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Florida Sen. Chris Smith: Remove Stand Your Ground law's "Last Man Standing" loophole

2:31 PM, Aug 26, 2013   |    comments
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -- A state senator has filed legislation to change Florida's controversial Stand Your Ground law and eliminate what he calls "The Last Man Standing" loophole.

Sen. Chris Smith said too often, gang members, angry neighbors and other deadly aggressors have avoided prosecution by using the Stand Your Ground provision. He said criminals can start a confrontation and then the last person standing offers the only version of events.

So Smith has filed a bill that would prevent people from using deadly force if they chased someone down or left a safe place. All who used deadly force would have to prove that they had taken reasonable steps to avoid killing someone.

Smith argues Stand Your Ground had a long and troubled track record in Florida before the death of Trayvon Martin and acquittal of George Zimmerman. He said it's time to stop giving deadly aggressors a free pass from prosecution.

The Florida Legislature returns to Tallahassee this fall to start considering legislation.

Dave Heller

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