Florida has been launched into the international spotlight thanks to its controversial “stand your ground” law following the shooting death of Trayvon Martin.
In February, the teen was shot by George Zimmerman who used the defense to explain taking the teen’s life.
According to Zimmerman, he feared for his life after encountering Martin who was walking back to his father’s girlfriend’s house after making a store run for skittles and ice tea. Zimmerman assumed that the 17-year-old had no place in the neighborhood and phoned 911. He was instructed not to pursue the high schooler but did not comply. After a verbal exchange that turned physical, the 29-year-old asserts that Martin attempted to grab his gun, resulting in him pulling the weapon out and firing.
Zimmerman’s “stand your ground” defense, lifted the veil on a law that many have heard of, but may not know very much about. Other Floridians have cried “stand your ground,” but it doesn’t always work. Michael Dunn, shot and killed an unarmed teen at a gas station because he refused to turn his music down, he was arrested on a first-degree murder charge. Elsewhere in the state of Florida, a 71-year-old man in Tampa used the defense after shooting a man following an argument on a basketball court but was found guilty of manslaughter.
Just to educate you a little more on “stand your grand,” check out 10 things that you may not know about the law.
Photo: ABC News
** Additional reporting from Kristen Gray