State v. Ghiloni

In State v. Ghiloni, 35 Conn. Supp. 570, 398 A.2d 1204 (1978), the defendant witnessed from the window of his third-floor apartment two men savagely beating a third individual on the sidewalk below. State v. Ghiloni, supra, 35 Conn. Supp. 572. The defendant yelled at the assailants to no avail. Id. He then retrieved his handgun and returned to the window, only to find that the assault had ended and the assailants were walking away. Id. The defendant ordered the assailants to stop. Id. When they did not stop, the defendant fired his gun in their general vicinity, at which time the assailants ran to a waiting vehicle and sped away. Id. The local police received two calls that day, one reporting a fight and a second from a gunshot victim. Id. "After an investigation the police concluded that the two incidents were related." Id. The defendant was charged with reckless endangerment in the first degree and subsequently was convicted of the lesser included offense of reckless endangerment in the second degree. Id., 571. At trial and on appeal, the defendant asserted "a citizen's common-law right to effect an arrest or to prevent an escape of one whom he has observed committing a felony or a misdemeanor." Id., 574. Although the appellate session of the Superior Court agreed with the defendant's general statement of the right, it nonetheless concluded that such right precluded the use of deadly physical force. Id., 574-75.