Over 20 states, including South Carolina, have passed Stand Your Ground laws which allow people to kill another person if they can prove self-defense. However, some prosecutors in South Carolina say that the law should not apply to victims of domestic violence, ThinkProgress reported.
“(The Legislature’s) intent . . . was to provide law-abiding citizens greater protections from external threats in the form of intruders attackers,” said South Carolina prosecutor Culver Kidd. “We believe that applying the statute so that its reach into our homes and personal relationships is inconsistent with (its) wording and intent.”
This interpretation of the law is ridiculous. Granted, Stand Your Ground laws are inherently flawed and should be taken off of the books, but if they are going to be implemented, apply them to everybody. Essentially, victims of domestic violence been given less protection against attacks than a madman who killed a bystander while brandishing a gun at young women, ThinkProgress noted.
The man, Shannon Anthony Scott, shot and killed 17-year-old Darrell Niles while he was harassing young women with his gun, calling them “women thugs.” Using Stand Your Ground, Scott was let off the charges.
Prosecutor Kidd used his asinine argument when pursuing a murder case against Whitlee Jones, a woman who killed her physically abusive girlfriend with a knife while being attacked. Jones used the Stand Your Ground defense and a judge granted her immunity from conviction, citing the fact that “most vicious domestic violence is likely to occur” inside the home. Kidd wants to appeal, however.
In South Carolina, one woman dies every 12 days from domestic abuse and it has been noted that lax laws regarding domestic violence make the “deck stacked against women trapped in the cycle of abuse.” Seventy percent of those abusive spouses who murder their victims have a criminal history of domestic violence.
What’s with this conservative-like shot to equal rights and protection? Kidd’s interpretation of Stand Your Ground is dangerous because it lessens the protection for domestic violence victims – mostly women- which is obtuse and irresponsible.
Josh is a writer and researcher with Ring of Fire. Follow him on Twitter @dnJdeli.