true self defense case.
Gary Marbut: Those three criteria are that the assailant has opportunity, ability and intent. Opportunity means that the assailant is within striking distance and able to actually deliver harm. That will be different depending on how the assailant might be equipped. If he's equipped with fists and feet only, it would be a contact distance. If he's equipped with a handgun it would probably be up to 40 or 50 yards. If he's equipped with a rifle it'd be even further away. So it depends on on how the assailant is equipped whether or not he's satisfied that he has opportunity to deliver harm. The next leg of that three legged stool is ability. It is- does the assailant actually have the ability to deliver harm, and there are a number of ways that can be satisfied. It could be multiple assailants or surprise/ambush. It could be that the assailant is much larger than the defender, say a 250 pound man and 100 pound woman, that would satisfy ability. It could be that the assailant is armed with a weapon, or one of several sorts of weapons which could include hands or feet. So again, the ability leg of that three legged stool is that the assailant has the actual ability to deliver harm. Third leg is intent, that is that the assailant actually intends to deliver some harm.
Marbut says all three criteria were met in the Rittenhouse case, which is why the jury delivered a unanimous not guilty verdict.
We also talked more about Montana's gun rights and self defense laws. Here's the full audio with Gary Marbut, President of the Montana Shooting Sports Association: