Self Defense: Distinction Between Homicide Versus Assault Charges
February 3rd, 2022

“The difference between CALCRIM No. 3470 and CALCRIM No. 505—that is,the difference between self-defense in the homicide context and self-defense that will justify an assault—lies in the type of the threat the defendant believed they faced. To
justify a homicide or attempted homicide, the defendant must believe that “danger” or “great bodily harm” is imminent, whereas an assault committed in self-defense may be justified if the defendant feared that any “bodily injury”, or even an “unlawful touching,”
was imminent. For both homicide and assault, the amount of force the defendant uses must be no more than reasonably necessary to fend off the perceived threat.” People v. Waxlax (2021) ____ Cal App 5th _____, at _____(E074347; 12/9/21; C/A 4th, Div. 2).)


Thus when the defendant is charged with both homicide and assault it may be error to give CC 505 and not CC 3470. [finding alleged error in omitting CC 3470 to be harmless].)

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