Firearms are one of the oldest and most controversial forms of recreation and self-defense and remain a very popular pastime in the desert and wilderness of Nevada. Whether using that firearm for target shooting, hunting or self-defense, there are many legal liabilities tied to how the firearm is used and where the bullets go after the rifle or pistol is fired. Even police officers can be held liable if they recklessly discharge their firearms or accidentally shoot a bystander while trying to apprehend a dangerous criminal.
Every Shooter Is Responsible for the Bullet
One of the primary rules of firearm safety is be certain of your target and know where the bullet is going. That means there is no shooting into shadows, bushes or other unidentified targets and to always have a safe backstop to stop the bullet. Many hunters make the mistake of shooting at shadows and into bushes, brush or other cover thinking they have a deer or other legal prey on the other side. Unfortunately, another hunter often times winds up catching a bullet and many times winds up dying as a result. When that happens, criminal charges might be filed, and a civil lawsuit is a near-certainty.
Over-Penetration Can Lead to Civil Lawsuits
While Nevada is a shall-issue state when it comes to licensing qualified residents to carry concealed firearms, if ever in a situation where firearm use is warranted, any bullets fired can lead to a great deal of liability even when striking the assailant. If a bullet misses the target or passes through it and strikes a bystander or causes significant damage to property, the shooter will face at least a civil suit for liability if not criminal charges. Responsible firearm use is required at all times, and that means ensuring no bystanders or others are injured. And when target-shooting, a safe backstop is very important to ensure not stray bullets or ricochets strike someone or something that it shouldn’t.
Do you or any family members hunt, target-shoot or have a CCW permit?