Florida’s updated “Stand Your Ground” self-defense law is unconstitutional, a Miami judge ruled on Monday.
Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Milton Hirsch ruled that lawmakers overstepped their authority in creating the law this year that forces prosecutors to disprove a defendant’s self-defense claim at a pre-trial hearing.
The judge ruled that under Florida’s constitution, that change should have been crafted by the Florida Supreme Court, not the Legislature.
“As a matter of constitutional separation of powers, that procedure cannot be legislatively modified,” Hirsch wrote in a 14-page order.
The ruling is a victory for prosecutors who have firmly opposed the law they believe makes it easier for defendants to get away with murder and other violent crime.
The law, an update to the already controversial “Stand Your Ground” statute passed over a decade ago, was pushed by the politically powerful National Rifle Association. Gov. Rick Scott signed the new law into effect in last month.
Keep reading from the Miami Herald here.