Sunday, September 29, 2013

Railroaded Woman Gets New Trial

She should just be released and her conviction and arrest erased, and return home with a big fat 7-figure check from the police department, but this is something to celebrate anyway.

Think Progress:

A Florida court has granted a new trial to a woman sentenced to 20 years in prison for firing a warning shot during an altercation with her abusive husband.

Marissa Alexander’s sentence sparked national outrage over the perverse outcomes from mandatory minimum sentences and Stand Your Ground laws. A judge rejected Alexander’s Stand Your Ground argument that she was justified in firing the warning shot to protect herself. She was then convicted by a jury of aggravated assault, and sentenced to Florida’s mandatory minimum 20-year prison term for that offense. She is serving that sentence now.

In a decision issued Thursday, an appeals panel upheld the judge’s Stand Your Ground decision, but held that the instructions to the jury on self-defense were improper. The instructions wrongly stated that Alexander had to prove her fear of aggravated battery beyond a reasonable doubt, and improperly included an instruction about injury when there definitively was no injury caused by Alexander’s action, the court held.
Because it's Florida, where white men who murder unarmed black teens walk free as fucking heroes, the court did not address the real issue that is destroying lives nationwide: automatic assumption of guilt for African-Americans.

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