Author of Florida Stand your ground law says his law doesn't protect shooter


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usmarine0352_2005
March 22, 2012, 05:26 PM
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http://www.coloradoconnection.com/news/politics/story.aspx?id=733228#.T2t_TdXYRsI




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Florida gun law authors say charge the shooter

Posted: 03.22.2012 at 6:27 AM


The co-authors of Florida's controversial self-defense gun law say it shouldn't protect shooters like George Zimmerman, who killed unarmed black teenager Trayvon Martin last month.

"They got the goods on him. They need to prosecute whoever shot the kid," said former Republican Sen. Durell Peaden, a state lawmaker who sponsored the Stand Your Ground law in 2005, the Miami Herald reports. Of Zimmerman, he added, "He has no protection under my law."

But Zimmerman, a neighbor watch volunteer, forfeit the self-defense protections when he decided to pursue Martin before killing him, Peaden said.

"The guy lost his defense right then," said Peaden, according to the Herald. "When he said 'I'm following him,' he lost his defense."
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The Lone Haranguer
March 22, 2012, 06:01 PM
No thinking person believes otherwise. It isn't a shield or immunity from wrongdoing. Unfortunately, from the news coverage I've seen, thinking people seem to be in abeyance.

chrt396
March 22, 2012, 06:01 PM
That's kind of what I thought when I heard the story. Don't understand why they have not arrested the guy! The law is a good one..we just have a guy (GZ), that obviously did not interpret the law very well.

Cosmoline
March 22, 2012, 06:39 PM
No thinking person believes otherwise

Well maybe not. As is being discussed in the legal thread on this law, there do appear to be some problems the Florida legislature needs to attend to. The self defense statute doesn't bar the defense for those who create the confrontation--only for those who are breaking a law. When combined with burden-shifting rules and some questionable restrictions the legislature chose to impose on the LEO's investigating these cases, the results can be troublesome.

Emotions are running remarkably high over this issue, and there's a tendency to dig heels in and refuse to budge. But this is one time we should pay attention to a potential shortcoming in this particular law and FIX IT, so we don't end up seeing a reversal of the fundamental gains. I particularly don't like the provisions which seek to tie the hands of law enforcement. The legislature is ill-suited to micro manage cops on the beat.

Tommygunn
March 22, 2012, 07:20 PM
Well, from what I've read of this incident, Zimmerman's actions do not by any reasonable means fall within stand your ground rules. He went after Trayvor Martin and that is NOT STANDING YOUR GROUND.
Sorry. Zimmerman is toast. At the very least he showed very very bad judgement. And that's before we get into the legal issues.

JRH6856
March 22, 2012, 07:41 PM
The point is, the FL statue conveying immunity from prosecution (FS 776.032) is not part of the Stand Your Ground law (FS 776.013), it is a separate section.

steelerdude99
March 22, 2012, 07:44 PM
I have not viewed the text of the Florida Stand Your Ground statute nor am I a lawyer. That said; the author’s intent often is not reflected the written text of a law. The result keeps the Supreme Court jurists employed for life.

Chuck

AABEN
March 22, 2012, 08:13 PM
The man was in the wrong when he got out of his car!! He was told not to do any thing!! So there fore he has his A++ in the slang.

JRH6856
March 22, 2012, 11:06 PM
He was told not to do any thing!! So there fore he has his A++ in the slang.

So he was told by then operator not to follow. Do instructions from a police operator carry the same weight as instructions from a police officer? The law might require that one comply with instructions from a police officer, but most operators are not sworn police officers so there may be no legal compulsion to comply.

Following another person is not an illegal act unless one has to tresspass in the process. There is no indication that trespass was involved. If both actors were on public property, then both had a legal right to be there meaning both had a right to "stand [their] ground and meet force with force." if there was a confrontation.

There are problems with the actual code eliminating the duty to retreat when combined with the way the defense is treated in Florida's courts. While picking a fight with someone and taking the first punches is not illegal, shooting the puncher dead and claiming self defense would strike most as very questionable. Yet that's precisely what can happen under Florida's law as it is currently drafted. With the shooter as the sole witness, he can easily make his prima facie case of self defense and the state is left to scrounge for evidence to disprove self defense. Was the harm really "grave"? Who can say. Let's say there's a broken nose perhaps and some scrapes. The shooter can claim he was being beaten badly and nobody will be able to disprove him beyond a reasonable doubt. Evidence that the shooter provoked the assault will be irrelevant, since verbal teasing or taunting is not criminal. (thanks to Cosmoline for this summary paragraph)

Once a person claims self defense, FL law immunizes hem from arrest, criminal prosecution or civil litigation until such time as the defense is disproved. While the police may investigate, they may not arrest until they have probable cause to believe that the use of lethal force was not justified. When there are no witnesesses other than the survivor, this is difficult at best.

Onmilo
March 22, 2012, 11:14 PM
I don't think any law will protect someone who hunts down and kills a teenager who was armed with a can of ice tea and a bag of candy.
God forbid I hope there is no law out there anyway,

usmarine0352_2005
March 22, 2012, 11:46 PM
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That's kind of what I thought when I heard the story. Don't understand why they have not arrested the guy! The law is a good one..we just have a guy (GZ), that obviously did not interpret the law very well.



They need to build up enough evidence. They don't want to arrest him too early and then lose out. You have the right to a speedy trial. If they go to court to early without all of their ducks in a row they would lose.


This is a huge case, I'm sure the prosecution wants to cross all of their T's and dot all of their I's before they go to trial.



It's also not police chief's fault. He's a scapegoat. He probably hasn't made an arrest in over a decade. Just because you want someone arrested and he isn't doesn't mean you remove the police chief. It's the DA's decision to press charges and if he does then a warrant is put out, and it's still not the chief who goes out and arrests him.



It's called the "Stand your ground" law, not the chase down, instigate violence and then murder law. If that's how it happened the shooter should be charged with murder.



The law also should not be repealed because of this.
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chevyman097
March 23, 2012, 12:14 AM
Do we really have to have 23 threads on this topic?

Kaeto
March 23, 2012, 07:52 AM
I think it's a political move by the cops to try to get the law removed.

Nico Testosteros
March 23, 2012, 08:53 AM
Just like Fast and Furious was a subterfuge to get a new AWB. Interesting.

Unistat
March 23, 2012, 09:22 AM
I think it's a political move by the cops to try to get the law removed.
You are assuming police do not like this law. Most of the rank and file cops I know are pro-2a and self defense, and as you can see, we live in the same area. I'm probably only 4 or 5 miles away from you.

Now, if you had said "police administration" or "elected officials" I would be far more inclined to agree.

Sam1911
March 23, 2012, 09:26 AM
Do we really have to have 23 threads on this topic?

Indeed not.

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