Expert and Consulting Witness
firearms • ballistics • use of force • self-defense claims
Dynamics of Violent Encounters
Michigan Self-defense Law Seminars
*We are NOT a legal firm nor do we give legal advice*
Areas of Expertise
Use of Deadly Force
The use of deadly force should always be a tool of last resort. Michigan law allows the use of deadly force when the person is not in the commission of a crime; in a place they have a legal right to be; and have an honest and reasonable belief that the force used is to prevent imminent death, great bodily harm, or sexual assault. However, your defense doesn't stop there. You must be able to articulate all five elements of self-defense (Innocence, Imminence, Proportionality, Avoidance, & Reasonableness) to the jury in order to prove your actions were justified.
When the unthinkable happens, you want an expert to consult and testify on your behalf, especially if the evidence shows the use of deadly force was justified and you are tried unjustly.
Many factors can be present in a justified use of deadly force case. The reasonable person doctrine, the factors of ability, opportunity, and jeopardy coupled with disparity of force issues, are tantamount to the defense of a justified use of force case.
External ballistics deals with the projectile after it leaves the muzzle of the gun. Shot trajectory, shot angle, number of shots fired, and ammunition use are all part of external ballistics. These factors can help prove a defendants case when aided by reconstruction experts.
Firearm identification extends beyond simply identifying make and model. Trigger pull, operation, safety features, and functional issues are all part and parcel of firearm identification.
ARMED SECURITY PROFESSIONAL (ASP)
The Armed Security Professional has a thankless job. They must be the eyes and ears of those in their mantle of protection yet they are typically not sworn law enforcement. This means Armed Security Professionals fall under the rules of civilian engagement when facing possible encounters of lethal and non-lethal use of force. Additionally, many ASP's do not receive adequate training to perform the functions of their job. This places the ASP in a precarious position whereby the services of an expert could be of prime importance in a use of deadly force case.
PROFESSIONAL PROCESS SERVER
Professional process servers are officers of the court who are not LEO or sworn court officers. They face threats that are common to LEO and, due to the number and type of cases served, the process server can be exposed to sudden threats and violent reactions by the people they are attempting to serve. Similar to the Armed Security Professional, the Professional Process Server is acting under the civilian rules of engagement when it comes to deadly force, or the use of less-than-deadly force. Many times, process servers must work in high crime areas and can be exposed to an unwelcome and violent element.
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