States that have 'Stand Your Ground' laws - WAFF-TV: News, Weather and Sports for Huntsville, AL

States that have 'Stand Your Ground' laws

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(Source: MGN) (Source: MGN)

(RNN) - In February 2012, the national spotlight landed on Florida's "Stand Your Ground Law" when Trayvon Martin, 17, was fatally shot by former neighborhood watchman George Zimmerman, 29.

After a jury found Zimmerman not guilty the Stand Your Ground law discussion dominated the U.S. airways.

Zimmerman's attorneys didn't pursue Florida's Stand Your Ground law in the trial, but the publicity brought out that Florida wasn't the only state with similar laws.

Florida adopted the law in 2004, and other states soon followed.

Many states passed their own version of the law while others adopted a philosophically similar law called "Castle Doctrine."

The OLR Research Report says that Castle Doctrine is a common law doctrine that says an individual has no duty to retreat while at home and may use reasonable force, including deadly force, to defend property, person or someone else.

Some of the states with this law include North Dakota, Iowa and Idaho.

The Stand Your Ground law allows a person to use force in self-defense without having to retreat first when that person reasonably believes there is a threat.

Florida, Alabama, South Carolina and Tennessee are among the states with Stand Your Ground laws.

According to, seven states - including Florida - have introduced legislation in 2013 to weaken or repeal their Stand Your Ground laws. Twelve other states introduced bills that would establish or expand Stand your Ground law.

Alaska is the only state that has adopted the expanded law.

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