Gov. Rick Perry signed into law the "castle doctrine" bill, SB 378,
that gives Texans a stronger legal right to defend themselves with deadly
force in their homes, cars and workplaces.
The bill states that a in a situation, when deadly force is justified,
person has no duty to retreat before using such force.
Perry said, "The right to defend oneself from an imminent act of harm
should not only be clearly defined in Texas law, but it is intuitive to
human nature. You ought to be able to protect yourself."
Perry added, "This is reasonable legislation."
The building or vehicle must be occupied at the time for the deadly force
provision to apply, and the person using force cannot provoke the attacker
or be involved in criminal activity at the time.
The "castle doctrine," got its name from the long standing belief that a
man's home is his castle and that he should have the right to defend it.
Texas is one of sixteen states that have passed similar laws.
The new law will also afford protection from civil liability for his act
to a person, who lawfully uses deadly force in the circumstances
enumerated in the bill.
The law will take effect September 1, 2007.