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After Marissa Alexander Denied ‘Stand Your Ground’ Defense, Supporters Cry Out For Change

Marissa AlexanderJustice for Marissa Alexander is proving elusive, after a Florida judge last week ruled that she couldn’t use a “stand your ground” defense in demonstrating why she fired a warning shot to stave off her abusive husband.

To highlight the double standard seemingly at play in Florida, supporters of Alexander have announced that next week will be Standing Our Ground Week of Action, which will include a week of programs in Jacksonville and other communities that make the following demands: Alexander’s freedom, women’s right to control their own bodies and lives, and an end to mandatory minimum sentencing and mass incarceration.

“Yet again, Florida refuses to free this survivor of domestic violence and undermines women’s right to self defense, though it failed to convict two white men for the murder of two innocent black teen boys,” the Free Marissa Now organizers said in a press statement, referring to the cases of George Zimmerman and Michael Dunn, both found not guilty of murdering Black boys. “It appears that Florida courts place less value on a young Black mother’s fear in the midst of a life-threatening attack and more value on the anger and unsupported fear of two white men.”

 Circuit Judge James Daniel has denied Alexander’s request for a “stand your ground” defense, which allows the use of deadly force instead of retreating if the person fears for his or her life. If Alexander’s actions had been deemed to fall under the “stand your ground” law, the charges against her would have been dropped.

Alexander will now have a second trial for firing the warning shot, and the jury will have to decide whether she acted in self-defense.

In 2012, Alexander was sentenced to 20 years in jail after she fired a gun in the direction of her husband Rico Gray and his two children. Though no one was injured,  Alexander was still convicted of aggravated assault.

Alexander was granted a second trial after it was determined the first judge did not properly instruct the jury dealing with her case.

During the first trial, Alexander was denied “stand your ground” immunity. But claiming they had evidence that Alexander was abused by her husband, her new legal team once again unsuccessfully tried to invoke the “stand your ground” defense. Her attorney also provided evidence that suggested the children were pressured by their father to lie about his history of violence and the incident that took place that night. It was not clear, however, what details the children may have allegedly lied about.

“Nine days after a premature birth, Marissa Alexander harmed no one when she fired a warning shot to stop another life-threatening attack by her estranged husband,” the Free Marissa Now organizers said. “She faces possibly 60 years in prison as a result of prosecution by the state of Florida. Is Marissa being used as an example?

“Incarceration happens more frequently when Black people are convicted of crimes, but women of color who are victims of domestic violence serve more time for self-defense. Female incarceration rates show 78 percent of inmates are Black and Latina, and most women in prison have been victims of abuse. This should not happen to anyone. Mass incarceration of women is a lucrative business at the stake of women’s lives and the well-being of families.”

 

What people are saying

14 thoughts on “After Marissa Alexander Denied ‘Stand Your Ground’ Defense, Supporters Cry Out For Change

  1. She got exactly what she deserved.

  2. She should have taken the 3 year plea deal, she doesn't deserve 20 ( or 60 ) years but she sure as hell doesn't deserve a free pass.

  3. That was no "warning shot",she tried to kill her "abusive"husband and in the process put his children in danger. When she was out on bail after the incident, she found/hunted her "abusive"husband and beat him up. This woman is dangerous and deserves to be locked up. If you read the court transcripts its clear Marrissa lied, and she's dangerous.

    Ad hominem attacks are always a sign your opponent has lost the debate.

  4. Ma'at Vulu says:

    No Sir!! That response came from a place that you would never Innerstand. And if she assualted and beat him so bad why didnt they charge and sentence her on that as well. Instead of 3 counts od AAw/DW and reading a transcript in Amerikkka is nothing to me… Because those can be altered and I am familiar with his side of the story and how shes the violent one. My thing is this. We dont know what really happen. Its his side, her side and the truth. I dont think putting this woman away for 20yrs is gonna save the world or her relationship with her children.You maybe one of the many brothers that for whatever reason, hate they own kind and therefore yes bad talking the black woman is your pleasure… smh… #DontBeATraitor That woman dont deserve 20 years. The Law is suppose to make a person accountable for their actions NOT making stuff up… What if it was a woman you cared for and NOT just someone you read about…

  5. Ma'at Vulu Like many women she didn't want to hold herself accountable for her actions even though it was clear she was in the wrong. As a result, she didn't take the plea deal and gave herself 20 years not the three that was offered to her. That's on her, and her "abusive"husband was trying to look out for her but she fucked up, and that's the truth.

  6. Ma'at Vulu says:

    Again thats the purpose of the law. To hold one accountable, because they may not admit their wrongs. Many people look at a plea as being guilty… This is an educated woman, who may have been under that impression. She may have thought to some degree she was standing her ground or better yet he didn't get hurt so whats the crime? How many couples in Amerikkka go through this without the "authorities" getting involved. She probably thought this was gonna be one of those times. Just as an abusive man should be held accountable, so should a woman. In this case I think its a little excessive. That's My Whole Stance… The punishment don't fit the crime..

  7. If Marissa was a white woman in similar circumstances, she would have gotten probation; I don't care how whites try to frame this. There has always been a double standard in the criminal injustice system. That's why blacks have always said there is no justice in Amerika, only 'just us'.

  8. Collin Johnson If she was trying to kill him I'm sure she could have got off another shot or caught him sleeping. Like that character Farrah Fawcett played in burning bed. lol..and it's obvious that whites will ALWAYS make justification for a system that is racist to it's core and NEEDS black bodies in the same way the plantation of old needed them. It's a racket that feeds on black and brown misery. A standard Amerikan modus operandi, They change the standards and rules when it's one of them charged. Then they turn the damn victim into the villain. We are dealing with sociopaths here. They will NEVER admit to any guilt b/c a sociopath has no conscience. Only schemes, cons and more victims to 'conquer'.

  9. Ma'at Vulu This is ONE of the major problems with the criminal injustice system–most people plea bargain b/c of bluffing or bullying by their lawyers or DA's. States don't want the expense of a trial so they pressure people, especially black and brown people who may be indigent or have little understanding of legal proceedings or jargon. We are more likely to be at their mercy and feel pressured to take a 'plea'. I say if these bastards are going to try to railroad you, make them EARN their blood money.

  10. Ma'at Vulu we really know that she left the house got a gun came back in and shot at home, when she could have just left. We really know by her OWN words that he never physically touched her that entire night. We know that he had a restraining order on HER and she broke it by coming to HIS house.

    A free pass with no charges is just a bullshit as 20 years.

  11. Ma'at Vulu she should of took plea deal she shot at him and children. this is no self defense, there are so many holes in her story it is sad. She just is appropriating Trayvon anger.

  12. Ma'at Vulu we know one thing, she left the scene got a gun then cocked it and fired at the direction of her husband and children barely missing them and while on parole violated it by attacking the dude again. WTH

  13. Chris Jagger says:

    Collin Johnson is God . he knows what's best for mankind

  14. Eyaloda Bell says:

    Black women please stop addressing people who are sexist, black women hating negros, nothing you say will change their minds, so don't waste your time.

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