The heavily criticized “Stand Your Ground” law has been used as a method of defense in relation to another Florida shooting death. According to ThinkProgress.com, Florida prosecutors revealed in a statement earlier this week that they would not be pressing homicide charges against 17-year-old Tyrone Pierson, an Ocala, Florida teen who shot and killed 40-year-old Julius Jacobs in cold blood.
CBS News is reporting that the altercation occurred after Jacobs got out of his vehicle after engaging in a verbal dispute with Pierson and his two friends, who were walking together down an Ocala street. Some reports imply that the altercation began after Jacobs almost hit the teens with his vehicle. Once Jacobs exited his vehicle, the teens say that he began following them with a big stick. Pierson then fired a fatal shot at the victim’s head.
Although it is illegal under Florida law for anyone under 18 to posses a concealed firearm, prosecutors say that Pierson has been made immune to homicidal charges due to the highly controversial “Stand Your Ground” law. The law states that if a killer “reasonably believes that deadly force is necessary to prevent imminent death or great bodily harm to himself… or to prevent the imminent commission of a forcible felony.”
Pierson will still face charges including carrying a concealed firearm and possession of a firearm by a minor. ThinkProgress is also reporting that the teen will be charged with evidence tampering, as he initially lied to investigators about the location of the gun. The victim, Julius Jacobs, who was an assistant church choir director and a father of five, is remembered as a “nonviolent person.”
This is a very sad story.