Citizens Arrest When Where How and Why

Breaking News July 22, 2010

This is an excellent article and can be effective for all American’s and their Criminal Politicians- Stew Webb


July 16, 2010


By Jim Frazier

By Jim Frazier

The recent journey by Gary Faulker to Pakistan to arrest Osama Bin Laden brings up questions about citizen arrest.

“Actually citizens have more powers of arrest than police,” said Hal Von Luebbert, a former police officer who trains people in arrest techniques. “Citizens delegate their authority to police with all kinds of restrictions, but the power resides within each adult citizen to conduct arrests anywhere in the nation.” Arresting people in another nation is not recommended by Von Luebbert. “The powers are for American citizens within our own national borders,” he said.

What are the laws and rules? “Actually, citizen arrest is a duty,” Von Luebbert said. “If you are an adult, and you witness a crime, your duty is to make an arrest. You need to be the eye-witness. You cannot act on hearsay. But if you see a crime being committed, you are obligated to make an arrest during the crime or soon after.”

“A police officer cannot make an arrest outside his limited jurisdiction,” Von Luebbert explained. “And they can be sued for false arrest.” As a citizen, you can arrest anyone, anywhere in America, and again -- it is your duty as a citizen to make the arrest. You can call the police for help, but you do not need to ask for help.”

Von Luebbert, a former police officer and detective in Iowa, trained Texas sheriff officers in arrest techniques. He advises that any arrest to halt a crime or arrest a criminal is dangerous. “This is not something you do without serious consideration. You need to realize that an arrest is not a conviction. The person you arrest is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Your job is to take him to a judge, to a courthouse, or police officer, and present your evidence. That’s it. If you don’t have good evidence, the criminal can be set free, but a judge will decide what happens next -- not you. A date for a hearing will be set, and the person may be released immediately, or held for awhile, or placed in jail without bond. It all depends on the facts, the crime, and the evidence you present.”

Good evidence may be a video, photographs, physical objects, sound recordings, fingerprints, DNA, blood, and witness testimony including your own. “The same rules of evidence apply whether you are the police or a citizen. Get your evidence at the time of the crime,” he said. “Don’t delay.”“A police officer can take off a badge and uniform and make a citizen arrest as a citizen,” he said. “This is done outside a policeman’s jurisdiction more often than you might know. That’s fine,” he said. “Like you, they have to testify in court as a citizen.”

“There is a dark side to consider,” Von Luebbert warned. Police control a crime scene and gather evidence. “If you are arrested for a crime and you are truly innocent, call a detective immediately and get them into the crime scene so they can obtain evidence immediately. Police sometimes hide evidence or slightly change evidence that might cast doubt on a conviction,” he said. “They can become overly eager to get a conviction. Just remember that any bad lawyer can win a case with good evidence. Get a detective into the scene immediately to tell your side of the story with evidence.”

Von Lubbert is not a lawyer and advises anyone considering an arrest to check with local authorities and to check state laws. “It’s much better to call the police, but what if your criminal is the police captain, or the district attorney, or the sheriff, then what do you do?  What if the criminal is a big name politician, like a senator?”

If the police, sheriff, or FBI refuses to arrest a political figure that you know has committed a crime, and you witnessed the crime, then you can make an arrest. But how? When? Where?

“Doesn’t matter when or where,” Von Luebbert said. “As an American citizen, you are not bound by jurisdictions within the borders of America. This is what your “citizen power” is all about. This is the power given to citizens to control their government if absolutely necessary.” But check the state’s rules, he advised.

How?  “You assemble a group of friends, the larger the group the better. The only weapons you need are shotguns. That is what the police use. You don’t fire them. You announce loudly that you are placing the person under arrest. Tell them why, and affirm to them that they won’t be harmed. Then gently and carefully take them directly to a judge or courthouse. Present your evidence and make your charges in a formal complaint. That’s it. Go home. You’re done. Let the system handle the rest of the process.” questions exist, like what happens if the person resists.

Von Luebbert has written a book, CITIZEN POWER NOW on how to conduct Citizen Arrest, how to convene a Grand Jury, and how to use Guerilla Law tactics in the courtroom.

More information can be obtained at

Here is the Colorado law.

Colorado Revised Statutes Title 16-3-201. “Arrest by a Private Person.”

A person who is not a peace officer may arrest another person when any crime has been or is being committed by the arrested person in the presence of the person making the arrest.

16-3-201. Arrest by a private person.
  A person who is not a peace officer may arrest another person when any crime has been or is being committed by the arrested person in the presence of the person making the arrest.
Source: L. 72: R&RE, p. 199, § 1. C.R.S. 1963: § 39-3-201.
  Am.Jur.2d. See 5 Am.Jur.2d, Arrest, §§ 56, 57.
  C.J.S. See 6A C.J.S., Arrest, §§ 10-13.
  Law reviews. For comment, "Leake v. Cain: Abrogation of Public Duty
Doctrine in Colorado?", see 59 U. Colo. L. Rev. 383 (1988).
  Annotator's note. Since § 16-3-201 is similar to repealed § 39-2-20,
C.R.S. 1963, relevant cases construing that provision have been included
in the annotations to this section.
A private citizen may arrest for any crime committed in his presence.
Schiffner v. People, 173 Colo. 123, 476 P.2d 756 (1970).
Officer outside of jurisdiction arrests with authority of private
citizen. A peace officer acting outside the territorial limits of his
jurisdiction does not have any less authority to arrest than does a person who is a private citizen. People v. Wolf, 635 P.2d 213 (Colo. 1981).
When "in presence" requirement met. The "in presence" requirement
of this section is met if the arrestor observes acts which are in
themselves sufficiently indicative of a crime in the course of commission. People v. Olguin, 187 Colo. 34, 528 P.2d 234 (1974).

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