Miami Herald: Florida Senate approves changes to ‘stand your ground’ law; fate in House unclear

By a 24-12 vote, the Florida Senate on Thursday approved changes to the state’s controversial “stand your ground” law that are endorsed by the National Rifle Association but which opponents argue would “stack the deck against justice for the dead,” especially if the victim is a racial minority.

The legislation shifts the burden of proof in a pre-trial hearing from defendants to prosecutors, requiring state attorneys to prove “by clear and convincing evidence” why a defendant could not claim “stand your ground” in self-defense cases.

Its prospects at becoming law are unknown, because a House version — which required the demonstration of a higher burden of proof from prosecutors — unexpectedly stalled in November in committee, a rare defeat for a priority of the NRA.

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