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Stand Your Ground Hearings: What you Should Know

By Hager & Schwartz, P.A.

October 29, 2012

There are times that a killing is justified in event that the killer was trying to defend his or herself from an attacker. Many times these are called “stand-your-ground” cases. At present, a stand your ground case is going on in Miami regarding James Patrick Wonder, who was partially responsible for the death of a federal agent. At first, the police believed that Wonder was guilty of cold-blooded murder. Yet with the help of his defense attorney, the court is now considering that Wonder may be supported by Florida’s stand-your-ground law.

This law provides that a person may use force in self-defense whenever there is reason to believe that that person is threatened or that he or she does not have the ability to retreat from attack. A person can be permitted immunity to criminal charges if it can be proven that the case was a stand-your-ground issue. Many times stand-your-ground crimes take place on the defendant’s property, and are concerned with a murder.

In Florida, the stand-your-ground claims have become known as “shoot first” laws and some advocate groups heavily disapprove of them. A shooter who feels threatened will argue that he or she was defending his or herself when using a weapon on the property. When there is no witness present to argue against this complaint, many defendants can see their case dismissed or will be deemed not guilty. Some believe that the law provides criminals to get away with murder, while others believe that it is a human right that all people deserve to benefit from. If you have been arrested for a murder but you believe that you are immune to prosecution under the stand-your-ground law, then you will want to partner with a successful Miami criminal defense attorney to argue in court. Just like James Wonder, you may be able to change the court’s stance on your offense, and may even be able to avoid punishments for your actions. Talk to a lawyer at Hager & Schwartz, P.A. for more information!