(e) A person who has a right to be present at the location where the force is used, who has not provoked the person against whom the force is used, and who is not engaged in criminal activity at the time the force is used is not required to retreat before using force as described by this section.
No duty to retreat. LI argues, in fact, that not only did she have no duty, she had no real opportunity. I’m not sure I agree — we’d have to see the layout of the gas station, whether she could have made it inside to where the attendant was, whether she could have made it safely inside the car and driven away before he got the door open, etc — but the point is moot. In Texas, if a man swings at you with a knife, you’re entitled to protect yourself by pulling your gun.
Three points. One: Whether or not a duty to retreat would have prevented the shooting, it might very well have cost her her car. If she had run off, all the attacker had to do was get in and drive away. That’s one of the points of SYG laws — why create an incentive for miscreants to intimidate innocent people into fleeing a scene by forcing them to run when violence is threatened? Two: Although I’m skeptical that any jury would be a stickler about the duty to retreat in a case of sexual assault, the respective genders of assailant and shooter here illustrate why SYG can in some situations be especially useful to women. If a man steps out from the bushes in front of a woman on an isolated path at night, brandishing a knife, and tells her to get undressed, in theory she’d be required in a “duty to retreat” jurisdiction to run if she has the opportunity, even if she has a gun in hand. Would any jury convict her if she decided to stand her ground and shoot the bastard right there? Almost certainly not, but that’s because even people in DTR jurisdictions recognize the injustice of making a victim take a needless risk in a dangerous situation. Three: Er, what’s going on here with the woman pausing after the shooting to take photos? The news station’s legal expert says she likely won’t be charged, which is true, but if I’m the prosecutor I’d want to know more about that. Very strange.