Florida Stand Your Ground...

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by ArtVandelay, Jul 14, 2013.

  1. leogator

    leogator Well-Known Member

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    Here's where I think Zimmerman failed. He did not exercise care to avoid confrontation. Let me bring up a personal experience that will illustrate my point. I turned right on red in front of a person that was turning left from the opposite lane. Too close I guess according to him who took great umbrage at my driving to the point of pulling up next to me, taking out a 9mm out of his glove compartment and showed it to me in a threatening manner. It just so happened that I was going to the shooting range that morning and had an assortment of guns in the car. If I wanted to escalate the situation I could have shot him, since my life appeared threatened, no questions asked. The police would have found his gun in the car and I don't think I would have been prosecuted. However, I did the prudent thing and I just let him pass me and speed away. I did bring one of the guns, my trusty 1911 Colt closer to me, took the safety off and was ready if he wanted to escalate. The danger passed and nothing happened. Had I foolishly responded to the provocation he would have been dead along with other innocent bystanders since he probably would have lost control of his vehicle. This is what I call exercising care.
  2. Itssaul

    Itssaul VIP Member

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    Woah, no dude. It has to be at night, in a small neighborhood
  3. wgbgator

    wgbgator Sub-optimal Poster Premium Member

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    It doesn't matter where (as long as in SYG territory) or when, only that there are no other witnesses or physical evidence to refute your story.
  4. MichiGator2002

    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    Or substantially more compelling physical/forensic evidence than there was in the Zimmerman case. It isn't the self-defense statute's fault that the evidence tended away from the state's version and toward the defense's.
  5. gatorlaw71

    gatorlaw71 Well-Known Member

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    Exactly.

    For what it's worth, I'm not a member of the NRA, I don't own a gun, and I'm on the left side of almost all issues on THFSG. Stand Your Ground seems like a perfectly sensible idea to me.

    SYG is a simple and reasonable extension of self-defense law. it has two practical effects: (1) to keep people from second-guessing whether the person could or should have fled instead, and (2) to protect the party trying to defend themselves from a civil lawsuit by the perpetrator.

    WESGATORS' post on page 2 links an article written by the principal drafter of the SYG law saying SYG brings Florida in line with the law in the most of the other states. It also explains the reasons behind the statute, including avoiding second-guessing the victim, and eliminating the effects of the duty to flee doctrine in unequal confrontation situations, including a woman resisting a man. Pretty persuasive.

    As rpmGator states in a post: "SYG won't go away in Florida, we have had too many innocent people in this state harmed and killed by crime, to return to victim status as policy. The only difference with SYG is that the things we would have been forced to do to protect your family then, won't put you in jail or cost you more than the thief would have taken, now."
  6. wargunfan

    wargunfan Well-Known Member

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    Well said. Rep to you.
  7. wargunfan

    wargunfan Well-Known Member

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    In my CCP class the primary focus was on avoiding potentially dangerous situations and being a responsible and law abiding citizen. It was also emphasized that situational awareness is critical to knowing when to put distance between yourself and a pontential confrontation. I recommend attendance to a good CCP class whether or not you apply for a permit.
  8. tideh8rGator

    tideh8rGator Well-Known Member

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    I can assure you that if Martin had jumped a cop, he would have been dead a LOT quicker than he was. The police have a built-in advantage that no private citizen can have.

    And the cop wouldn't have been charged with anything.

    CCW have to have SOME protection for what they do. What good is having a gun if you are not legally empowered or allowed to use it? Is it just to be carried as a prop to scare people off?
  9. Matthanuf06

    Matthanuf06 New Member

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    Also if someone is devious enough to plan the whole "start a fight, lose the fight, shoot" premeditated murder scheme there is more than likely plenty of other evidence out there.

    Premeditated murder and your "getaway" plan is a self defense case is not very bright at all. Incredibly risky

    And besides the fact that someone may try to find a loophole in an existing law in order to commit premeditated murder certainly doesn't mean the existing law is terrible. It's faulty logic
  10. ursidman

    ursidman Well-Known Member

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    I believe both parties share blame in this death. It is very likely that had GZ not been (legally) carrying a gun he would not have felt confident/emboldened enough to follow TM on foot in the dark. Carrying a gun changes the way a person thinks and percieves the world (http://www.smartplanet.com/blog/thinking-tech/study-carrying-a-gun-can-make-you-more-paranoid/10875)(http://science.howstuffworks.com/does-owning-a-gun-change-your-behavior-.htm)

    It is also very likely that had TM fled GZ more vigorously instead of confronting Zimmerman (or so it appears) that he would be alive. One is dead and one will suffer the emotional consequences of his apparently legal but perhaps immoral act.
  11. gtr2x

    gtr2x Well-Known Member

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    Probably true, but highly unlikely he would have jumped a real cop.
    And if Trayvon had been a plain clothes cop that Zimmerman shot, then what?

