Want to watch this video? Sign up for the course here. Or enter your email below to watch one free video.

Unlock This Video Now for FREE

This video is normally available to paying customers.
You may unlock this video for FREE. Enter your email address for instant access AND to receive ongoing updates and special discounts related to this topic.

So if a situation has reached a point where all other avenues of de-escalation, diffusion and calming have not worked and no other approaches can be used, you must decide when the use of force is necessary.

The use of force is an action of last resort and is not suitable for behaviour management strategies. The emphasis should be on managing incidents and behaviour through non-physical, non- threatening, aggression free strategies. Physical intervention should only be considered in order to control situations involving imminent danger to individuals, staff or to others.

As the law stands, if you hurt someone while defending yourself, or while preventing a crime, you won’t be prosecuted, even if you kill. So long as you did what was Reasonable in the Circumstances. Physical Force should be the absolute last resort in managing conflict.

Physical force should only be used for its lawful purpose and not for; Revenge; Retaliation; Retribution or for Teaching people a lesson.

Section 3 of the Criminal Law Act 1967 provides that:
“A person may use such force as is reasonable in the circumstances in the prevention of crime, or in effecting or assisting in the lawful arrest of offenders or suspected offenders or of persons unlawfully at large.

The use of Reasonable Force has 2 primary points, being was it Necessary and was it Proportionate.
Necessary is if it is recognised that a person defending himself cannot decide the exact measure of his necessary defensive action.

If a jury thought that in a moment of unexpected anguish a person who had been attacked had only done what he honestly and instinctively thought was necessary, that would be potent evidence to them that reasonable defensive action had been taken.

Also the use of force against the person may be justified or excused in law if the force was reasonably used in the defence of certain public or private interests.

Proportionate is the standard of PROPORTIONALITY best defined in terms of what is reasonably proportionate to the amount of harm likely to be suffered by the defendant or what is likely to result if the forcible intervention is not made.
Previously, one of the most technical but most significant elements in the common law of self-defence was the duty to retreat. This duty has now disappeared as such but it was rephrased as a duty to demonstrate an unwillingness to fight ‘to temporise and disengage and perhaps to make some physical withdrawal.

The key question is whether a person was acting in self-defence or in revenge or retaliation. Evidence that a person was attempting to retreat or withdraw from the area might negate the suggestion of revenge.