MIAMI — Florida, which spearheaded the country’s use of the Stand Your Ground defense, is poised to significantly alter its self-defense laws, making it easier for defendants to use them.
The Florida Legislature is on the verge of passing legislation that would bolster self-defense laws and shift the burden to prosecutors during immunity hearings to show that such laws should not apply.
The Senate on Wednesday passed a revised Stand Your Ground bill by a vote of 23 to 15, paving the way for the House to take up the bill in the coming weeks. Gov. Rick Scott, a strong proponent of gun rights, is widely expected to sign the final measure.
“I think of all the people who will be saved because we did this right and put the burden of proof where it belongs,” State Senator Dennis Baxley, one of the authors of the original 2005 Stand Your Ground bill, said during a passionate floor debate that touched on the importance of self-defense and the reality of race in America. “I’m sorry if that burden seems too heavy. That’s what we do in America. You are innocent until proven guilty.”
More (I cut before the inevitable mention of Zimmerman and the NYT's pissing and moaning): https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/15/us/stand-your-ground-florida.html