    Zimm is extremely lucky that Trayvon wasn't carrying a gun or he probably would have been the one being mourned and Trayvon would be using the self defense angle and walking. One can only hope a lesson learned, but somehow I doubt it.
  12. Jonas

    Jonas Well-Known Member

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    It's crazy to me that the burden of proof of the prosecution to prove that it wasn't in self defense. He killed a guy. He should have to prove it was in self defense.


  13. MichiGator2002

    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    It is the majority view, by a considerable margin. The burden-shift to the defense is an artifact that has only survived in a few states. It's not even a particularly recent development (i.e. it didn't show up with the iPhone).
  14. GatorBen

    GatorBen Well-Known Member

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    That Wisconsin lawyer is dead wrong. In fact, while I obviously am not a WI attorney, he doesn't appear to even be correct about the law in his own state based on what I have been able to find of Wisconsin's jury instructions.

    The linked WI appellate decision (State v. Henderson from 2001, available here: http://www.wicourts.gov/ca/opinion/DisplayDocument.html?content=html&seqNo=2249) at footnote 5 reproduces Wisconsin Criminal Jury Instruction 805, which apparently states in relevant part that:

    If that's accurate, WI's jury instruction is even more clear on the State bearing the burden than Florida's is.

    Further, Volokh had a post about this today (for those who don't know Eugene Volokh is a professor of law at UCLA and one of the chief contributors to the widely read legal academic blog The Volokh Conspiracy). His conclusion was the exact opposite of the one you link:

    http://www.volokh.com/2013/07/14/burden-and-quantum-of-proof-on-self-defense/

    This seems correct to me, because even when the Supreme Court reviewed Ohio's (the apparent lone standout) practice of placing the burden by a preponderance on the Defendant back in 1987, they noted that all but two states had assumed the burden of requiring the State to disprove self-defense.

    Perhaps the lawyer just isn't appreciating that Florida, like every other state with the majority rule, still requires the Defense to produce some evidence (either in their own case or the prosecution's) suggesting self-defense before the State is required to disprove it?
  15. Minister_of_Information

    Minister_of_Information I'm your huckleberry Premium Member

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    You have totally neglected the burden of proof, which lies at the core of SYG. Any mutual combat that is less than explicit, massively witnessed or captured on video will be wrought with ambiguity. And one side of the equation will be six feet under. "Reasonable doubt" whether you like it or not.
  16. MichiGator2002

    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    Prove the duel, prove the duty to retreat. Proving the duel, probably not as hard as you imagine, unless we are again crafting a hyper-nuanced hypo purely for the purpose of circumventing the statute. Your duel thing is BS, is what I'm getting at, at a policy level, it is beyond meaningless. The remote chance of dueling making a comeback AND the circumstances being just so as to satisfy the use of force statute without creating a duty to retreat and just so as to leave the state no evidence by which to meet its burden*... does not outweigh the public safety interests and individual rights interests that the statute advances, and do not justify Florida moving from the vast majority of states with no duty to retreat and the state bearing the burden of proof to the minority who don't.

    *Above all things, don't base your baseline of likely available evidence around the Zimmerman case. When judging what's provable by the state, it's not your model case. This case was spectacularly light on evidence that could prove the crime charge because a) pure chance, and more relevantly b) he probably did shoot in self-defense (i.e. if reality differs from the state's theory, the state's theory will be harder to prove).
  17. rpmGator

    rpmGator Well-Known Member

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    Concealed means hidden. Most homeowners stopping a break in next door, don't hide the weapon and are not required to do so.
  18. jmoliver

    jmoliver Active Member

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    Not sure what the self defense law is in Wisconsin but Florida's is very similar to most other States. he media doesnt seem to understand that fact. They still seem to think this had something to do with SYG.
  19. WESGATORS

    WESGATORS Well-Known Member

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    For those that propose a change in legislation, would you have penalized Zimmerman for getting out of the car to follow? What penalty would you assess to Zimmerman and for what, specifically, if not the following?

    How would you address a situation where the CCW permit/weapon holder is not actually following, but an attacker is in position to make that appear to be the case? What if there appears to be a criminal act in progress, may the CCW permit/weapon holder get out to take a closer look or is that option only available to a person without the gun (but perhaps with another weapon).

    Go GATORS!
    ,WESGATORS
  20. WESGATORS

    WESGATORS Well-Known Member

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    He did prove it was in self-defense. He was on his back with a broken nose and had his head struck against the ground multiple times. How much evidence does there need to be? How much of a beating should you have to take to prove the need to defend yourself?

    Go GATORS!
    ,WESGATORS

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