Ohio Senate moves gun bill without stand-your-ground provision

Gun Rights

List your event now for free! Hide caption Facing resistance within its caucus to a full stand-your-ground bill, Ohio Senate Republicans instead passed a stripped-down version of the controversial measure that does not eliminate the state’s current duty to retreat or significantly reduce penalties for improperly carrying a concealed handgun. House Bill 228 was amended Thursday and now focuses on altering the burden of proof in self-defense cases. Supporters of the change say Ohio is the only state in the nation that requires a defendant to prove by a preponderance of the evidence — a lower standard than reasonable doubt — that they acted in self-defense. “We listened to the testimony and tried to incorporate a lot of those items,” said Sen. Bill Coley, R-West Chester, chairman of the Government Oversight Committee. Republican Gov. John Kasich also had said he would veto a stand-your-ground bill. The bill, if given final House approval, would shift that burden of proof to prosecutors to prove the shooting was not justified beyond a reasonable doubt. The change “would ensure that those who are accused of a crime in a self-defense case receive a fair and just trial,” said John Commerford, deputy managing director of the National Rifle Association. County prosecutors have opposed the change, arguing that gun-rights advocates have failed to show where current law as it pertains to burden of proof or duty to retreat has resulted in miscarriages of justice. “Prosecutors aren’t charging people who justifiably are using force in self-defense […]

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