Teen's mom, lawmakers want 'stand your ground' repealed

Two Democrats file challenge of controversial law

Published On: Jan 30 2013 04:06:18 PM EST   Updated On: Jan 16 2013 01:34:02 PM EST
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

The mother of a Sanford teen who was killed by a man who claimed he acted in self defense was in Tallahassee on Wednesday to support proposed legislation to repeal Florida's Stand Your Ground law.

Trayvon Martin’s mother, Sybrina Fulton, joined Sen. Dwight Bullard, D-Miami, and Rep. Alan Williams, D-Tallahassee, who are sponsoring the repeal bill (HB 4009).

"How many lives do we have to lose? How many children have to be killed? How many times are we going to bury our loved ones and not do anything about it?" Fulton said.

The Stand Your Ground provision allows people who feel threatened to shoot at assailants in public.

"Since 2005, we've had a number of cases that show the intent of the law may not be carried out the way we thought it would be. I think it's the right time to have this discussion," said Williams. 

The man accused of killing of 17-year-old Jordan Davis in the parking lot of a Jacksonville Gate station the day after Thanksgiving -- Michael Dunn -- may also use the Stand Your Ground law in his defense.

Jacksonville attorney Mitch Stone, who has worked on stand your ground cases before, told Channel 4 repealing the law will take a lot of work.

"If there is an ability to repeal it, they're going to have to get a lot of people in the state of Florida agreeing that's what they want and I think there's a lot of legislators who feel we should keep Stand Your Ground," said Stone.

Stone said there may be a push to specify when a person has the legal right to stand their ground by tweaking the law. He doesn't think that works.

"At the end of the day, I don't think there's any middle ground. You either have the ability to defend yourself without the duty to retreat or you don't. And I don't think you can start figuring out when you have a duty to retreat or don't. You either do or don't," said Stone.