Bond hearing, trial date set for Marissa Alexander
Conviction overturned; retrial of Marissa Alexander set for next Spring
Marissa Alexander appeared in a Duval County courtroom Thursday for the first time since her conviction and 20-year sentence for firing a shot at her husband was overturned.
Alexander's attorney, Bruce Zimet, asked Judge James Daniel to set a bond hearing, which will take place on Nov. 8. Jury selection for her retrial would was set for March 31.
Alexander, a mother of three, was convicted of aggravated armed assault for firing a gun shot in the direction of her husband and children during an argument.
After her stand your ground defense was denied, Alexander turned down a plea deal and took her case to trial. A jury returned a guilty verdict in 13 minutes and Alexander was sentenced to 20 years under Florida's minimum mandatory sentencing law '10-20-Life.'
The state attorney's office is proceeding with plans to try Alexander again and said she will have no possibility for bail while she waits for the trial to begin.
Alexander's case has garnered national attention and raised questions about the laws.
In September, an appeals court tossed out her conviction, basically saying the trial judge committed a fundamental error while instructing the jury, which transferred the burden of proof that she fired in self-defense from the state to Alexander.
Alexander's family and friends were in the courtroom, as were supporters from all across the state, who had held a rally outside the courthouse prior to the hearing.
One group -- the Free Marissa Campaign -- emailed out signs for people to hold up and asked people to attend her hearing this Thursday morning wearing black.
One group of domestic violence victims -- Sisterhood of Survivors -- traveled from Miami to attend Thursday's hearing and rally.
"I do believe, really in my heart, that what has been done to Marissa Alexander is an injustice -- in actually, highlights the inequities in the criminal system toward minorities," said Reina Fernandez. "Women have the right to defend themselves. Women have the right to bear arms. So we want Angela Corey to drop the case to dismiss the charges."
The state attorney's office issued this statement Thursday: "The State Attorney's Office has no intention of dropping the very serious charges against the defendant. The SAO will continue to pursue justice for our two child victims and their father who were endangered by the shot the defendant fired at them. A bond hearing is set for November 8th - the SAO opposes the release of the defendant."
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