State v. Garrison

525 A.2d 498 (1987)

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State v. Garrison

Connecticut Supreme Court
525 A.2d 498 (1987)

Facts

Jessie Garrison (defendant) was at his sister’s apartment when Jeremiah Sharp, Garrison’s sister’s on-again off-again live-in boyfriend, came to the apartment and began arguing with Garrison’s sister. Garrison intervened in the argument, and his sister went into her bedroom. Garrison and Sharp argued with each other, and Garrison tried to convince Sharp, who was heavily intoxicated, to leave the apartment. Sharp reached inside his jacket and Garrison noticed that there was a pistol in Sharp’s waistband. Garrison, who was alert and sober, took the pistol from Sharp’s waistband. Sharp then grabbed a steak knife and moved toward Garrison, wielding the knife. Garrison was standing near the door to an adjacent room. Because Garrison was a frequent visitor to the apartment, he was familiar with the floorplan and was aware of the adjacent room. Rather than retreat into the room, Garrison shot and killed Sharp. Garrison was tried for manslaughter and claimed self-defense. The trial court convicted Garrison of manslaughter, reasoning that he had used excessive force and thus had not acted in self-defense. Garrison appealed to the Connecticut Supreme Court.

Rule of Law

Issue

Holding and Reasoning (Peters, C.J.)

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