House Passes 'Stand Your Ground' Bill During Late-Night Session

Dec 18, 2020
Originally published on December 18, 2020 12:52 am

The controversial gun law that removes the "duty to retreat" requirement before a person can use lethal force in self-defense was passed by the Ohio House. The debate over the so-called "Stand Your Ground" law happened late into the night Thursday.

Rep. Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) proposed the amendment which was attached to SB175. The amendment was language from his "Stand Your Ground" bill which he says protects people in dangerous situations. 

"My right to defend myself in the United States and in Ohio from serious bodily harm or death should be extended to anywhere I am lawfully allowed to be without a duty to retreat," says Koehler. 

The "Stand Your Ground" law gained national attention after the killing of Trayvon Martin, a Black teenager, in Florida.  

Rep. Stephanie Howse (D-Cleveland) says gun violence goes up in "Stand Your Ground" states. 

"These statistics that will tell you, when it comes to this amendment, Black people are going to die disproportionately than White people. And if you feel a certain type of way by me calling out Black people, White people, ask yourself, why?" says Howse.

Organizations representing Ohio mayors and Ohio police chiefs have also opposed the legislation and have called on Gov. Mike DeWine to veto the bill if it makes it to his desk.

For now, the bill goes to the Senate where leaders have said they have the votes to pass it. 

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