Make us your home page

The Buzz

From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Sen. Siplin weighs in on Marissa Alexander case, bashes Stand Your Ground law

 Florida's Stand Your Ground law continues to stand its ground in the national spotlight, after an abused woman was sentenced to 20 years for firing a shot at her abusive husband.

Now, a state Senator who sits on a task force that is currently reviewing the self-defense statute, is using the case of the woman, Marissa Alexander, to criticize the law.

Sen. Gary Siplin, D-Orlando, released a statement this week saying that he was "deeply saddened" by Alexander's sentencing, and that the Stand Your Ground law was meant to protect people like her. Siplin, who voted for the law in 2005, now says that Alexander's case and the case of 17-year-old Trayvon Martin offer proof that the law is being applied inconsistently. No one was physically injured in the Alexander case.

Siplin's statement called the law "negligently written." On June 12, Siplin and 18 other members of Gov. Rick Scott's Task Force on Citizen Safety and Protection will meet in Sanford to take public testimony about the law.

Alexander's case will likely come up during that meeting, as her 20-year sentence has sparked social media campaigns and national media reports. Supporters are asking that the 31-year-old woman be pardoned or receive a lighter sentence, since she did not physically injure anyone and claims she was shooting a "warning shot" at a man that had attacked her in the past.

Her case was prosecuted by Duval County state attorney Angela Corey, who is also prosecuting the case against Trayvon's shooter, George Zimmerman.

Fox News' Bill O'Reilly will have a segment on the Alexander case tonight.

[email protected]



[Last modified: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 6:06pm]


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours