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Stand Your Ground Tag

The Orlando Sentinel reports that an ad hoc Florida state Senate panel, drawn together specifically to advocate changes to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law, has emerged to announce that there should be changes to Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” law. The key change sought by the panel is to impose limits on the immunity from civil liability for people who lawfully defend themselves against lethal attack.  In other words, civil damage lawsuits even after an acquittal. Ironically, the changes advocated by the “Stand Your Ground” committee do not target Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” statute at all--§776.013(3). Home protection; use of deadly force; presumption of fear of death or great bodily harm—but rather seek to undermine Florida’s self-defense immunity statute—§776.032. Immunity from criminal prosecution and civil action for justifiable use of force. [caption id="attachment_58288" align="alignnone" width="446"](Defense attorney Mark O'Mara during Zimmerman trial) (Defense attorney Mark O'Mara during Zimmerman trial)[/caption] Even a cursory reading of the law reveals that the Stand Your Ground statute has nothing whatever to do with the Self-Defense Immunity statute, other than having been adopted by the same session of the Florida legislature. Indeed, the legislators have simply cloaked their desire to re-impose criminal and civil liability on law-abiding people, who act in genuine self-defense, under the guise of “fighting” Stand Your Ground. In doing so, these feckless legislators  merely reveal the duplicitous nature of their actions. Under current Florida law, an unlawful aggressor who seeks to sue their victims for harm suffered at the hands of the defending victims will be compelled to reimburse the victim if the victim's use of force is judged to have been lawful self-defense.  It is precisely this provision that keeps the lawyers advising the Trayvon Martin family from bringing suit against George Zimmerman.

Much has been made lately of the self-defense legal doctrine of Stand-Your-Ground, mostly for political purposes unrelated to any actual legal application of the doctrine (for more on this, see here: Stand-Your-Ground: Gun Control Zombies Exploit Grieving Black Community). [caption id="attachment_59829" align="alignnone" width="500"] Reverend Al Sharpton protests...

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