Manchester

Manchester police chief Peter Fahy: Defending home law exists

The chief constable of Greater Manchester has said that a law already exists to allow people to defend their homes through force against intruders.

It comes after Prime Minister David Cameron said he wanted to strengthen the laws in favour of homeowners.

On Wednesday John Bennell, 27, from Hyde was stabbed to death as he attempted to break into a Salford house.

Householder Peter Flanagan, 57, was arrested.

'Not always accurate'

At present the law allows people to defend themselves if they fear for their lives, but under Mr Cameron's proposals people will be allowed by law to use force if they feel their property is under threat.

The announcement came on Tuesday and coincided with the Prime Minister's announcement that he was dropping plans to halve sentences for criminals who enter guilty pleas.

Mr Fahy told the BBC that he believed the existing law protected people whose property was under threat.

He said: "There has been a lot of publicity about individual cases which make it look like the law has lost its way and the criminals are in control and human rights have got out of control - but that is not always the accurate picture.

"The law is very clear if you are being attacked in your own home you can attack back.

"You can get in the first punch. You can protect your property and protect yourself.

"The law is very clear on that."

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