Criminal lawyer Ian Allis says citizens need to make sure they are able to prove potential 'harm', before smashing a car window to let someone free.
He says that a person could be sued or criminally charged with malicious injury to property for this behaviour.
Allis advises that, although well-intended, the circumstances need to provide good reason to believe that the animal or person being rescued is in distress.
He also explains that there are legal differences between animal rights and human rights.
The saving of an animals life is very different to the potential danger and necessities when it comes to saving a person's life.— Ian Allis, criminal lawyer
Have a listen to his legal breakdown:
This article first appeared on CapeTalk : If you're gona be a hero (and smash a car window), make sure you can prove harm