A ruling of self-defense or justifiable homicide has come up about five to 10 times throughout Assistant District Attorney Chester Cedars’ nearly four decade career in law.
“Most of the time the killing has proven not to be justified. Most of the time,” said Cedars.
Without knowing the facts of the case, Cedars said, the unidentified Lafayette homeowner, who fatally shot alleged Lafayette burglar Ramsey Demouchet on Sunday, may have to prove to a grand jury that in the moment he was in danger of great bodily harm or death.
“You have to consider…was the person that used the deadly force lawfully within the confines of a dwelling place of business or motor vehicle?…and whether the use of that force was reasonably necessary to prevent someone from unlawfully entering the premises and or necessary to compel the intruder to leave the premises,” said Cedars.
According to Lafayette Police reports, the homeowner was not inside the house when 46-year-old Demouchet entered. Instead, he was standing across the street from his house and watched Demouchet go into his house.
The homeowner allegedly grabbed a gun, walked across the street, and fired two times into the house through a window. He then allegedly fired two more shots once Demouchet ran out of the house.
Police and neighbors would later find Demouchet’s lifeless body in the backyard.
The coroner’s report has yet to be released, but cedars said, where the bullets struck him and where he was standing, could also make a difference.
“You have to look at the circumstances under which the deadly force was used. But it is a factor you would look at,” said Cedars.