20 Years For A Warning Shot?
Mother’s Day came with disappointing news for Marissa Alexander, the 31-year-old Florida woman who fired a “warning shot” at her abusive husband. Alexander was shockingly sentenced to 20 years in prison Friday morning.
Marissa thought she’d be protected from having to serve time in jail because of Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law but that was not the case.
According to Huffington Post, Alexander, a mother of three, was convicted of three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon because she fired a gun shot into a wall after her husband threatened her at their Jacksonville home back in 2010.
On the day in question, Marrissa’s husband had choked her and refused to let her leave the house. She eventually escaped to the garage, but forgot her car keys inside, and when she returned she was carrying a handgun.
No one was hurt, and Alexander stressed that her intent was not to hurt anyone, but she was just defending herself against a man who had been violent and physically abusive to her on several different occasions.
The main reason Alexander was convicted is because the evidence at the scene suggested the gun shot was fired in a more threatening direction that put the two children who were in the home at the time at risk.
Marissa could have gotten away with three years if she accepted a plea bargain, but she denied the deal in hopes that she would be acquitted by convincing the jury and judge that she fired her weapon in self-defense.
This case brings Florida’s Stand Your Ground Law to the forefront once again. Alexander believed she was protected under this law that gives people wide discretion in using deadly force to defend themselves, but unfortunately she was still sentanced to jail.
This case has been compared to the Trayvon Martin case where George Zimmerman killed a unarmed 17-year-old boy and was intitially let go, bringing more negative attention to Florida’s self-defense and gun laws.
Marissa’s family believes that the system has failed her, but state attorney Angela Corey says misinformation about her case is wide spread and claims Alexander commited actions on the night of the incident and in the months to follow that caused the outcome.
SOURCE: Huffington Post