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Jury talked Stand Your Ground before not-guilty Zimmerman verdict, juror says



Jurors discussed Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground self-defense law before rendering their not-guilty verdict in George Zimmerman’s trial, one of the jurors told CNN’s Anderson Cooper.

The jurors struggled with the law and the jury instructions, said the juror, who spoke anonymously and was identified only by her court ID, B37.

“The law became very confusing. It became very confusing,” she told Cooper Monday night. “We had stuff thrown at us. We had the second-degree murder charge, the manslaughter charge, then we had self defense, Stand Your Ground.”

Juror B37 mentioned Stand Your Ground a second time of her own accord, saying the jury ultimately made its not-guilty verdict Saturday night based on the evidence and “because of the heat of the moment and the Stand Your Ground.”

Still, the degree to which Stand Your Ground led to the not-guilty verdict is unclear and in dispute. Cooper never asked B37.

Stand Your Ground allows a law-abiding citizen to “meet force with force, including deadly force” if he reasonably feels threatened in a confrontation. The NRA-drafted law, passed by the Florida Legislature in 2005, made two major changes to homicide cases:

• It changed standard jury instructions, which previously held that a person had a duty to retreat by using “every reasonable means,” and,

• It gave prospective defendants the right to immunity from prosecution. To make the immunity determination, the courts established pre-trial Stand Your Ground hearings.

Story here

And here's the Florida Supreme Court's Standard Jury Instructions in Criminal Cases that shows word for word how Stand Your Ground changed self-defense laws: Download FSC self defense


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bill ball

B37 needs money ,she won't share her profits with the other jurors

cool heat man

have any of you, that are commenting, served on a jury, ever? if you had, you'd know instructions from the judge are very specific, and the points of law in the case are laid out for you. you are only allowed to use these points to arrive at a decision.

you can't blame the jurors, judge or even the attorneys. that's the way the law was written. if you want to change the law, elect different people. that's why we have elections every few years, and anyone over 18 is allowed to register and vote their choice.

rock the vote!


Assume there was no Stand Your Ground law, how could George retreat while he is lying on the ground having his head beat into the concrete?

Robert Underwood

I think the “because of the heat of the moment" will ultimately be cause for a mistrial


I'm really confused. Didn't the Zimmerman team decide not to use the Stand Your Ground law and instead defend Zimmerman with a simple self defense approach. Well if that was the case how was Stand Your Ground even allowed in the jury instructions. Stand Your Ground should not have been an option for the jury because the Zimmerman team forfeited that claim. http://www.cnn.com/2013/04/30/justice/florida-zimmerman-defense


He could have retreated once the initial verbal confrontation began. In other words, before things escalated.

Da nny

Those jury need to feel the hurt Martin's family feels. They basically let GZ go without considering the evidences presented. How did they get around to be discussing "Stand your ground". It was never offered in evidence... Shame on them. To that I say.... Mis-justice

Tont Marucci

Bottom line is martin had no right or reason to attack zimmerman. If he just kept walking and not become violent then he would still be alive. Everyone should have the right to use force to counter force when attacked. Why should we have to run from an attacker??


Tont, I agree should have the right to counter force when attacked, but how can you be the aggressor then shoot someone cause you lost the fight. Clearly he thought Martin was "weird looking" or "seem to be high on drugs or something," why not keep your distance and if you are approached draw you gun and hold the suspect at gun point until the police arrive. It's called a citizens arrest, Zimmerman was the only armed guy he had the option to say "freeze, I'm with the neighborhood watch and I have already called the police" all while keeping his distance. If Zimmerman was a cop he would have handled that situation a lot better, but because isn't trained Zimmerman negligently killed an unarmed guy. I don't think it was intentional but he did. It's called manslaughter.


forgive my typo's. God bless you guys.

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