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A bill would make it legal for a person to shoot and kill someone who unlawfuly enters their home.

February 28, 2006
By: Amy Becker
State Capital Bureau

A man's home is his castle. Lawmakers focused on this saying at while debating a bill that would protect give people the legal authority to kill an intruder.

Amy Becker has more from the state capitol.

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A bill would make it legal for a person to shoot and kill someone who unlawfully enters their home.

The bill also protects the person against lawsuits that could be brought by the criminal if they are harmed.

Representative Marylin Ruestman, the bill's sponsor, says the lawsuits brought against people defending themselves from an attacker are ridiculous and unnecessary.

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Contents: "Being the mother bear that I am I would never desert my cubs. I could not believe that I would be asked under Missouri law to retreat when there is an intruder in my home, when my children or grandchildren might be in the next room."

Ruestman says people need to be able to protect themselves from intruders.

From Jefferson City, I'm Amy Becker

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A bill would make it legal for someone to attack and kill an intruder in their home.

Reporting from Jefferson City is Amy Becker.

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Lawmakers heard testimony on a bill that would make people who harm or kill an unlawful intruder in their home immune from lawsuits.

One of the witnesses, Adam Peatry of Kansas City, whose father was sued after defending himself against a burgler in his own home, says the bil is necessary.

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Contents: "It's out of control that my family might be held liable for someone robbing us. Even if they just slipped on the stairs going up the steps to the duplex to hurt the children that weren't home upstairs. We could be sued for them falling down the stairs."

A lawsuit can still be filed but the bill would be used as a self defense judgement forcing the judge to dismiss the lawsuit.

From the state capitol, I'm Amy Becker.

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House Representatives debated a bill in the Special Committee on General Laws that would allow people to kill an intruder and protects them from being sued.

Amy Becker has more from the state capitol.

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Attorney Kevin Jamison spoke in favor of the bill and told lawmakers a huge amount of money is wasted each time someone is sued for defending themselves or a family member.

He says the only protection people have against these lawsuits at the current moment is not being able to afford attorney fees.

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Contents: "You can protect your citizens from lawsuits, from criminals, lawsuits filed from jail, by adopting this bill."

Jamison say this bill would stop the real victims from being criminalized.

Reporting from Jefferson City, I'm Amy Becker.