It seems to me that the folks in Florida should put Stand Your Ground on shaky ground.
Because evidently it can be a license to kill.
And God knows, we have plenty of blood-soaked killing fields in our country without giving people with itchy trigger fingers a license to scratch them.
After a retired Tampa cop fatally shot a texting moviegoer, his lawyer mounted a popcorn defense Tuesday that raised the ugly specter of Stand Your Ground.
Attorney Robert Escobar did not actually speak the words Stand Your Ground but his legal argument on behalf of 71-year-old Curtis Reeves at Tuesday’s preliminary hearing was the same as if he had uttered the name of the Florida law that says a person is justified in using deadly force if he or she reasonably believes they are in danger of death or great bodily harm.
“The alleged victim attacked him,” Escobar told the judge. “At that point in time, he has every right to defend himself.”
Apparently Escobar has a very broad definition of the word attack.
Escobar reported that 43-year-old Chad Oulson had thrown “an unknown object,” maybe a bag of popcorn, at Reeves.
”Which resulted in gunfire,” Escobar said.
Doesn’t it always?
After all, how much damage can a bag of popcorn do, even if it is buttered popcorn?
It definitely doesn’t pack the same concussive force of a block of granite or even a box of Raisinets.
Fortunately, Judge Lynn Tepper doesn’t share the same broad view of the word attack and was not impressed.
“It may or may not have been popcorn,” Tepper said. “An unknown object does not equal taking out a gun. It doesn’t warrant taking out a gun and firing it at someone’s chest.”
Tepper ordered Reeves held without bail on a charge of second-degree murder.
Nasty things happen in prisons.
Hopefully none of the cons assault Reeves with a bag of popcorn in the shower.
That would make the popcorn rather soggy.
And don’t you just hate that?