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Law of Self Defense LEVEL 1 Class

Cedar Rapids IA: October 21, 2017
CLE Syllabus


Class Overview:

The Law of Self-Defense LEVEL 1 Class provides a comprehensive fact- and law-based continuing legal education on
the law of self-defense, presented in person by Attorney Andrew F. Branca, an internationally recognized legal expert
in the field. The seminar illustrates how the law of self-defense is applied in real court cases involving real people, and
engages attendees with scenario-driven applications of the legal principles governing the law of self-defense. This
class specifically covers the self-defense relevant statutes, jury instructions, and case law of Iowa.

This seminar is customized to the self-defense legal principles of the United States, using the self-defense statutes,
court decisions, and jury instructions for relevant states. Participants are provided with the legal knowledge and
analytical tools necessary to apply the law of self-defense in a practical and actionable way to their client’s use-of-
force events.

All participants will receive a certificate of completion of the seminar and a copy of the presentation slides.

Class Leader/Speaker Biography

Andrew F. Branca is in his third decade of practicing law in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts (BBO#:
557995). He has written more than 10 published books on the law of self-defense, including the currently available
“The Law of Self Defense, 3rd Edition,” (ISBN: 978-1-943809-14-1) updated in 2016.

Andrew is an internationally recognized expert on the law of self-defense, and has been quoted in this context by the
Wall Street Journal, the Chicago Tribune, the Washington Post, and many other mainstream media, including
nationally syndicated broadcast media and foreign press. He is also the self-defense law subject-matter expert on the
Outdoor Channel’s television show “The Best Defense.”

Andrew is also a frequent speaker at law school gun law symposia, including winning the 2014 UC Berkeley Law
School “Stand-Your-Ground Debate”, and major industry events, including the NRA 2014 Annual Convention and the
2016 USCCA Expo.

Class Syllabus

Total time: 6.00 hours (exclusive of introductions, breaks, lunch)

Block 1: Legal Foundations of Use-of-Force Law (55 min, 9:00-9:55am; 5min break)

Covers the nature of a legal claim of self-defense, and the surprising scope and limits of such a claim.

Illustrates the sources of relevant self-defense law, including statutes, case law, and jury instructions, and the
relative utility of each in understanding and applying self-defense law.

Explains the very binary nature of a self-defense claim, in that it either relieves the defendant of all criminal
liability or leaves the defendant with 100% criminal liability.


Law of Self Defense LEVEL 1 Class: Iowa October 21, 2017: Syllabus v.170327 Page 1 of 2





Provides insight into the decision-making processes of prosecutors in bringing charges, as well as the
priorities of criminal defense attorneys in representing clients in a self-defense case.

Explains the standards of evidence and burdens of proof in a self-defense case, illustrating who is required to
prove what in such a case.

Distinguishes self-defense from the legal defense of accident, and notes the complexities that arise if an act of
criminal negligence is charged.

Block 2: 5 Principles of the Law of Self-Defense: Innocence & Imminence (55min, 10:00-10:55am; 5min break)

1. Innocence
2. Imminence

Block 3: 5 Principles of the Law of Self-Defense: Proportionality & Avoidance (55min, 11-11:55am; 35min break
for lunch)

3. Proportionality
4. Avoidance

Block 4: Five Principles of the Law of Self-Defense: Reasonableness (55min, 12:30-1:25pm; 5min break)

5. Reasonableness

Block 5: Defense of Others (25min, 1:30-1:55pm)

Block 6: Defense of Property (30min, 1:55-2:25pm; 5min break)

Block 7: Consciousness of Guilty & Self-Defense Immunity (25min, 2:30-2:55pm)

Block 8: Interacting with Law Enforcement (45min, 2:55-3:40pm)

Discusses implications for how conduct after the event can strengthen or undermine a use-of-force claim. Also
discusses to what extent facts known about attacker’s character or reputation after the fact can be introduced into
evidence (e.g., your attacker’s reputation for violence). Most important, we cover the critically important knowledge
of what should be said, and what not said, to the 911 dispatcher, to responding officers, and to investigative officers in
the aftermath of a defensive encounter.

Block 9: Crafting a Legally-Sound Self-Defense Strategy (15min, 3:45-4:00pm)

Covers the five key tactics around which to build a legally sound self-defense strategy that enables your client to stay
well within the boundaries of use-of-force law.


For more information, contact: emily@lawofselfdefense.com

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