Tampa Bay Times: 'Stand your ground' protects criminals
Posted in the Minneapolis Forum
#1 Jul 29, 2013
Florida's "stand your ground" self-defense law should be titled the Criminals Relief Act. When the controversial law was enacted in 2005, law enforcement officials warned it would be invoked by people prone to violence and mayhem. Seven years later, it's clear those fears have been realized. Gang members, drug dealers, domestic abusers and other criminals have walked away from killings thanks to "stand your ground," and it's clearer than ever that the law should be repealed. Lawmakers who suggest a tweak can fix the problems are putting politics over sound public policy and the safety of Floridians.
The most recent analysis of more than 100 fatal "stand your ground" cases by Tampa Bay Times staff writers Kameel Stanley and Connie Humburg found that nearly 60 percent of people claiming the self-defense legal protection had been previously arrested, and one in three were accused of a violent crime. All told, 119 people who invoked "stand your ground" after killing someone had been arrested 327 times, not counting traffic violations or other minor arrests.
This is a far cry from the scenario lawmakers envisioned when passing the most expansive self-defense law in the country at the urging of the National Rifle Association. The law expands the "castle doctrine" to give people the right to use lethal force without the duty to retreat whenever they feel at great bodily harm. The thinking was that law-abiding people should be able to defend themselves against an unprovoked assault.
But, just as law enforcement warned at the time, the record demonstrates that people invoking the law are often armed and dangerous, not innocent victims of a random attack. They are people like Maurice Moorer, who landed in jail multiple times and allegedly threatened his then-wife with violence and guns before he killed his ex-wife's boyfriend in 2008. Moorer shot into his victim's car 14 times, but he wasn't prosecuted after he claimed his victim was going to the car for a gun, and a gun was later found in the car.
#2 Jul 29, 2013
The treyvon martin case had NOTHING to do with Florida's "stand your ground" law.
Zimmerman was ATTACKED, without PROVOCATION, and he had EVERY RIGHT TO DEFEND HIMSELF to AVOID BEING KILLED at the hands of a teenage THUG.
Just because he wasn't carrying a stolen gun doesn't make him "innocent".
#3 Jul 29, 2013
Trayvon was murdered, plain and simple, by a racist moron that got off because of reasonable doubt. He'll rot in hell as you will.
Saint Paul, MN
#4 Jul 29, 2013
Justice has spoken.
#6 Jul 29, 2013
Posts are being deleted by a Slewzer.
Saint Petersburg, Russia
#8 Jul 29, 2013
We don't put up with smelly animals in Russia. Our women would beat them silly.
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