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Stand Your Ground Goes Before State Supreme Court

Photo from wfsu.org/gavel2gavel/
Photo from wfsu.org/gavel2gavel/

A case that could define who has to prove self-defense under Stand Your Ground goes before the state Supreme Court Tuesday morning.

Jared Bretherick is charged with aggravated assault with a firearm. He says he was defending himself and his family three years ago when he pulled a gun on another driver in Central Florida. Bretherick invoked Stand Your Ground, but a lower-court judge wouldn't dismiss the case.

University of Central Florida Legal Studies Professor Brett Meltzer says, at that court level, the case was about Bretherick proving self-defense. Now, it's about who has that burden of proof.

He says it boils down to: "does the State has to prove it, or does the defense have to prove it? And that's the technical question that this particular case before the Supreme Court may answer."

Meltzer says he doesn't see race as a factor in this case.

He also dismisses Attorney General Pam Bondi's worries about retroactive case changes. He says the high court can handle those in the ruling.