Self-Defense In Florida
In Florida when relating to self defense, several circumstances allow an individual legal immunity when defending themselves and a number of others that can place you in questionable waters for prosecution. With this in mind, it might be helpful for any citizen to know a few basic terms and concepts in Florida’s legal system. They’ll save you from some grating headaches in case the worst occurs, and you do need to protect yourself or your family from harm.
Non-Deadly Force for Self-Defense
If a situation takes a turn for the worst, you have several legal standards to examine under Florida Law. To begin, any individual is justified in using non-deadly force to protect themselves from another individual’s imminent use of force against them. This is written under Section 776.012, which further states that an individual has no duty to retreat by law.
Deadly Force for Self-Defense
With this in mind, Florida law splits justification into a few separate primary statutes. These are important to know for any citizen or visitor to Florida, so be sure to memorize this information for your legal protection.
776.012, “Stand Your Ground”: This law states that a person is justified and has absolutely no need to retreat if they believe that deadly force is necessary to prevent either a forcible felony, death, or great bodily harm.
782.02: Deadly Force is justified when any individual is resisting attempts to murder or commit a felony against oneself or any abode wherein the person is currently occupying.
776.013: This statute deals with unlawful acts against one’s home or vehicle. It presumes that any individual that has a reasonable ‘fear of imminent death or bodily harm’ when another unlawfully enters or attempts to remove them from their occupied space. Anyone unlawfully entering said space is assumed to be doing so with the intent to act with unlawful force or violence, which justifies the above.
Juries and Self-Defense
You should also anticipate how a jury might react to your actions with these statutes in mind. When a court of law examines a self-defense case, the jury will evaluate the actions taken with the perspective of a ‘reasonable individual.’ If you believe that you were justified, and any ‘reasonable individual’ would have done the same, this is an objective standard.
If you present evidence of self-defense, the State of Florida must overcome your claim beyond a reasonable doubt. Thus, your justification lies in the realm of reason more so than varied legal statutes. Any evidence entitles a defendant to a jury’s deliberation. Although, this standard is low, even a small margin of evidence can be sufficient in transforming your legal defense in your favor.
In conclusion, your usage of force situation might have a number of legal precedents. You also have a number of protections in case of tragic attacks. However, if you require further information or counseling on the subject at hand, be sure to contact our team for guidance. Knowing your rights in such incidents can make or break a legal case.