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Florida Extends 'Stand Your Ground' To Cover Warning Shots

Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill Friday that extends the "Stand Your Ground" law to include warning shots.
Posted at 10:51 PM, Jun 21, 2014

Florida Gov. Rick Scott signed a bill Friday that extends the state's "Stand Your Ground" law to people who fire warning shots.

This bill could help Marissa Alexander, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing what she claims was a warning shot at her husband during a dispute. She appealed the judge's ruling and is now awaiting a retrial. (Via WTLV)

Some fear this change to the already controversial law means people can pull their gun out whenever they are in an dispute, but Florida Attorney Anthony Rickman told WTVT that's not the case.

"This modification of the stand your ground law fills in the gaps of the existing stand your ground law, which is to threaten somebody with the use of force and not actually shoot somebody." (Via WTVT)

The prosecution and defense in the Alexander case have conflicting opinions on what this means for Alexander. 

Alexander's attorney said they are grateful the judge signed the bill and is confident this will work their favor, since the bill was written with Alexander's case in mind. (Via ABC)

But the prosecuting attorney points out that the bill is not retroactive and even if it was, there's evidence working against Alexander: "When you look at the facts of the Marissa Alexander case, (the bullet) went into the wall and into the next room. That was not a warning shot." (Via The Florida Times-Union)

A date has not yet been set for Alexander's retrial.