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Judge Speaks Out About Stand Your Ground Law

Some have called a controversial deadly shooting here in Palm Harbor a "stand your ground" case while others refer to it as "road rage". Will a Hillsborough judge's comments influence the case?

While the family of a Palm Harbor man man awaits the outcome of the State Attorney's investigation into his deadly shooting, a Hillsborough county judge is saying Florida's "stand your ground" law has been misapplied across the state. 

This might be good news to Brandon Baker's father, Kevin Lindsay, who says a detective told him his son's death looked like a "stand your ground case", which

Last March, Brandon Baker, 30, was shot and killed during a roadside confrontation with another driver, Seth Browning. Browning told detectives he followed Baker because he was worried about his driving, and he shot and killed Baker when Baker allegedly approached him in an aggressive manner and would not back down

Last week, Hillsborough Circuit Judge Gregory Holder said the controversial law has been misapplied throughout Florida by police and prosecutors who use it as a reason not to bring charges in a homicide. "It was not designed to be decided by them," Holder told the Tampa Bay Times. Holder says the law was intended for a defendent's use in arguments before a judge. He made the comment while presiding over a second-degree murder case in which the attorney used the "stand your ground" law to defend his client's actions.

Here in Palm Harbor, the Brandon Baker shooting has been a topic of intense debate on Palm Harbor Patch; with some people call it a "road rage" incident while others refer to it as "stand your ground". 

Palm Harbor Patch called State Attorney Bernie McCabe's office Monday May 7, for an updated on the case and was told it is still an active investigation.

ray william May 09, 2012 at 06:47 PM
browning should stand trial for road rage and first degree murder thats the bottom line he is nothing more then a rent a cop with a ego so he can go get fu....in jail
Mark May 13, 2012 at 04:44 AM
You've got it backwards Mr. Williams.
CDavis May 15, 2012 at 03:26 PM
How can you defend your actions with "stand your ground", if you follow another person. Only the police (profiles) then uses cause to follow. Anyone, that follows another person has an underlined reason other than trying to help you, the other person, or the public. Also, even if he followed the other person to his destination, what reason did he have to get out of his car, and confront the other person. If the other person confronted him (when he saw that he was being followed), at that time, he had 2 options...flight or fight. And the person who holds a gun, only assumes the gun gives him the power to fight but the most reasonable alternative for everyone is to back out of this mans neighborhood (in the same car you followed him in) and haul-tail. I agree with the judge...this law is being unjustly tagged by those who know the law and cannot find another reason to get their client off on any other charge, but to say he had reason to fear for his life by another "un-armed" individual. This law is not even fair to the dead person, cause, I'm sure, if he knew the mans intention (who was following him un-lawfully) was to pull out his gun and shoot him dead, he would have chosen to drive a little more carefully, as not to draw any attention to warrant another person to follow him. Who's next?

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