With the UK police now abandoning inquiries into theft, burglary and antisocial behavior in minutes if there are no clues.
With a response to a 999 (911) call sounding more like the preppers pet question:-
What you going to do if you dial 999 (911) and nobody comes?
Vigilante. A member of a self-appointed group of citizens who undertake law enforcement in their community without legal authority, typically because the legal agencies are thought to be inadequate.
That’s good to know because if I’m not a member of a self-appointed group of citizens, I can’t be a vigilante. Yet there is a thing called vigilante justice.
The ever so polite dictionary calls it:- justice, done violently and summarily, without recourse to lawful procedures.
Most folk would simply call that street justice aka instant punishment to criminals or wrongdoers.
Yet if you are at home and under attack, and stupid enough to live in the UK, just how far can you go to defend yourself and others.
What is ‘reasonable force’?
Anyone can use reasonable force to protect themselves or others, or to carry out an arrest or to prevent crime. You are not expected to make fine judgements over the level of force you use in the heat of the moment. So long as you only do what you honestly and instinctively believe is necessary in the heat of the moment, that would be the strongest evidence of you acting lawfully and in self-defence. This is still the case if you use something to hand as a weapon. As a general rule, the more extreme the circumstances and the fear felt, the more force you can lawfully use in self-defence.
Do I have to wait to be attacked?
No, not if you are in your own home and in fear for yourself or others. In those circumstances the law does not require you to wait to be attacked before using defensive force yourself.
What if I chase them as they run off?
This situation is different as you are no longer acting in self-defence and so the same degree of force may not be reasonable. However, you are still allowed to use reasonable force to recover your property and make a citizen’s arrest.
You should consider your own safety and, for example, whether the police have been called. A rugby tackle or a single blow would probably be reasonable. Acting out of malice and revenge with the intent of inflicting punishment through injury or death would not.
As for setting traps within your home?
According to the Crown Prosecution Service, a householder who “knew of an intended intruder and set a trap to hurt or kill them rather than involve the police would be acting with very excessive and gratuitous force and could be prosecuted.”