The Florida legislature has passed three bills and sent them to the Governor to sign.
HB 849– This bill removes the prohibitions for CWL carry at private schools and church schools. It further removes the penalty for legal CWL carry on public school grounds when school is neither in session nor are there any school sanctioned events taking place.
HB 779– This bill eliminates any criminal penalty for open carry, and makes any violation a non-criminal civil infraction payable by a $25.00 fine. It further removes any criminal penalty or the arrest of a CWL holder who temporarily openly carries or displays a firearm.
Without comment on the wisdom of open carry, the bill does eliminate the criminal provision for inadvertent flashing, printing or display of a concealed carry weapon.
HB 245– This bill provides that the State has the burden of proof by “beyond every reasonable doubt” evidence in any pretrial self defense immunity hearing.
This last bill seeks to correct a mis-application by the courts of the prior "stand your ground" law. That law intended there to be a pretrial hearing of claims of self defense where the state had the burden of proof that self defense claim was invalid. The courts had turned the law on its head by demanding the defendant prove his innocence before granting immunity under this provision.
As a law maker proclaimed the new law was meant to re-establish the presumption of innocence until proven guilty.
As a Florida resident with a CCW permit I think these are very welcome changes to the laws! I hope our Governor, Rick Scott ( a pretty conservative guy who has done a good job so far) sees fit to sign these into law.
Chris Christian There are those who make things happen. There are those who watch things happen. There are those who wonder What The Heck happened! Pick one.