After George Zimmerman shot and killed Trayvon Martin in Florida, the country engaged in a furious debate over the the legality of “stand your ground laws.” Well, according to the neighborhood watchman’s lawyer, the law doesn’t even apply in this case.
“The facts don’t seem to support a ‘Stand Your Ground’ defense.”
O’Mara says that stand your ground laws allow a person to use force instead of retreating. But in the case of George Zimmerman, O’Mara claims that retreat wasn’t an option and that his client was purely acting in self-defense.
“People look at ‘stand your ground’ and immediately think somebody’s standing there with deadly force — be it a gun or a weapon — and having the opportunity to back up but not having the need to under the statute… I think the evidence in this case suggests that my client was reacting to having his nose broken and reacted to that by screaming out for help.”
NY Magazine notes that O’Mara has not withdrawn his request for a “Stand Your Ground” hearing yet.
But Zimmerman’s lawyer could be moving in a new direction. The Associated Press notes that O’Mara had originally planned to use Florida’s Stand Your Ground law to have the murder charges against his client dropped. Now, however, it seems that O’Mara will be using self-defense as his main argument.
“I think the facts seem to support that though we have a stand-your-ground immunity hearing, what this really is, is a simple, self-defense immunity hearing.”
The Detroit Free Press reports that Zimmerman has received more than $250,000 to help pay for his defense. $100,000 of that money went to pay his bond, another $50,000 went to security guards for himself and his wife, $30,000 went toward rent and living expenses. O’Mara now claims that his client is nearly broke and that he may declare Zimmerman “indigent” so that the state has to pay the rest of his legal fees.