A Johns Hopkins University student appears to take a literal view of the Castle Doctrine: he defended his domicile the old-fashioned way with an actual sword. The student encountered a man who had broken into the garage of his off-campus housing and proceeded to kill him with a Samurai sword.
While “Castle Doctrine” or “Make My Day” laws often play a role in these cases, this case presents a straight-forward claim of the privilege of self-defense if the student’s account is accurate. He claims that, upon entering the garage, the man lunged at him. Even if he did not see a weapon, it would generally be viewed as sufficient cause for the use of force calculated to cause serious bodily injury or even death.
In Castle Doctrine cases (here and here), homeowners may use lethal force in resisting intruders. An attached garage is usually included in the definition of a domicile or its “curtilage.” There is no specification on the weapon that can be used, so long as it is lawful. If you use an unlawful weapon like a sawed off shotgun, you can still be charged for the separate offense.
The deceased is reportedly Donald D. Rice, 49, who had 29 prior convictions for crimes such as breaking and entering. He had only been released the prior Saturday after his latest arrest.
This appears to be trend among students protecting their domiciles, here.