Culver Pleased to Support Castle Doctrine

In her efforts to protect the Second Amendment for all law-abiding citizens, Rep. Lynda Schlegel Culver (R-Northumberland/Snyder) voted today in favor of legislation known as the Castle Doctrine. 

“Our Second Amendment rights, both in our state and national constitutions, guarantee us the right to own and bear arms, but current state law does not protect law-abiding citizens if they need to defend themselves, their families or their homes in the event of an attack,” Culver said. “Even if a homeowner uses lethal force because someone has broken into their home and the homeowner believes the lives of himself and his family are in danger, he could still face prosecution. That’s why this legislation is needed.” 

Under the Castle Doctrine, House Bill 40, state law is clarified so if an attacker or intruder intends to inflict bodily harm, deadly force may be used to protect oneself, family and others while in their home or an occupied vehicle. That presumption also applies if a person is trying to unlawfully remove an occupant, against his or her will from a home or vehicle.  

The presumption would not apply if the person entering a home was another resident of the home, a law enforcement officer, a parent, grandparent or other guardian removing a child from the home or vehicle. In addition, this legislation would not apply if a person was using their home or vehicle to engage in criminal activity. The legislation is based on a similar bill enacted in Florida that addresses the use of deadly force in defense of self and others within an individual’s residence or occupied vehicle. 

To view video of Culver’s comments, visit or  

“By no means does this legislation endorse lawful aggression,” she noted. “This proposal merely gives individuals the necessary legal protection to respond to such aggression.” 

A separate section of the bill also strengthens the penalties related to the trafficking of stolen guns.    

House Bill 40 received a strong bipartisan vote of 164 to 37 and now heads to state Senate for consideration. 

State Representative Lynda Schlegel Culver
108th District, Pennsylvania House of Representatives

Contact:  Jennifer Keaton          

Share |