FL Rep introduces "Warning Shot" bill

This is a discussion on FL Rep introduces "Warning Shot" bill within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; In response to the appellate court overturning the verdict of the woman sentenced to 20 years for firing a warning shot, Representative Combee has filled ...

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Thread: FL Rep introduces "Warning Shot" bill

  1. #1
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    FL Rep introduces "Warning Shot" bill

    In response to the appellate court overturning the verdict of the woman sentenced to 20 years for firing a warning shot, Representative Combee has filled a bill to exempt from the 10-20-life law any persons who fire a warning shot in self defense.

    In reality it will be more complicated than that, but at least it's a step in the right direction. The problem that will remain for her is that she was (originally) convicted of "aggravated assault." If she is again convicted during a retrial, the 10-20-life law may still apply.

    A link to the report:

    Bill filed to OK warning shots | Tallahassee Democrat | tallahassee.com
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    I can't find the text of the bill. These damn newspapers report facts but skip all the work.

    I suppose if the shooting is justified then fine, one could argue for a warning shot. But I am also concerned about unintended consequences in SD shootings:

    Prosecutor: "The LAW allows for a warning shot. But did Mr. Jones fire a warning shot that night on the parking deck when Mr. Smith approached Mr. Jones? NO! There was no warning that the law allows! Instead, Mr. Jone fired one shot, killing Mr. Smith!"

    I'd rather not have warning shots. If you need to use the gun, you are in a dire situation....
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    A "warning shot"--to my knowledge--is not "prohibited" by FL law. 10-20-Life applies to the use of a firearm during commission of a crime, in the lady's case, aggravated assault. There is a prohibition against discharging a firearm in public places, but none against discharging one in one's own home.

    I doubt a law specifically allowing a warning shot would pass due to the inherent liability of any fired bullet. The 10-20-Life is a sentencing guideline (requirement?) for a gun crime.


    Note: Mods, please move to 2nd Amendment & legislative thread.
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    Seems to me if it is a legally justified draw and shoot situation, then a warning shot wouldn't be illegal under current law if a person chose to do so. If it isn't a legally justified draw situation, then I wouldn't think a warning shot would be legal under the new law. I just don't see what it would accomplish. I do personally think the lady in that case got hosed, but not sure the outcome would be any different. You're either legally justified to draw or not.
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    Here's the first one he introduced...

    House Bill 1047 (2013) - The Florida Senate
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    Alas, I see that bill died in committee. Perhaps he reintroduced it?
    Retired USAF E-8. Lighten up and enjoy life because:
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    Yes I think that is the case. Maybe it will be out in a few days...
    -PEF, a Framer with a Steelie...
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    Distinguished Member Array GunGeezer's Avatar
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    Does any one think a criminal, ie: thug, thief, gangbanger etc. will fire a warning shot? A legal test for any gun control law should be, what would a criminal do?

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    It wasn't a warning shot, my hands were shaking and I missed.
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    Senior Member Array CIBMike's Avatar
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    I am with PEF on this .This could be used in court to turn a good defensive shooting into a nightmare.
    The easy way is always mined.

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    Terrible Idea

    This is a terrible idea. Giving a less onerous penalty is fine, that should happen. Doing a 180 is totally irresponsible for it puts innocent people at risk.

    Anytime shots are fired in metropolitan areas this is the case, the more crowded the area ( - God knows pedestrian traffic - but also people in homes, offices, on foot a distance away), the worse it is. All of them have considerable risk when shots are fired in Self-Defense.

    But Self-Defense shots are well-defined as to when they can occur, at reasonable belief of a lethal attack beginning. If a legal shot, that will be at some particular action of the BG - a run towards you knife in hand, beginning to unholster a gun etc. that distinctly happens at this moment.

    A warning shot must be much less defined - some will jump the gun, some wait too long, some will fire out of panic and not realistic perception, quite a few, it is almost completely subjective as to when this will occur and when it should occur, so there will be MORE of them - warning shots - than SD shots occurring. And this will be still be the case no matter how specific some Law is written with conditions allowing warning shots - they are inherently vague, in life. They will stay so.

    Look at a residential street sometime while walking - or a commercial street. Try to find a direction to fire even an SD shot that does not put people in dwellings at high risk 15'-30' away if shooting in the direction of dwellings on the side of the street you are on, and 150' if across the street, or some more if shooting at an angle. Even in Manhattan the extremely wide avenues are nothing for a bullet fired across the avenue.

    And now in the middle of all that, WARNING SHOTS are allowed!? By some panicked civilian never in his life ever remotely experienced in such a deadly encounter and with no professional training? If he's supposed to shoot straight up there will be a very fast bullet falling down, besides all that needs to happen with people in a dwelling of more than one story, -- and the average house will have three including an attic, commercial buildings any number, -- is the shooter being slightly off in his pointing (he won't be looking at his gun, he'll be riveted on the BG) and Granny gets it in the second or third floor window or Chuck in the 10th floor of a commercial building. If you shoot straight down or at an angle? Well think about that for 3 minutes, you'll come up with a long list of horrible results.

    If this is the politics of guns - including a belief it has to do with Rights - it is a wickedly inappropriate assignment of that topic to a situation purely about danger, lethal danger, to innocents -- (the more than possible killing or maiming of innocent people is not a Right of anyone's) -- and a sure way to increase that danger beyond the shot fired to save your life - and that one or multiple is not supposed to occur really if houses with people in them at close proximity are in the direction of the shot, people do miss - even Police - 80% of the time.

    So it's a good idea to shoot and intentionally miss? Puleeeeeeese!
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    Zero discretion = zero intelligence

    Quote Originally Posted by BugDude View Post
    Seems to me if it is a legally justified draw and shoot situation, then a warning shot wouldn't be illegal under current law if a person chose to do so. If it isn't a legally justified draw situation, then I wouldn't think a warning shot would be legal under the new law. I just don't see what it would accomplish. I do personally think the lady in that case got hosed, but not sure the outcome would be any different. You're either legally justified to draw or not.
    Excellent spot on analysis. The problem in this case is not so much the jury's verdict, but rather the mandatory 10-20-life sentencing law removing the Court's discretion to tailor a sentence to fit the overall circumstances of the individual case.
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