2007 ORS 161.209¹
Use of physical force in defense of a person

Except as provided in ORS 161.215 (Limitations on use of physical force in defense of a person) and 161.219 (Limitations on use of deadly physical force in defense of a person), a person is justified in using physical force upon another person for self-defense or to defend a third person from what the person reasonably believes to be the use or imminent use of unlawful physical force, and the person may use a degree of force which the person reasonably believes to be necessary for the purpose. [1971 c.743 §22]

Notes of Decisions

This sec­tion is not inconsistent with ORS 161.260 (Use of physical force in resisting arrest prohibited), prohibiting use of physical force in resisting arrest, and rule is that per­son is not justified in forcibly resisting unless and until he is faced with illegal use by of­fi­cer of deadly force. State v. Hall, 36 Or App 133, 583 P2d 587 (1978)

In pros­e­cu­­tion for menacing, under evidence, inter alia, that defendant knew of earlier confronta­tion, that defendant had been past victim of vandalism, that juveniles had driven by house and sped away three times before parking in driveway, defendant was entitled to instruc­tion on theory that he acted in self-de­fense. State v. Lockwood, 43 Or App 639, 603 P2d 1231 (1979)

It was prejudicial error to exclude testimony showing defendant's awareness of husband's violent temper and pre­vi­ous violence against wife, because evidence was relevant to whether defendant could have reasonably believed that husband was about to subject wife to "abuse or imminent use of unlawful physical force." State v. Wheeler, 43 Or App 875, 604 P2d 449 (1979)

Trial court did not err in failing to give defendant's requested jury instruc­tion that individual has unqualified right to resist arrest, if arrest is made with excessive force. State v. Wright, 310 Or 430, 799 P2d 642 (1990)

Even when one or more of threatening circumstances de­scribed in ORS 161.219 (Limitations on use of deadly physical force in defense of a person) is present, use of deadly force is justified only if it does not exceed "de­gree of force which per­son reasonably believes to be necessary." State v. Haro, 117 Or App 147, 843 P2d 966 (1992), Sup Ct review denied

When defendant testified that weapon discharged by accident, trial court did not err by not giving self-de­fense instruc­tion to jury. State v. Stalder, 117 Or App 289, 844 P2d 225 (1992)

Where defendant maintained at trial that defendant did not intend to injure victim of assault, trial court was justified in not giving self-de­fense instruc­tion since no evidence supported theory of self-de­fense. State v. Boyce, 120 Or App 299, 852 P2d 276 (1993)

Law Review Cita­tions

51 OLR 579-587 (1972)

Notes of Decisions

Under Former Similar Statute (ORS 163.110)

There were cases where self-de­fense would not be a de­fense but the right to self-de­fense was still available to es­tab­lish that the defendant was engaged in a lawful act at the time of the killing. State v. Leos, 7 Or App 211, 490 P2d 521 (1971)

Chapter 161

Notes of Decisions

A juvenile court adjudica­tion of whether or not a child committed acts which would be a crim­i­nal viola­tion if committed by an adult must necessarily include an adjudica­tion of all af­firm­a­tive de­fenses that would be available to an adult being tried for the same crim­i­nal viola­tion. State ex rel Juvenile Dept. v. L. J., 26 Or App 461, 552 P2d 1322 (1976)

Law Review Cita­tions

2 EL 237 (1971); 51 OLR 427-637 (1972)


1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 161—General Provisions, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­161.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 161, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­161ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.