Saturday, September 09, 2006

Self-Defence brought to a whole new level

This will be an interesting addition to the discussion Nate and I have been having over self-defense and conceal and carry. A nurse in Oregon came home to find an intruder and the two grappled violently. The end result...she strangled him to death.

A 51-year-old woman strangled an intruder in her southeast Portland home Wednesday evening, police said.

Susan Kuhnhausen returned home from work and found an intruder inside her house, said officer Catherine Kent with the Portland Police Bureau.

"A violent struggle ensued, resulting in the death of the intruder and non life-threatening injuries to Kuhnhausen," Kent said.

The homeowner was transported by ambulance to a local hospital.

Officers arrived at the house in the 7900 block of Southeast Alder Street. about 6:50 p.m. and discovered the body of 59-year-old Edward Dalton Haffey inside, Kent said.

On Thursday the Multnomah County Medical Examiner performed an autopsy, which determined the cause of death to be strangulation. The Medical Examiner ruled the death a homicide.

Initial reports indicated someone had made a 9-1-1 call to report the intruder.

According to neighbors, the woman is a full-time nurse. They said she struck the intruder with a hammer.

While trying to find news articles about this incident, I accidently found more. Ironically, she was listed in this article about heathcare worker safety:

Being a nurse is a dangerous job -- just ask 30-year veteran Susan Kuhnhausen.

The registered nurse has been punched in the face and bitten by patients, and once watched an enraged motorist drive his car though the wall of the hospital into the her emergency department after his girlfriend opted not to leave the hospital with him.

In other words, the intruder walked into the wrong house and messed with the wrong nurse.

As to Nate and I's continuing debate, here we have a situation that was resolved in a manner that I am not opposed to (she hit him with a hammer and strangled him to death). Here my arguement into self-defense has the same basic principles as a situation with CCWs: the criminal threatened the life of the individual in question. The victim fought back. The only difference is instead of 2 shots center-mass, she moved into outright hand-to-hand combat. In both situations, you must stop the


Blogger Nate said...

Or perhaps this woman could have run as soon as she found the person in her house and called the cops and let them take care of the situation. It is, afterall, their job to deal with criminals. Unless the home owner is in the habit of carrying around a hammer, she had time to go look for a weapon to use on him. If she had time to go do that, she had not yet been detected by the intruder. If she hadn't been detected, she could have gone back out of the house and phoned for help. Instead she went and found a hammer and hunted him down.

I don't have a problem with hitting him in the head with a hammer to knock him out if he saw her and threatened her and she happened to see a hammer laying there and hit him. Heck, if I were in that exact situation, I would be knocking the guys teeth out. But the cause of death was strangulation. Last I knew a hammer didn't cause strangulation.

Strangulation is caused, in general, when one person overpowers another and chokes them with some form of a weapon, whether it be a rope, their hands or whatever until death occurs. If she was able to overpower this guy long enough to strangulate him he was obviously dazed from being whacked with the hammer. If that is the case,she could have escaped and called police and let them do their jobs. Instead she decided to take the law into her own hands and went ahead and stragulated him. An intruder getting killed by a gun or knife by someone protecting themselves I can see, but strangulation?! Strangulation is not a defensive type thing, it is an agressive type thing. I person might say, "he came at me and I pulled out my gun and fired before I knew what happened" but you can't really say, "he came at me so I took off my shoe lace and strangulated him before I knew what happened."

With a gun you dont have time between the firing and the time the bullet hits the mark to decide maybe you should stop. With strangulation you have the opportunity to stop before death occurs.

In this situation the threatened became the aggressor. The Medical Examiner is correct to rule this a homocide.

I am sure that they can use a good, experienced nurse in prison to help clean up wounds after cat fights. If nothing else, "nurse at state prison for 10 to life" will look good on a resume'.

12 September, 2006 14:12  

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