If you’ve been following the case of the Florida man who shot and killed another movie goer after arguing with him being pelted by popcorn and a cell phone, the shooter had attempted to claim that his ballistic response was covered under Florida’s “stand your ground.”
That removes the duty to retreat in certain circumstances and allows armed citizens to more effectively defend their lives when in imminent danger. But according to CNN, Curtis Reeves’ (above) defense strategy wasn’t convincing.
From Judge Susan Barthle’s ruling:
Because the defendant’s testimony was significantly at odds with the physical evidence and other witness testimony, this court has considerable doubts about his credibility, and is not willing to come to the conclusion that these circumstances are those envisioned by the Legislature when the ‘stand your ground’ law was enacted.
The law requires a reasonable belief that a credible threat of grievous bodily harm or death is about to befall the defender. In this case the defendant clearly didn’t convince the judge of that possibility and was denied the protections under the law.
Also of note: the ruling directly refutes one of the main talking points gun control activists use against “stand your ground” laws. Their agitprop claims that SYG laws allow any yahoo with a gun to open fire at the slightest provocation and “get away with it.”
But as Judge Barthle’s ruling makes clear, just because SYG protections exist doesn’t mean the law will shield someone who shoots under questionable circumstances. So the lie is put to another anti-gun talking point and the trial will move forward. Go figure.