Thursday, October 25, 2012

Montana's 'Castle Doctrine' Law

At the New York Times, "'Castle' Law at Issue After Fatal Montana Shooting":
Heather Fredenberg, 22, said she and Dan [Fredenberg] were passionate about each other, but also bickered about child care, bills, fixing the car and other stresses amplified by having two infants and not enough time or money. The county attorney’s report said they were “mutually abusive with each other, both verbally and physically.” More than once they considered divorcing.

About three months before the shooting, Ms. Fredenberg started seeing Mr. [Brice] Harper. She has called it a flirtation and an “emotional affair” that was intimate but never sexual. She told her husband about the relationship, and the two men once clashed at Fatt Boys Bar & Grille in Kalispell.

Although Ms. Fredenberg said she and her husband were committed to each other despite everything, Mr. Fredenberg’s father said his son believed the marriage was breaking apart. The day before he died, he told his father, “I’m giving up on it. I just can’t put up with it anymore,” his father said.

On Sept. 22, Mr. Harper called Ms. Fredenberg and asked a favor: He was moving out of town the next day, and could she come over and help him clean the house? She took her 18-month-old twin boys and spent the afternoon at his home, a five-minute drive from hers. She swapped tense text messages with Mr. Fredenberg and talked on the phone around 8:30 p.m. He asked whether she was with Mr. Harper. She said she did not answer. He cursed and hung up.

As she was strapping her sons into their car seats and getting ready to leave, she said, she asked Mr. Harper to circle the block with her to diagnose a clunking sound in her car. As they drove, she saw headlights in her rearview mirror. Her husband had come looking for her, and he was behind them.

Ms. Fredenberg said she dropped Mr. Harper off at his house and told him to go inside and lock the doors. She said he told her that he had a gun and was not afraid of her husband. Mr. Fredenberg, close behind, parked his car and followed Mr. Harper into his garage, its light spilling onto the driveway.
Read it all at the link.

And at Althouse, "The NYT attempts an anecdotal argument against the law that lets you defend yourself in your home."