Legislators in Arkansas passed a “Stand Your Ground” law in recent weeks by an overwhelming margin, and Governor Asa Hutchinson has now signed the measure into law. “Stand Your Ground” policy removes a duty to retreat before a would-be victim can use deadly force to defend against the imminent threat of death or great bodily injury.
Not everyone is pleased with the new law. Moms Demand Action and others lobbied heavily against the popular bill. A handful of people even showed up in the late January cold to voice their opposition to the media. KTBS.com covered it.
Dozens rally against “Stand Your Ground” bill in Arkansas
LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KATV) — Dozens of state and religious leaders, as well as activists from across Arkansas, rallied at the Capitol Sunday to express concerns against the proposed “stand your ground” legislation…
KTBS was kind enough to list the rally’s sponsors.
The press conference was co-sponsored by:
Arkansas Democratic Black Caucus
Arkansas Public Policy Panel
Citizens First Congress
Moms Demand Action
NAACP State and Local Branches
W. Harold Flowers Law Society
Their voices didn’t sway legislators or the governor, though. After the new law passed the Arkansas legislature, Gov. Hutchinson wasted no time in signing off on it.
Arkansas Governor Asa Hutchinson has signed into law a measure that eases the state’s restrictions on the use of deadly force in self-defense.
The Republican governor signed the measure Wednesday that removes the duty to retreat before deadly force can be used, despite past concerns he’s raised about changing the state’s self-defense law.
A similar measure stalled in the Legislature two years ago, but the bill this year moved more easily after groups such as the state’s sheriffs’ and prosecutors’ associations that previously opposed it said they’re neutral to the latest version.
The bill, sponsored by Sen. Bob Ballinger (R-Ozark) and Rep. Aaron Pilkington (R-Knoxville) received overwhelming support in the legislature by a 72-23 margin in the House and 27-7 in the Senate.
Supporters of the bill say it will help people protect themselves in a dangerous situation, while opponents said it would create a dangerous precedent.
35 states now have “Stand Your Ground” protections. While some others states have similar provisions, there are still too many states that retain their antiquated “duty to retreat” laws.