Guam's castle doctrine law may not include yards and outdoor spa - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Guam's castle doctrine law may not include yards and outdoor spaces

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Yesterday we gave you an exclusive interview with a Dededo family on Nevermind Road who was involved in a shooting incident over the weekend. The family alleges they were forced to fire a gun at their neighbor who came onto their property with a metal baseball bat. The incident was caught on camera and has since garnered over tens of thousands of views on Facebook and plenty of feedback from you at home who had questions on the Castle Doctrine, a law passed two years ago that enables homeowners to protect themselves from intruders.

A man's house may be his castle, but according to Guam's Castle Doctrine Law, his lawn is not included. "If it happened outside the confines of the four walls, then the Castle Doctrine does not appear to apply, even though its purpose and intent seemed to suggest otherwise," said Attorney Curtis Van De Veld.

On Saturday, 25-year-old Nathan Camacho was arrested for attempted murder after shooting 22-year-old Mailo Atonis in the leg. As captured in video, Atonis was wielding a metal baseball bat appearing to threaten the family on their property, prompting Camacho to shoot. According to Van De Veld, the law clearly reads that an intruder must be inside the confines of the home - and rules out yards and outdoor spaces.

While he understands the language is intended to deter homeowners from senseless shootings, he believes there are too many gray areas and proposes other scenarios not covered by Guam's law. "It's not sufficiently clear and could've been better drafted, in my opinion," the lawyer stated.  "If they're still in the doorway, half of them is outside, half of them is inside. Are you able to use the force that the castle doctrine allows you to? And then are law school examples about what happens if you shoot the person and the force of the shot compels them backwards and they fall outside the house. Is the deadly force inappropriate because their body isn't inside the house?"

Although Attorney Van De Veld hasn't been retained by Camacho, he does believe Camacho's actions may be justified as self-defense. "It seems to me that the defense of self-defense would apply," he projected, adding, "If you believe someone is likely to, within the very immediate future use deadly force you have the right to use equal deadly force to protect yourself."

According to Attorney General's Office spokesperson Carlina Charfauros, the agency cannot comment on whether or not Castle Doctrine would apply in this case, or any case for that matter. The interpretation must be left to each case and its specific set of facts.

Camacho meanwhile was released and noticed to appear in court in three years.  

Some of you have also commented on Facebook regarding the connection to the family to the infamous Harmon road rage video, which we broke last year. Nathan Camacho was not arrested in connection to that case, but we've confirmed that the individuals involved are related.

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