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NATIONAL
May 12, 2012 | By Steve Padilla, This post has been corrected, as indicated below.
The Trayvon Martin case and Florida's “stand your ground” law were brought into sharp relief yet again - this time in a Jacksonville courtroom where a woman who said she fired a warning shot to ward off an abusive husband was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Among the fiercest critics of Friday's sentencing was Rep. Corrine Brown. “Jacksonville is my home,” the Democratic congresswoman said. “I have lived here all of my life. And clearly it was no justice in this courtroom.” Marissa Alexander, 31, had been convicted of three counts or aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
ARTICLES BY DATE
NEWS
February 19, 2014 | By Scott Martelle
A young man mouths off from the back of an SUV in a Florida convenience store parking lot - and Michael Dunn, sitting in the next vehicle, pulls a gun out of his glove compartment and opens fire , later claiming he felt threatened by a shotgun that he, and only he, saw. A group of teens pulls a prank by dumping eggs, mayonnaise and leaves on a parked car - and Willie Noble, whose car it was, allegedly storms out of his house and opens fire,...
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OPINION
July 21, 2013 | By Joelle Anne Moreno
After George Zimmerman was acquitted in the slaying of Trayvon Martin, Stevie Wonder declared that he would never again perform in Florida or in any state with a "stand your ground" law. Over the last week, moral outrage over the reckless expansion of self-defense laws in Florida has fueled an international tourism boycott, protests around the country, and sent 200 students to the state Capitol in Tallahassee to await Florida Gov. Rick Scott's return....
NATIONAL
July 26, 2013 | By Michael Muskal
The mother of slain black teenager Trayvon Martin told a convention of civil rights activists that she wants them to use the case to prevent a similar tragedy elsewhere. Speaking Friday to the National Urban League convention in Philadelphia, Sybrina Fulton called on the group to fight against “stand your ground” laws, which she and others have blamed for the death of Martin, 17, shot in a Florida altercation with George Zimmerman, a former neighborhood watch volunteer. Zimmerman was acquitted of all charges this month by a six-person Florida jury.
NATIONAL
March 5, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
An attorney for George Zimmerman said in court Tuesday that he did not need a two-week immunity hearing in April to determine whether the defendant acted in self-defense under Florida's "stand your ground law. " Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin, 17, during a neighborhood confrontation on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Fla. His defense has maintained that he shot Martin, who was unarmed, in self-defense. The two-week hearing had been scheduled to determine whether Zimmerman could be exempt from culpability by a legal principle in Florida known as "stand your ground," in which a person is given immunity for using deadly force if he or she had a reasonable fear of imminent death or great bodily injury.
NATIONAL
March 28, 2012 | By Dalina Castellanos
When a burglar carrying a bag of stolen car stereos swung it at Greyston Garcia's head, Garcia swung back with his fist - in which he clutched a kitchen knife. Garcia recovered the bag, which held his own stereo, and went home thinking he'd seen the burglar run away uninjured. But the burglar later died and, months after the Jan. 25, 2011, confrontation, Garcia was facing a second-degree murder charge in a Miami-Dade County courtroom. Garcia claimed self-defense, citing Florida's 7-year-old “stand your ground” law, which is also at the center of the Trayvon Martin shooting case.
NEWS
July 16, 2013 | By Richard A. Serrano
WASHINGTON - Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr., speaking about the George Zimmerman acquittal at the NAACP annual convention in Orlando, Fla., urged that laws like Florida's “stand your ground” statute allowing people to use licensed firearms when they feel threatened should be invoked only after the person first tries to retreat from a dangerous situation. “It's time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods,” Holder said.
NATIONAL
June 14, 2012 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON -- A retired Houston-area firefighter could face life in prison after a jury convicted him Wednesday of murder in the shooting of an unarmed neighbor, rejecting his "stand your ground" defense. The trial's punishment phase is scheduled to begin Thursday. During the trial, Raul Rodriguez, 47, argued that he was protected under Texas' self-defense law when he killed neighbor Kelly Danaher two years ago. Rodriguez, angry about a noisy birthday party at Danaher's home, went over to his neighbor's house, according to testimony and court documents.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 16, 2013 | By August Brown
The George Zimmerman trial highlighted the legal and moral complexity of Florida's "stand your ground" laws. Stevie Wonder, for one, thinks it's time to fight back against them. The legendary singer-songwriter told a Quebec City, Canada, crowd on Sunday that he would  boycott Florida on future tours, along with any other state that has passed similar "stand your  ground" legislation. "I decided today that until the 'stand your ground' law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again," Wonder said.
