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Senate Judiciary Committee to examine state ‘stand your ground’ laws

2nd Amend.

Senate Judiciary Committee to examine state ‘stand your ground’ laws

Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) said Friday that the Senate Judiciary Committee would hold a hearing in September to examine “stand your ground” laws in the wake of George Zimmerman’s acquittal in the Trayvon Martin case.

The “stand your ground” self-defense laws in Florida and two dozen other states allow individuals to defend themselves without requiring them to attempt to evade or retreat from a dangerous situation. Although Zimmerman did not specifically employ a “stand your ground” law defense to combat second-degree murder charges in the killing of Florida teen Trayvon Martin, the trial has brought a renewed scrutiny to the statutes.

“September’s hearing will examine the gun lobby’s and the American Legislative Exchange Council’s influence in creating and promoting these laws; the way in which the laws have changed the legal definition of self-defense; the extent to which the laws have encouraged unnecessary shooting confrontations; and the civil rights implications when racial profiling and ‘stand your ground’ laws mix, along with other issues,” Durbin’s office said in a statement.

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