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Cincinnati Council opposes "Stand Your Ground"

Jay Hanselman

Cincinnati Council is now on the record opposing a plan to bring “Stand Your Ground” legislation to Ohio.  

It became the focal point of Trayvon Martin/George Zimmerman incident in Florida.  A jury found the neighborhood watch volunteer not guilty in the shooting death of unarmed teenager Martin.  

Democratic State Representative Alicia Reece said during a press conference Ohio doesn’t need such a law.

“While many states around the country who have Stand Your Ground laws are looking at ways in which they can repeal those laws or change those laws, unfortunately Ohio is moving backwards,” Reece said.  “By trying to implement the Stand Your Ground law, which has become one of the most polarizing issues not only in the state of Ohio but in the country?”

Current law lets individuals freely defend themselves and their property.  But if a person can safely retreat, he or she has the duty to do so.  The stand your ground law would remove the duty to retreat.  

Janaya Trotter with the National Action Network said the new law is a bad idea.

“We do not need vigilantly justice,” Trotter said.  “We have adequate self-defense laws in Ohio that protect all of us.”

Councils in Toledo and Dayton have also passed resolution opposing House Bill 203.  Opponents are also collecting petition signatures against the plan.

The Ohio House could debate the measure this fall.

Jay Hanselman brings more than 10 years experience as a news anchor and reporter to 91.7 WVXU. He came to WVXU from WNKU, where he hosted the local broadcast of All Things Considered. Hanselman has been recognized for his reporting by the Kentucky AP Broadcasters Association, the Ohio Society of Professional Journalists, and the Ohio AP Broadcasters.