Florida’s controversial Stand Your Ground law has come into national focus as it may (or may not) apply to the George Zimmerman second degree murder charge in the Trayvon Martin shooting. This morning, in another Florida courtroom, the postponement of a Stand Your Ground hearing led to a violent melee in a crowded courthouse hallway.
As reported by Orlando’s WFTV Channel 9…
Jason Clair is accused of shooting and killing James and Joel Kun outside a St. Cloud [Florida] night club last year. Clair said he killed the two brothers in self-defense.
The defense said the Stand Your Ground hearing was postponed so new gun evidence could be reviewed.
Relatives on both sides had shown up as witnesses for the hearing, but after it was canceled, the fight broke out outside the courtroom.
The Orlando Sentinel provides more details about the free-for-all in the Osceola County Courthouse:
The fight began about 9:40 a.m. in an enclosed outside the courtroom but separated by double doors leading to the courthouse’s 5th-floor corridor. For unknown reasons, both families and their friends were allowed to leave the courtroom together and congregate in the cramped area where jostling and taunting began before the first shove.
Deputies arrested James Kun Sr., family friend Jeremy Milyon, and defendant Jason Clair’s stepfather, James Barker, all of whom are apparently being held in the Osceola County Jail.
The three men have been prohibited by court order from attending the murder trial itself, which is scheduled to get underway in October. The court has yet to schedule a new date for the postponed Stand Your Ground hearing.
The murders in question occurred on June 28, 2011, outside Len’s Dug-Out Pub, a popular nightspot in St. Cloud.