Florida Senate committee approves tweaks to 'Stand Your Ground' law

Published On: Dec 24 2013 10:18:12 AM EST
Updated On: Oct 08 2013 02:23:06 PM EDT

Seminole County Sheriff's Office/Courtesy GlobalGrind.com

Though former neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman's defense never cited Stand Your Ground laws in its case, the jury was instructed to consider them during deliberations. The jury acquitted Zimmerman of all charges in the 2012 shooting death of Trayvon Martin.

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Lawmakers are considering changes to the "stand your ground" law that came under scrutiny after neighborhood watch volunteer George Zimmerman fatally shot an unarmed teenager Trayvon Martin.

The Senate Judiciary Committee approved a bill Tuesday that would require the Florida Department of Law Enforcement to develop training guidelines for neighborhood watch groups.

The bill (SB 130) would also make it clear that law enforcement should fully investigate any use of force even when a self-defense claim is used.

It also clarifies that anyone who uses force against an attacker can still be responsible if they injure or kill an uninvolved bystander.

The bill was approved on a 7-2 vote. It combines legislation sponsored by Democratic Sen. Chris Smith, of Fort Lauderdale, and Republican Sen. David Simmons, of Altamonte Springs.

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