Warning shot bill ready for final vote

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - The Florida House is giving tentative approval to a bill that would let people fire warning shots and avoid prison time.

RELATED STORY: Stand Your Ground tweak moves through committee

The legislation was partially inspired by the case of Marissa Alexander. The Jacksonville woman was sentenced to 20 years in prison after firing a shot at her estranged husband. An appeals court has ordered her to have a new trial.

The House could approve the bill (HB 89) this week. Legislators on Wednesday made some substantial changes to the bill.

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One of them would give a person who successfully uses a "stand your ground" defense to petition to have records related to the arrest expunged.

Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fort Walton Beach, said a person who has their arrest dropped doesn't deserve to "have their life ruined."


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