'Stand Your Ground' Laws: Civil Rights and Public Safety Implications of the Expanded Use of Deadly Force

Testimony

'Stand Your Ground' Laws: Civil Rights and Public Safety Implications of the Expanded Use of Deadly Force

Testimony before the Senate Committee on Judiciary Subcommittee on Constitution, Civil Rights and Human Rights
October 29, 2013

Abstract

Stand your ground laws, which extend the right to use deadly force in self-defense beyond the home, exacerbate racial disparities in the rate at which homicides are found to be justified, John Roman told a Senate subcommittee. In homicides of blacks committed by whites, 11.4 percent were found to be justified, while in homicides of whites committed by blacks, only 1.2 percent were found to be justified. The racial disparity is larger in states with stand your ground laws, and racial disparities increase in stand your ground states after the law is enacted.

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