NATIONAL
June 12, 2012 | By Rene Lynch
Trayvon Martin's parents appeared before a task force in Florida on Tuesday to denounce the way the state's controversial "stand your ground" law can be used to protect aggressors. Tracy Martin and Sybrina Fulton believe that's what happened in the case of their son, who was unarmed when he was shot and killed in February by a neighborhood watch volunteer. "They need to amend these laws," Fulton said, according to the Orlando Sentinel, which was covering the task force hearing.
OPINION
July 21, 2013 | By Joelle Anne Moreno
After George Zimmerman was acquitted in the slaying of Trayvon Martin, Stevie Wonder declared that he would never again perform in Florida or in any state with a "stand your ground" law. Over the last week, moral outrage over the reckless expansion of self-defense laws in Florida has fueled an international tourism boycott, protests around the country, and sent 200 students to the state Capitol in Tallahassee to await Florida Gov. Rick Scott's return....
NEWS
July 16, 2013 | By Richard A. Serrano
WASHINGTON - Atty. Gen. Eric H. Holder Jr., speaking about the George Zimmerman acquittal at the NAACP annual convention in Orlando, Fla., urged that laws like Florida's “stand your ground” statute allowing people to use licensed firearms when they feel threatened should be invoked only after the person first tries to retreat from a dangerous situation. “It's time to question laws that senselessly expand the concept of self-defense and sow dangerous conflict in our neighborhoods,” Holder said.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 16, 2013 | By August Brown
The George Zimmerman trial highlighted the legal and moral complexity of Florida's "stand your ground" laws. Stevie Wonder, for one, thinks it's time to fight back against them. The legendary singer-songwriter told a Quebec City, Canada, crowd on Sunday that he would  boycott Florida on future tours, along with any other state that has passed similar "stand your  ground" legislation. "I decided today that until the 'stand your ground' law is abolished in Florida, I will never perform there again," Wonder said.
ENTERTAINMENT
July 15, 2013 | By Randall Roberts
In the wake of Saturday's acquittal of George Zimmerman in the death of unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin, New York rapper Pharoahe Monch has released an incendiary track called “Stand Your Ground.” It's a potent, hard song that decries the verdict through a sound somewhere between punk rock and hip-hop. Monche is best known in New York circles as being half of the 1990s Queens, N.Y., duo Organized Konfusion, and has never shied from speaking truth to power. In a world in which many of today's most powerful rappers have delivered rhymes about how rich, famous and fancy they are, Monch on “Stand Your Ground” takes a clear position on a controversial issue.
NATIONAL
March 5, 2013 | By Matt Pearce
An attorney for George Zimmerman said in court Tuesday that he did not need a two-week immunity hearing in April to determine whether the defendant acted in self-defense under Florida's "stand your ground law. " Zimmerman killed Trayvon Martin, 17, during a neighborhood confrontation on Feb. 26, 2012, in Sanford, Fla. His defense has maintained that he shot Martin, who was unarmed, in self-defense. The two-week hearing had been scheduled to determine whether Zimmerman could be exempt from culpability by a legal principle in Florida known as "stand your ground," in which a person is given immunity for using deadly force if he or she had a reasonable fear of imminent death or great bodily injury.
NATIONAL
June 26, 2012 | By Molly Hennessy-Fiske
HOUSTON -- Attorneys for a Houston-area man convicted of murder despite claiming self-defense under Texas' version of a "stand-your-ground" law were expected to present more character witnesses Tuesday as jurors consider his sentence. Raul Rodriguez, 46, was convicted of murder June 13 and faces up to life in prison for the 2010 killing of neighbor Kelly Danaher, 36, an elementary school teacher. Among those expected to testify Tuesday is Rodriguez's wife. Rodriguez, a retired Houston-area firefighter living in Huffman, an unincorporated area 30 miles northeast of Houston, had gone to Danaher's home to complain about the noise coming from a party.
NEWS
March 25, 2012 | By Tina Susman and Molly Hennessy-Fiske
George Zimmerman has so far avoided arrest in the killing of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin by using Florida's "stand your ground" defense , but the case has forced even supporters of the statute to confront what critics say are gaping holes that leave it open to wildly disparate interpretations. Even the lawyer who has emerged as an advisor to Zimmerman, Craig Sonner, appeared uncertain Friday over whether Stand Your Ground should apply in this case, despite Sanford police claims that the reason Zimmerman remains free is because "stand your ground" protects him. And the former Florida governor, Jeb Bush , who signed the bill into law in 2005 and supported its passage, said Saturday he did not think it should protect Zimmerman, who shot the unarmed teen after trailing him as Trayvon walked to the home of a family friend living in the same gated community as Zimmerman.
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