State v. BarlettAnnotate this Case
A defendant may not assert self-defense if that defendant is already otherwise committing a forcible felony when he or she commits a separate act of violence.
The Supreme Court affirmed Defendant’s conviction of criminal discharge of a firearm into a vehicle under a theory of aiding and abetting, holding that there was no basis for reversal. The primary issue on appeal was whether the district court erred in denying Defendant’s request for an instruction on self-defense. The court of appeals held that the instruction was legally inappropriate in this case because Defendant was charged with a violent felony, which prevented him from asserting a theory of self-defense. The Supreme Court disagreed, holding that under the new rule articulated above, the requested instruction was legally appropriate. But because the evidence was not factually appropriate, the district court properly denied Defendant’s request for an instruction on self-defense. The Supreme Court further held that Defendant’s remaining allegations of error were unavailing.