>>10119>If I see a mass shooter executing an innocent person in public, aren't I morally justified in attacking him and trying to take his weapon?
How does that relate to Kyle's situation? It wasn't a mass shooting (less than 4 people were killed), and neither Joseph Rosenbaum nor Anthony Huber were innocent. Rosenbaum assaulted Kyle, chasing him, throwing an object in a plastic bag at him, and lunging for his rifle. Anthony Huber intentionally swung his skateboard at Kyle's head (quite capable of being deadly force) and grabbed his rifle.
But to answer your question anyway: It depends. Consider California's citizen's-arrest statute, which is representative of most US states:
A private person may arrest another:
- For a public offense committed or attempted in his/her presence.
- When the person arrested has committed a felony, although not in his/her presence.
- When a felony has been in fact committed, and he or she has reasonable cause for believing the person arrested to have committed it.
Strict liability is imposed on you if you mistakenly arrest someone if no crime had been committed. That implies a moral judgement that you are justified in arresting someone only if you're damned certain that a crime had actually been committed.>Were the Columbine shooters engaged in self-defense when other students tried to take their weapons as they moved from room to room?
Someone in the process of committing a violent felony legally forfeits the right of self-defense.