La. laws similar to Florida's in Trayvon Martin controversy - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

La. laws similar to Florida's in Trayvon Martin controversy

One of the main laws causing controversy in Florida is the 'Stand Your Ground' law. Here in Louisiana, there is a similar law.

According to Lake Charles defense attorney Todd Clemons, the 'Stand Your Ground' law here in Louisiana is very close to the one in Florida.

In Louisiana the law allows the use of force in a public place, but only to a certain extent.

If someone is trying to enter your home or car you have the right to use force against them, but if you're approached in a public place, the force you're allowed to use is different.

"When you're confronting someone in a public place, where they have a right to be and you have a right to be, you can't use an unreasonable amount of force," said defense attorney Todd S. Clemons.

The killing of Trayvon Martin sparked a nationwide controversy after police did not arrest his shooter George Zimmerman. Zimmerman claimed self defense, and under Florida's 'Stand Your Ground,' that defense may be worthy. A similar law exists in Louisiana, but what exactly does it mean?

"If you are in a public place or place where you have the lawful right to be and someone confronts you and they're the aggressor, you have no legal obligation to retreat," said Clemons.

The law also states that force can in fact be used, but with restraint.

"You can use force, but it has to be a reasonable amount of force based on all of the circumstances," said Clemons.

Justifiable homicide must also be considered. That includes killing someone when it's necessary to save yourself, to prevent something from happening that endangers life, to stop someone from using unlawful force in a home, business or motor vehicle or when someone is making an unlawful entry. But Clemons says to use deadly force as an absolute last resort.

"More often than not you will be thoroughly investigated and if you kill someone in a public place where they're not entering your car or entering your home, I certainly think you're going to be arrested," said Clemons.

Clemons said if an incident like the one between Martin and Zimmerman happened in Calcasieu Parish, the shooter would be arrested.

Whether or not he would be convicted of any type of murder would obviously be up to the judicial system.

Copyright 2012 KPLC. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Motorcyclist dies in Calcasieu Parish crash

    Motorcyclist dies in Calcasieu Parish crash

    Saturday, June 23 2018 11:21 AM EDT2018-06-23 15:21:34 GMT
    (Source: Louisiana State Police)(Source: Louisiana State Police)

    A Moss Bluff man died this evening after a vehicle accident, according to Sgt. James Anderson with Louisiana State Police. Investigations revealed a 2015 Honda Civic driven by Hannah Borill, 22, of Westlake, was traveling north on Luke Powers Road and stopped at the stop sign at La. 3059. The Civic then traveled into the path of a 2018 Harley-Davidson motorcycle traveling east on La. 3059, according to Anderson.  The operator of the motorcycle, Peter McCarthy, 29, "la...

    More >>

    A Moss Bluff man died this evening after a vehicle accident, according to Sgt. James Anderson with Louisiana State Police. Investigations revealed a 2015 Honda Civic driven by Hannah Borill, 22, of Westlake, was traveling north on Luke Powers Road and stopped at the stop sign at La. 3059. The Civic then traveled into the path of a 2018 Harley-Davidson motorcycle traveling east on La. 3059, according to Anderson.  The operator of the motorcycle, Peter McCarthy, 29, "la...

    More >>
  • KPLC general manager and photographer impress with Ryan Street tap-off

    KPLC general manager and photographer impress with Ryan Street tap-off

    Saturday, June 23 2018 9:06 AM EDT2018-06-23 13:06:06 GMT

    There was much excitement around KPLC today as Vice President/General Manager John Ware duked it out in a tap dancing battle with Antoine Aaron, KPLC photographer. John is participating in the 2018 Mad Hot Ballroom dance competition alongside partner Gambrelle DiGiglia on August 4. The competition raises funds for The Whistle Stop's dancing classrooms and DanceSport program. Since John and Gambrelle's Facebook page reached 400 likes, John...

    More >>

    There was much excitement around KPLC today as Vice President/General Manager John Ware duked it out in a tap dancing battle with Antoine Aaron, KPLC photographer. John is participating in the 2018 Mad Hot Ballroom dance competition alongside partner Gambrelle DiGiglia on August 4. The competition raises funds for The Whistle Stop's dancing classrooms and DanceSport program. Since John and Gambrelle's Facebook page reached 400 likes, John...

    More >>
  • Shrimp and Jazz Fest is Saturday June 23rd

    Shrimp and Jazz Fest is June 23rd

    Shrimp and Jazz Fest is June 23rd

    Saturday, June 23 2018 9:00 AM EDT2018-06-23 13:00:54 GMT
    image courtesy of thechangetrend.comimage courtesy of thechangetrend.com

    Jazz music has been a staple of Louisiana's culture for many years, and you can help celebrate it this weekend. The Gulf Coast Shrimp and Jazz Festival runs Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Lake Charles Civic Center on Saturday, June 23rd. Jazz in the Arts is hosting a free jazz workshop before the festival starting at 9, and Jazz After Dark will follow the festival at 7 p.m.  Musician Mickey Smith Junior, with be performing at the event. Mickey Smith Jr. said in a statem...

    More >>

    Jazz music has been a staple of Louisiana's culture for many years, and you can help celebrate it this weekend. The Gulf Coast Shrimp and Jazz Festival runs Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Lake Charles Civic Center on Saturday, June 23rd. Jazz in the Arts is hosting a free jazz workshop before the festival starting at 9, and Jazz After Dark will follow the festival at 7 p.m.  Musician Mickey Smith Junior, with be performing at the event. Mickey Smith Jr. said in a statem...

    More >>
Powered by Frankly