by Penka Arsova
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis (R) has drafted legislation that would allow armed citizens to shoot looters and rioters in the state.
The draft bill would expand on the already existing stand-your-ground law in the state that gives citizens the right to defend themselves with potentially deadly force if there is reasonable belief that they are in serious danger. In such cases, prosecutors are required to show “clear and convincing” evidence that the person was not acting in self-defense.
DeSantis would add to the legislation to justify using force against people engaging in conduct that “results in the interruption or impairment of a business operation.” This conduct is reportedly described in the draft as being a burglary within 500 feet of “violent or disorderly assembly,” according to the Miami Herald.
Under the draft bill, blocking traffic during a protest would be a third-degree felony and there would be criminal penalties for taking part in “violent or disorderly assemblies.” The proposal would give immunity to drivers who say they accidentally killed or injured protesters that block traffic.