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Indiana Moms Demand Action, Everytown Criticize Committee Vote Advancing Legislation That Would Expand Controversial ‘stand Your Ground’ Law and Reduce Accountability

March 20, 2019

INDIANAPOLIS — The Indiana chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, part of Everytown for Gun Safety, today responded after the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to advance HB 1284, legislation that would reduce accountability and prevent people from seeking justice by creating broad immunity from civil liability in cases where a shooterinvokes Indiana’s Stand Your Ground law. The bill heads next to the Senate floor.

“Indiana law already allows each of us to protect ourselves, so this proposal isn’t about self-defense,” said Rachel Guglielmo, volunteer leader with the Indiana chapter of Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. “It’s an effort to shield people from accountability. Our civil justice system exists for good reason, and undermining it would be a mistake.”

Stand Your Ground laws upend centuries of traditional self-defense doctrine and threaten public safety by encouraging armed vigilantism, allowing a person to kill another person in a public area even when they can clearly and safely walk away from the danger. These laws are associated with increases in homicides and injuries across different demographics and neighborhoods, while disproportionately impacting communities of color. They encourage the escalation of violence in avoidable situations and often protect people with violent backgrounds.

Rather than address these well-documented problems created by Stand Your Ground policies, HB 1284 would expand Indiana’s Stand Your Ground law by creating new legal hurdles for Hoosiers seeking some measure of justice through the civil justice system.

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