4 Rutgers J. L. & Pub. Pol'y 504 (2006-2007)
Stand Your Ground: Florida's Castle Doctrine for the Twenty-First Century

handle is hein.journals/rutjulp4 and id is 504 raw text is: 

Rutgers Journal of Law & Public Policy


STAND YOUR GROUND: FLORIDA'S CASTLE
     DOCTRINE FOR THE TWENTY-FIRST
                       CENTURY


                   Christine Catalfamo



I. INTRODUCTION

   In October 2005, Florida, a notoriously violent state, codified
its castle doctrine and doctrine of self-defense into a group of
statutes known as the Stand Your Ground law. This new
statutory scheme abrogates the duty to retreat before using
deadly force and is built upon hard, bright-line rules and
presumptions that appear to do away with some of the
traditional considerations of necessity and proportionality.
Florida has all the ingredients for .   disaster with laws
involving deadly force: it is a high-crime state with heavy
urbanization, a massively overcrowded prison system, and an
extremely diverse (and often tense) racial population.1 Critics
of the law fear that it goes too far and will turn the state into a
modern Wild West, rather than simply secure a person's right to
protect himself, his family, and his fortress against wrongful
attack and intrusion.
   Despite the bright lines drawn by the statute, the broad
rights granted by the Stand Your Ground law (alternately called
the Shoot First law   by its critics and opponents)2 are

   1 Clayton E. Cramer & David B. Kopel, Shall Issue: The New Wave of
Concealed Handgun Permit Laws, 62 TENN. L. REV. 679, 690 (1995).
   2 Shoot First is an abbreviation of Shoot First, Ask Questions Later.
Linda Kliendienst, Welcome to Florida, But Look Out: Expanded Self-Defense
Law Sparks Campaign to Alert Guests, SUN-SENTINEL (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.),
Broward Metro Edition, Sept. 26, 2005, at lB.


                            504


Fall 2007


V01 4:3

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